Why Simplicity (Keep.It.Simple) is a Better Business Strategy

Author: Katerina Thomas

simplicity strategy

There are many reasons why simplicity is a better business strategy. Why is this important to how customers perceive the information about your company? This episode is about understanding the importance of simplifying your business strategies to build trust, reputation and loyal customers.


In this episode, Katerina talks about

Part 1: Psychology of Simplicity vs. Complexity

Part 2: Simplicity as a business growth strategy

Part 3: Simplicity in design and marketing


Part 1: Psychology of Simplicity vs. Complexity

One of my favourite programmes is Kitchen Nightmares.

Kitchen Nightmares is an American reality TV show in which a celebrity chef visits a badly managed restaurant.

And, this restaurant is on the verge of shutting down and the chef tries to make it into a successful one.

Gordon Ramsay is the chef on the show.

I love Kitchen Nightmares. It’s my go-to show whenever I want to watch something without having to think about it too much.

Ramsay is a very confrontational chef. He always makes his guests and the kitchen staff very angry. Some people find him a bit arrogant and sometimes even rude.

But what I like the most about the show is that Ramsay is very creative when it comes to cooking. He always comes up with new and innovative dishes.

So, what does a show like Kitchen Nightmares can teach you? Are there any business lessons?

First of all, it teaches you about the importance of a good budget.

It teaches you about the importance of quality ingredients.
The importance of clean premises and hygiene. And, of course, the importance of organisation in a kitchen.

Ramsay has this philosophy of the Simplicity of the Menu. He believes that a restaurant’s menu should be simple and should be limited in the number of items.

And, Why is that important for a restaurant?

Ramsay feels that simplicity allows the restaurant to focus on food. And, it helps to direct your focus as a business owner to the uniqueness of the dining experience.

Ramsay’s restaurant’s menus have no section headings or subsections, but a single main course or dish list. There are no side dishes or desserts, perhaps just a few items such as a cup of warm tea or a slice of cake.

Ramsay believes that the simpler the menu, the more compelling the food can be.

But whilst giving diners some choice is important and it does make a restaurant more successful. A simple menu allows diners to focus simply on the food.

And, when the customers focus on food, they can better appreciate the food they eat.

Part 2: Simplicity as a business growth strategy

What I want to talk about today is the power of simplicity in business

And, this is something that I think about a lot.

If you can keep your business simple, it can help you focus on your core values and what you’re good at.

Your uniqueness. Which leads to better efficiency and better organisation.

It makes it easier for your customers to understand what you do and how to get the most out of your services.

There’s a reason why so many successful brands focus on a few key messages and stick to them tightly.

Take, for example, the iconic Apple. Was ‘Keeping it simple the key to Apple’s success?

Steve Jobs loved the simplicity. And, it became Apple’s number one strategy in hardware, software design, packaging, and even the design of Apple’s retail stores.

In other words, simplicity became Apple’s powerful competitive advantage and helped stand out from the competition.

When it comes to marketing, simplicity is a winning strategy.

Clutter and complexity lead to confusion.

Not only in personal life but in business too.

Too often, businesses try to do too much with their messaging and marketing strategies. And, this leads to confusion and confusion, leads to lack of focus, lack of customer trust.

Many business owners feel very overwhelmed in their business. And, there are many reasons for this.

For example, lack of time, lack of knowledge, lack of ability, and lack of resources are all common causes.

Many business owners are working many jobs to make their business work, which leads to overwhelm.

If you’re not able to focus on your business due to the sheer complexity of what you do, it will be difficult for you to succeed.

Of course, there are things that you can do to be more focused on your business. You can create a schedule. You can establish specific goals for your business.

But, the best thing you can do for your business is to review and rethink your strategy.

I love the quote by Steve Jobs, who once said:

‘That’s been one of my mantras of focus and simplicity. Simple can be harder than complex. You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end because once you get there you can move mountains.’

So, the K.I.S. – ‘Keeping it simple’ strategy in marketing makes it easier to convert prospects into buyers because it brings clarity to the mind of a customer.

So you get clarity instead of confusion, and decision instead of doubt.

Now here’s the important thing.

Part 3: Simplicity in design and marketing

How do customers perceive information about your company or your products?

They perceive information which is more easily processed as more attractive.

Complex information is not perceived as attractive.

Take, for example, the font used on a sign or a logo.

A store sign with a simple font is more easily processed than a sign with a more unusual font.

This is called processing fluency or the ability to process or understand a message.

And, in the case of a sign with a more unusual font – customers’ ability to ‘process’ the information will be delayed.

Or another example, a simple brand name is more easily processed than a brand name that is difficult to pronounce.

And, a simple landing page with a simple message is more easily processed than a complex one.

A 2014 study found that 38% of people will pay more for a less complicated experience.

And, why is this important?

Because, simplicity removes the clutter, and stops customers from abandoning their shopping carts.

The simpler you can make your customer journey and the simpler you can make your sales funnel, the easier it is to move customers through those steps.

Because it removes stress and saves time, and makes them feel better about buying.

So you get happier and more loyal customers.


These are 3 Things You Can do Today To Simplify Your Business

So, let’s review what we’ve covered today and what three things you can do today to deploy simplicity as your strategy for growth.

1) Complexity leads to overwhelm and inability to make decisions. Simplicity leads to positive emotions. Remember a simple formula: Less stress = More happiness. So, do an audit of your current business and seek feedback from different people (not your customers). Ask them what they feel when they see your logo, or a website, and ask how they find your marketing messages.

2) Use simplicity as a strategy for growth.
Try to see what worked and what did not in your business.
There are a lot of things that can distract you from your business, so learn to be more selective about the things that you focus on. Take a step back and think about your business in a simpler way.

Ask yourself questions like: What are the key assets that make your business unique?
What are the customer needs that you can address? What are your core values and how do they impact your day-to-day operations?

Once you have a better understanding of these key pieces, it will be easier to focus on growing and improving them.

3) Simplicity tells a powerful story in both design and messaging (for example, when the design is the message like on your landing pages). If you write an article or design a landing or sales page you need to choose one idea to focus on. If you promote an affiliate product you need to focus on one project (or one product to promote). If you choose a marketing strategy (or a marketing channel), focus on one strategy or channel at a time.
But, no matter what you do, execute your strategy well.

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