If you want to stand out in your industry, you need a strong, authentic brand that’s recognisable to customers.
The most effective way to achieve this is through differentiation – either by providing a unique product or service, or marketing something similar to what’s already out there in a distinct way.
Differentiating your business from your competition can seem complex and challenging, but by keeping things simple, you can set yourself up for success.
With that in mind, here are five reasons why simplicity is your best brand differentiator.
1. Connects customers
The role of any business is to provide products and services which solve consumer problems and make their lives easier.
However, the digital domain is a crowded space where customers are inundated with brands claiming that they can heal their pain points.
This is where simplicity comes into its own – if you can provide straightforward solutions, people will pick your brand rather than another that promotes its benefits with messaging that’s unnecessarily complicated or confused.
Just look at Uber. There were plenty of existing taxi services when it emerged, but Uber made booking a cab easier than ever before by utilising an app that can pinpoint your exact location and highlight your nearest driver.
2. Empowers staff
Simplicity should be the foundation on which you run your business and a core value that’s internalised by your employees.
A straightforward ethos based on one virtue, value or principle will unify your employees in working towards shared goal – providing a simple yet effective service for customers.
Just think of TED’s mission to ‘spread ideas’ – it’s uncomplicated, but works brilliantly by drawing in people from across a range of industries to share innovative insights and hard-earned knowledge, with a consistency that keeps viewers returning for more.
3. Clear focus
When it comes to your products, customers’ primary concern is what they can do for them. However, many brands fall into the trap of providing too much detailed technical information, which distracts from the utility of their offering and alienates customers.
Enter simplicity again – it keeps you focused on the fantastic functionality of your products or services in everyday scenarios, rather than cold and complex tech specs which have limited appeal to the layperson.
4. Makes you stand out
With so many digital distractions, it’s easy for your marketing material to get lost amongst the adverts, links and social media posts.
However, by keeping your brand offering simple and providing plain sailing solutions you can actually stand out amongst the clusters of competitors online.
And many potential customers actively seek out simple brands because they provide sanctuary from the anxious slings and arrows of modern life and make them feel more organised and in control. When you’re known as a brand that makes life better for people, it’s an incredibly powerful selling point.
5. It works
Leonardo da Vinci said ‘simplicity is the ultimate sophistication’ – and he’s right. Far from being basic or infantile, it’s a savvy way to frame your offering and make your brand truly outstanding.
This is why it’s the preferred differentiator for some of the biggest brands around. For example, in their latest Global Brand Simplicity Index report, branding company Siegel+Gale named Netflix, Aldi and Google as the top 3 brands worldwide.
Netflix is a prime example – it satisfies customer demand for high quality streamed entertainment in their homes with a diverse mix of original and outsourced TV and film content. It’s accessible to all, easy to use and charges fans a small monthly fee – what could be simpler?
These five factors prove that simplicity might be the most straightforward route to success for your brand – start using it today as a compass that guides everything you do.