The ROI of Simple Messaging

Many business owners come to Erreco Strategies because they are too intimate with their product and feel they need help creating a message that will resonate with and excite their target audience. We always start by asking if they’ve listened to their customers. Effective conversion is a two-step process. First, find out what your customers want or need, and then tell your customers how your product fulfills their wants and needs in the simplest way possible.

Online listening is a great way to get quick, initial information about your customers. We recommend setting up Google Alerts for keywords relating to your business so that you know when a customer writes a review about your business or your competitors’ business. Online listening sites like socialmention are also helpful. Other effective means of listening to your customers include focus groups, surveys, and simple old-fashioned phone calls.

After you’ve listened and feel confident that you know what your customers want (versus what you think they want), it’s time to create simple messaging. People want to pay their problems (or pain points) away, so give them advice that they can trust that feeds upon their values, desires, needs and wants.

For a best practice for translating a complicated business into a product that is human centered, head to the Simple website.

Simple is a web-based solution that translates banking into what loose change and dollars really mean for customers – dreams, savings, the future, and life’s little indulgences. It budgets for you and reveals what is “safe in your account to spend.” The homepage highlights customers who have used the bank and app to turn their life around through saving. To top it off, Simple’s website uses imagery that portrays the convenience (and even indulgence) of its online budgeting solution by depicting a customer doing his/her banking in front of a whipped cream topped slice of strawberry rhubarb cake.

The bottom line:  With minimal text, Simple reveals itself as a trusted resource for people hoping to do good things with their money.

In the journalism business, there is an old saying “don’t use million dollar words.” It (literally) pays to have a clear, concise message that relates to readers. Excessive wordiness detracts from the story and the same goes for your product. Consumers don’t notice the words that may impress peers who work in your industry. What they do notice is what your product can do for them. These words need to be clear and concise – you don’t have many chances or much time to convert a customer these days!

To drive this point home, the Corporate Executive Board of Harvard Business Review measured how consumers interact with web driven marketing and one of the biggest drivers of “stickiness” or point of sales was how easy it was for customers to learn credible information about a product, weigh their purchase options, and make a decision.

If your product is technical, it helps to convert its technical aspects into how those specs influence the results your customers will achieve with your product. For example, the Harvard Business Review compared the stickiness of a) one camera brand that only revealed tech stats on its website to b) another camera brand that broke down how customers could use their camera for different styles of photography. Unsurprisingly, consumers chose camera b because the marketers made their customers’ decision simple by telling them what the camera would achieve for them rather than leaving it up to them to figure it out. Again, life is busy, especially online. When tough decisions are simplified, your business almost always benefits.

Happy messaging and remember, keep it simple!