April 5, 2015

Keep It Simple

Very often we try to be everything to everyone when marketing our businesses. We go into great detail to explain what products or services we offer, even expanding our offering list to try to include every suggestion we can imagine. Our list of what we offer gets longer and longer, and the explanation of what we have becomes more exhaustive.

Previously, we discussed restaurants which have a book for their menu. They have a catalogue of dishes from which we are expected to choose, and we must do so in a short period of time while the waitperson stands at our side, hovering. How can a first time customer make an intelligent decision when faced with over whelming choices and still order something that they may want to try but have not imagined?

Many prospects will simply order something to bring the decision making period to an end, maybe something that they have tried before but often something that they just notice on the menu. It may not be what they want, like, or will enjoy. If it isn’t, they may not return to sample our menu again. Even worse, they may tell everyone that they know how confusing it was to do business with us.

At this point the business may have lost a customer with whom they had an opportunity to build a relationship. They have also created someone who will not bring new business through telling others about a great visit of their own. How often do we visit a restaurant based on the experience that we hear from someone else? How often do we avoid a restaurant when we hear of someone else’s bad experience?

We must make a customer’s experience to be excellent; we must make a customer’s visit to our business, either in person or online, to be enjoyable. Make it easy for the customer to do business with us, and they will return to us. They also will tell others how great the experience was and how pleased they were to do business with us. They become our marketing associates just because we made it a pleasant experience.

One of the best examples of keeping it simple is In-N-Out Burger. Their menu consists of 6 items: hamburgers, cheeseburgers, doubles, french fries, sodas, and shakes. Whenever they open a new location, they are crowded with customers at all hours, and their drive-through line extends out into the street. They keep it simple, and customers return over and over, telling everyone that they know to go there.

One of the pitfalls we find in business is trying to be everything to everyone. We cannot market everything that everyone may need, nor will we be able to sell to every prospect. There is room for all of us in the market of life. We should not make our product offering list so complicated that no one can understand it. We also must be so simple that our partners can explain our business to others that may become great customers.

What can we do to simplify our list of services or products? What can we do to make it easier for prospects to become customers and to enjoy their buying experience so much that they tell everyone what a great time that they had doing business with us. We should try to make every prospect a marketing associate that brings us new customers. Please leave your comments here, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.


  1. Wonderful post, Jim. Really good.

  2. Love this article Jim,

    I think we businesses need to focus on what we do exceptionally, rather than try to cater to every possible whim leaving our clients feeling like we aren't experts.

    Good read.