Should We Keep it Simple Stupid?

One approach to communicating a marketing message to maximize effectiveness is to keep it really simple. The argument is that the human brain can only comprehend and retain a small amount of the total data so you should try to make your message as short and simple as possible. With this perspective you might be inclined to replay a single ad over and over again until you beat the message into the consumer’s brain.

The opposite approach is to have multiple messages and several simultaneous story lines. This would be the strategy of those who view consumers as intelligent beings capable of comprehending and recalling complex messages. One example is Geico’s campaign that tells a story of a disgruntled caveman, a cute British Gecko, and old-time celebrities doing voice overs which all tie back to the central theme of saving money on auto insurance. This approach trusts consumers to be able to follow multiple stories and interpret the underlying brand message.

What do you think? Is it better to have a really simple message play over and over, or tell multiple stories with an interwoven message like Geico?

3 Comments

  1. Tedel

    04.28.2008

    Reply

    In my opinion, the best approach is the one teachers use: have you learned basing themselves in your previous experiences… not in any “undercover message”.

    Arguable, but it works for me.

  2. Josh Belafonte

    05.02.2008

    Reply

    The combination of both methods would work best. First a simple (cost effective) message that you can use in various mediums, and then eventually multiple story lines/ various market specific ads. No matter how dressed up a brand gets, it always come back to (simple)brand and its message.

  3. DVD

    05.30.2008

    Reply

    Both ways to advertise your brand can be effective if they possess the capacity to make the consumer feel in some positive way about the message.

    First off no one wants to listen to their teacher when they are watching tv or interpreting commercial ads. American consumers don’t like to be told what to do. They rather look at how the advertisement makes them feel. This can either be by forming a connection with the product or having something strike them as interesting or provoking. The Gecko is cute with his British accent. People are drawn to this ad because it makes them feel comfortable and safe listening to what the harmless Gecko has to say. This is extremely effective because consumers are able to feel a connection with the Gecko which will sway their buying habits.

    Look to evoke a connection to the consumer with your product no matter what message you portray!

Leave a Reply