First, let me clarify the difference between “kiss” and “KISS.”  And, no, the latter is not an emphasis of the former.  Obviously, if you’re kissing someone in business it is inappropriate.  Don’t do that.  However, the second is an acronym for “Keep it Simple, Stupid.”  While I’m not necessarily a fan of the “stupid” part of it, it rounds out the acronym so it’s easy to remember.

We’ve previously talked about content and what makes things work well for your message.  By over-complicating things, you can easily turn away your audience in a couple of ways.  If your message is buried in technical language and jargon, unless your audience, or prospective audience, fully understands what you’re trying to say your message is going to fall flat.  Think of it like the teacher on Charlie Brown or trying to listen to something in a foreign language.  If your audience can’t understand what you’re trying to say, you need to dial it back a little.  The other way your message can be over-complicated is by burying your message in overproduction.  Say, for instance, your company screen prints t-shirts.  If your video ad has cars exploding, parachute jumpers, and race cars flying around a track, there is a good opportunity I may remember the video.  But, there is a small likelihood I’ll remember anything about a t-shirt, let alone what the name of the company is.  I will more likely sit scratching my head afterwards asking myself what I just saw, and the question becomes whether or not it is worth my time to try to find what company the ad was for.

In order to keep your message simple, you can ask yourself a few questions that will help guide the process:

Who is your target audience?  
By identifying your target audience, you can develop content that is more appealing to that audience.  If you are targeting women between the ages of 25-35, you’re going to want a different message than that targeted toward men between the ages of 55-65.

Where is your audience?
Are you running a podcast?  Do you utilize Facebook video?  Wherever your audience is is where you want to run your message.  If your listeners are on your podcast, run an audio ad.  If you’re trying to get more people directed to your website, make sure your social media and your podcast point them there.

What message are you trying to convey?
Are you selling a product or service?  Are you trying to inform the public about something?  Are you doing it simply for entertainment or satirical purposes?  Your message needs to be clear and concise.  If your message is sending mixed signals, you are going to confuse your audience.

Do you have a call to action?
Many of our clients deal with online projects – either through YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, or a company website.  If you’re selling a product are you telling your audience to buy the product and telling them where they can find it?  If you’re sampling a demographic for a survey, have you instructed your audience that you’d like them to answer a few questions?  If you put content out without telling your audience what you need them to do, how are they going to know to do it?

By answering these simple questions, it can help organize your thoughts so you can formulate a definitive plan of action.  Having a plan you can act upon is helpful.  If you do your own advertising work in-house, it will save you time and resources to be able to sit down and act upon your plan versus trying to work up a social media outline or record a podcast from scratch.  Alternatively, by working out a specified plan of action, you can take your plan to an outside firm like ours and save some time and money by having an idea already in place.  Just remember to keep it simple.