One of the key points that we evaluate during our consultancy in operational marketing, is the operational process; the internal and external operating process within the organization. One of the core objectives of operational marketing is to achieve simplicity through the evaluation and analysis of implemented processes.
Operational simplicity is important because it directly influences the marketing efforts that the organization implements, and in turn, redounds in the consumer’s overall experience with the brand.
The annual Global Brand Simplicity Index Study of 2017 indicates that:
• 64% of consumers will pay more for a simpler experience.
• 61% of consumers are more likely to recommend a brand because it is easier to use.
• A portfolio of shares in the stock market of these simpler brands surpassed the main stock indices by 330%.
• When your experiences are too complex, an average business brand can leave an estimated $ 86 billion share on the table.
According to the Harvard Business Review, in 2006, McDonald’s saw its position stagnant. The fast food chain decided that the problem was their limited menu, so they tried many new items and ended up doubling the offers. But sales barely moved.
Finally, in 2016, it took a new direction. He went back to basics, eliminated most of those additional items and, instead, expanded his popular breakfast offerings. Sales finally went up, with the same store revenues 6% in 2017, and shares rose 40%.
It turns out that what their customers wanted the most was not a large menu, but a breakfast throughout the day. The executives had heard this request from the beginning. But they had ruled it out because it would require restaurants to improve and reorganize their kitchens. Additional items for lunch and dinner, on the other hand, involved relatively few adjustments.
Only when the least expensive solution failed, executives finally wanted to try the extended breakfast. But to make that change, they first had to restore a simpler menu: otherwise, the massive variety would have overwhelmed even the improved kitchens. They had to work in sequence, which means they had to simplify the operation first, before they could launch their new growth effort.
The lesson: growth is achieved by making things simpler for your client than for you.
There are processes within a company that will always be complex, such as information systems. Amazon, for example, operates with a complex data collection and information system. This is a system based on algorithms, but it results in a simple experience for the consumer when deciding to make a purchase on their platform.
Now, achieving this simplicity, as indicated in the Harvard Business Review article to boost growth, requires intentional decision making that starts from the outside. From the outside, because from outside a third party can appreciate what goes on inside and can make recommendations to simplify processes.
That does not mean that you should leave aside being focused on the client. You have to rethink your strategic moves to serve those customers in the current and future context of your market, not in the past. You must also resist the temptation to try everything with your clients and wait for something to hold or click.
You need to resist seemingly attractive movements that have undesirable long-term consequences. When you decide on an attack plan, you must carefully sequence your moves to avoid overwhelming your organization or your clients. At each stage of strategic planning, this requires a deep reflection from the outside, but this will ensure that your growth will rise up and forward.