• Transform magazine
  • July 18, 2019

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Insights: Why simplicity pays when brand building for tomorrow

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The 2018 Transform Awards Asia-Pacific celebrates excellence in rebranding and brand development. Siegel+Gale was one of the winners

Siegel+Gale named Netflix, Aldi and Google as the top three World’s Simplest Brands. The 2018 top-ranked companies consistently deliver on their brand promise with simple, clear, intuitive experiences.

For last year’s study, Siegel+Gale asked more than 15,000 people across nine countries in the US, Europe, Asia, India and the Middle East to evaluate brands and industries on their simplicity. Key findings include:

  • 55% of people are willing to pay more for simpler experiences.
  • 64% of people are more likely to recommend a brand that delivers simple experiences.
  • A stock portfolio of the simplest global brands has outperformed the average of the major indexes by 679% since 2009.
  • Companies that fail to provide simple experiences leave an estimated share of $98bn on the table.

It is apparent we are living in a very unique era. An age where we are constantly bombarded with information. As a result, a higher value is placed on clarity and ease.

As part of our World’s Simplest Brands study we examined 25 industries. Let’s explore electronics, which ranks second among all industries. Global brands like Apple, acquire value through the continuous simplification of their products, communication, employee behavior and retail experience. In 2018, Apple’s score rose seven places compared with its ranking from the year prior. When consumers in China mention Apple, their comments hover around keywords including simple, easy-to-use, good and smooth experiences and communication.

Chinese consumers have greater expectation of simplicity in electronics brands. This is closely related to the rapid development of the electronics industry in China. Chinese consumers pay much attention to the performance and the core strengths of electronic products. For Chinese electronics brands, intention is required to conquer complexity. Some brands expand their product lines unduly, which results in extremely complicated product categories and naming schemes. On the contrary, focusing too much on the transmission of advanced technical terms dilutes related core benefits, and even arouses competitions between different models from the same brand. For the brand itself, the disadvantages far outweigh the advantages.

Simplicity is an imperative when it comes to building brand loyalty. Consumers desire a more transparent, direct and simpler experience that delivers convenience. Simplicity generates trust. 55% of consumers are willing to pay more for simpler experiences, while employees become more engaged brand champions when they clearly understand their organization’s purpose. Simplifying your brand from the inside out ultimately reduces the risk of leaving revenue on the table.

Johnson Gu is the general manager and executive creative director for Siegel+Gale in China