Brand Matters: Keep It Simpler!
Within Etsy, we form teams united by a common material used or geographic area. I can click "Shop Local" and check out all the other 'Etsians' here in Hershey, Pa. I can also post, blog, compliment and share crafty ideas with the Etsy Paper Team whose commonality is 'paper lovers!' On the team site, we really feel the love as we comment on each other's new postings; mostly compliments and lots of exclamation points. It feeds our artists' souls! Basically, within Etsy we are grateful for the love and attention we feel even through what could be an impersonal cyberspace."
Like Crayola and LEGO, Etsy ambidextrously marries the simplicity of low-tech handmade creations with high-tech connectivity. So does Best Buy. This electronics retailer decided to have some fun with old high-tech equipment in a low-tech way. In a contest called "Scary Technology," Best Buy invited its customers to submit photos and a short description of their outdated and "scary" technical equipment for a chance to win a complete home theatre makeover. Best Buy understands that customers need help (and a bit of prompting!) in disposing of old technology and created a clever and simple way "to provide end of life options for these devices by offering new ways to recycle and trade in obsolete technology."
These examples from a variety of industries all point to one thing: Every brand needs a master simplifier and a master simplification strategy. Is your brand up for this complex challenge? Why not get out a chalkboard and a few sticky notes and try to move mountains?
Andrea Syverson, author of "BrandAbout: A Seriously Playful Approach for Passionate Brand-Builders and Merchants," is president of IER Partners, a strategic branding and merchandising consultancy. Reach her at email@example.com.