Why Simple Wins Every Time

It finally happened. The call came ... the iPod was dying. For most people, this would have represented a real, yet manageable disappointment. For my stepfather Butch, it was something else entirely. He rushed it over immediately and looked over my shoulder as if I was diagnosing his beloved pet.

"There is nothing I can do," I told him. He hung his head.

It was time to make arrangements ...

I told him I'd come with him to buy a new one, as any good daughter would. My brother -- an IT person had other plans, surprise, surprise. He insisted there were superior mp3 players ... faster, cheaper, more features. He lobbied hard.

But there was one quality my brother never included in his list ...



For Butch, he knew what to do ... the iTunes library was like a familiar friend ... he could click once to buy music. There were no confusing screens ... no irritating software installations ... nothing but simplistic nirvana. To Butch, there was no alternative. My mom already had it ordered (of course).

This micro family drama illustrates a good point. Many organizations, many companies expect to dazzle people with bells and whistles when what the people really want is their old iPod (metaphorically speaking).

They want simple donation forms with fewer choices. Simple emails with a single call to action. Simple messages that may not tell the whole story ... but the most important point. Simple, big buttons, not buried obscure bits of text. They don't want to be wowed by your programming skills, but comforted by the organization of a well thought out process.

The testing we've done at Merrigan & Co. supports this every time.