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Keep it simple - why offering less can lead to more

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Clearer focus on your service offer brings advantages for a smaller business or solo consultant.


Do you remember all those unplugged albums from the 90s? The concept was simple, take away most of the band and offer your audience a more stripped down sound. With just an acoustic guitar, the artist could get nice and cosy with the audience while creating new versions of old classics. It also turned out to be great for sales.

Eric Clapton’s Unplugged was probably the first, followed by a whole host of acts quickly dusting off their acoustic guitars. Even Motorhead got in on the act.

As a marketing consultant, I regularly have conversations with clients about their service offering. We think about what would make more sense to the customers - and almost always we simplify things.

I believe offering less can lead to more, especially for a smaller business or solo consultant - and here’s why.

Stand out in a sea of messages

We are exposed to so many messages each day, it’s easy to sink without trace. You are more likely to be recognised if you are consistent about the same thing. The simpler your message and the more focussed the content you produce, the more likely you are to be visible.

Can you really deliver all those services anyway?

I see a lot of solo consultants trying to cover every service their previous organisations used to offer. The result is that they are stretched and run the risk of failing to make an impact in any area. Parts of their website inevitably grow tumbleweed. Don’t try to be like the organisation you left. Be like you, now.

The power of three

There is a science to our need for simplicity. The human brain is wired to remember three messages. Many political speeches just focus on three things, any more and the audience will be lost. We like choices, but not too many. That’s why we have three traffic lights, three medals at the Olympics. Marketers have used this theory for years. Think of Snap, Crackle and Pop. It’s just easier to recall three things. This article is a good read with many marketing examples.

In my business I help mainly small business clients with three things: Marketing strategy, writing articles and content, and a little social media support. That’s it.

More confidence, more income

The more focused you are, the better you can become at it - and the more confident you’ll be. That’s good for your clients and customers - and they’ll start talking about you. You’ll appear as an authority - and, if you want to, the more you can charge.

This article was inspired by my own guitar playing, something that has become more enjoyable the simpler and more unplugged it has become. I now play almost completely acoustic - but I do know more than three chords!

 

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