Exploring the power of K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple, Stupid).
The term K.I.S.S. may seem abrasive to some, but it holds a lot of truth and should be remembered by all. So often we find ourselves trying to solve a problem by using the most people, the biggest budget, the newest technology. But sometimes a solution to a problem doesn’t have to be difficult and high tech. Sometimes the best solution is right under your nose and so obvious you could kick yourself for trying to go the extravagant route for so long. Let me give you two examples.
Monte Brown, owner of MLB Logistics—a full-service distributor of grocery, tobacco, etc.—has worked for years in warehouses that store perishable products. The problem he faced on a regular basis was product being restocked in front of old product. As you can imagine, the product in the back would go bad and this forced him to throw it away – and profit. He needed a solution to this problem. So Brown invented the world’s first pallet rotating system: HerculEase.
The concept of HerculEase is quite simple. It looks like a standard pallet, except it is made of heavy-gauge steel and stainless steel bearings. You just set your wooden pallets on top of your HerculEase and, when product starts to empty, simply pull it out, spin it around, push it back in and the older product is now in the front. Brilliant! And, again, so simple.
By focusing on the basics of the problem, Brown was able to create a simple solution to a long-time problem that almost every warehouse faces. Now, while we’re not all inventors, K.I.S.S. still has its place in our everyday environment – particularly the marketing and advertising industry.
When Brown invented HerculEase, it was at the very beginning stages of branding, marketing and advertising. In fact, at that point, the name “HerculEase” didn’t even exist. That was a name that came out of a concepting session where our challenge was to merge the strength of the product with its ingenious ease. And, thus, HerculEase was born.
What came next was figuring out how to best advertise and market the product. The difficulty in this lied in the fact that HerculEase was not only a new product, but rather a new category all together. And how do you best send out a new product into an unknowing market?
We started by creating a demo video that could be shown at tradeshows. This video featured the HerculEase in action, showing potential customers the ease and convenience of the product. We also created a supplemental overview brochure that walked the potential customer through the basics of the product, as well as the features and benefits. In addition to the video and brochure, we created vertical banners that simulated the look and feel of an actual warehouse, so as to better entice immediate sales. Three simple ideas that get the job done (ironically, very much like HerculEase).
Moral of the story, no matter the category, whatever the problem at hand, don’t over think things. Sometimes the best solution is the easiest one.
And sometimes it’s right in front of you. Take the time needed upfront to establish the problem and then find the solution that works best. And remember: never ignore the obvious, because, oftentimes, it’s underrated.