The KISS Principle In Event Management

Last Updated on July 10, 2022

There’s this little thing known as the KISS principle – I’m sure I’ve made reference to it before. It’s an abbreviation for Keep It Simple, Stupid. Today, I’d like to spend a bit of time looking in-depth at how it applies to event planning.

Because like it or not, it most definitely does – particularly where event marketing is concerned. That’s where we’re going to start our discussion, by the way. It seems as good a springboard as any, no?

So. Simplicity in marketing. Let’s talk about that.

The modern world is a pretty chaotic place if you stop to think about it. Today’s user is bombarded across pretty much all fronts by a constant, unrelenting torrent of information. Everyone wants to talk to them, every brand wants a relationship with them; every business wants to sell them something.

To put it bluntly, it’s overwhelming and more than a little tiring. Worse still, it means that people usually have a tendency to tune out when something doesn’t catch their attention right away. I think Patrick Spenner and Karen Freeman of The Harvard Business review probably put it best:

“Brand loyalty, the thinking goes, is vanishing,” they write. “In response, companies have ramped up their messaging, expecting that the more interaction and information they provide, the better the chances of holding onto these increasingly distracted and disloyal customers. But for many consumers, the rising volume of marketing messages isn’t empowering – it’s overwhelming. Rather than pulling customers into the fold, marketers are pushing them away with relentless and ill-conceived efforts to engage.”

The solution, they continue, is to present consumers with a simple marketing method rather than the intense sales pushes many businesses tend to make these days. It’s to present customers with a means of weighing their options; a simple purchasing path which facilitates easy decision making. It’s to build trust through superior products and a light, easy-to-digest marketing message.

Alright, that’s cool and all, but…what does all of this have to do with event management?

That’s easy – just as people are going to tune out from a traditional marketing campaign if it’s too pushy or information-heavy, they’re going to lose interest in whatever event you’re trying to run if it isn’t clear out the door what it can offer them. People have so many different websites and brands vying for their time and attention that if your event marketing and registration path aren’t as streamlined and simplistic as possible, plenty of folks aren’t even going to bother. What that means for you is that you’ll probably lose out on a ton of ticket sales.

Simplicity isn’t important solely in terms of your marketing message, either. The event itself – and all supplemental elements like websites and apps – should be concise. It might be tempting, for example, to make an event’s décor completely over the top in order to draw more attention, but I’d advise against doing so. It could give the (hopefully incorrect) impression that the event you’re trying to run is all style and no substance.

So, basically, the KISS principle can be applied to event management in the following ways:

  • A to-the-point event marketing campaign with a clear message.
  • Supplemental materials that make it immediately clear what the event can offer attendees.
  • A streamlined, easy-to-understand ticket registration/purchasing path.
  • An event website that puts simplicity first.
  • Layout and décor that facilitates easy movement and access without being too flashy.

Simple, right?