Why Simple Ideas Win

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By: Keith Otter, Chief Creative Officer

It is said that simplicity is genius… well, it’s also a lot of hard work and discipline.

Creating a seemly simple idea is tougher than it looks. There’s a real art to looking at a problem, boiling the solution down to one simple, truthful message and then delivering it in an engaging, unique and creative way. But, when that all comes together, the results can be spectacular.

It’s no coincidence that these ideas are the ones that win the hearts and minds of consumers and award show judges alike. Why? As luck would have it, the answer is relatively simple. These ideas win because psychologically the more single-minded and disruptive an idea is the easier it’s stored and programmed into our System 1 thinking. 90% of the decisions we make use System 1 thinking. These are the intuitive, quick decisions we make every day without even being conscious of it. Brands that are programmed into our System 1 thinking become the default choice when our brain is looking for a fast answer. This is because our brains don’t like to work hard so the quicker and more immediate a solution the better, hence our love for simple, distinctive advertising.

Here are a few examples of our System 1 thinking.