top of page

Are you overcomplicating your message?

bowl of Valentine's Day candy hearts on table

I recently picked up a box of those chalky conversation hearts for Valentine's Day. I know most people hate these, but I remembered loving them and hadn't had them in years, so I wanted to try them again. Were they as good as I remembered? Not at all. But it got me thinking about the messages on these hearts. 

“Be mine.” “True love.” “You rock.” 

I looked up popular candy heart phrases and was surprised that there have been so many over the decades — song lyrics, pop culture references, and more. I think it's fun to see what words and phrases have been printed on these candies, given how little space there is. You can't overcomplicate things. You have to say what you need to say, and that's all. Bonus points if it's creative but still clear enough to get the idea across.

Is your brand's message the same way? 

I've worked on a handful of projects where the message is there, but it's hidden in the weeds of unnecessary words and information. Or sometimes, the idea of the message is there, but the audience has to read between the lines. There may be instances where this works (especially in more creative forms of writing), but when it comes to copy for your brand, your audience should know at a glance who you are, what you're about, and what they need to do. Otherwise, they may not stick around to figure it out.

Now don't get me wrong — there's a time and place to tell your whole story, to use big words, and to share all the details of your background. But sometimes, the simplest messages are the ones that best stick.

So if you could put your message on a candy heart, what would you say? Can you simplify who you are and what you want your audience to do in just a few letters?

If you think this is an area where you need help, connect with me and let's chat!


bottom of page