Lesson 10 – The KISS Principle


    One day, I was lying back in my chair with the Muzi product leaflet opened and covering my face. Jose saw it. He smiled, "Yuan, I see that you kept reading this numerous times, so I believe that by now you must have learned everything by heart, right?"


     I took the leaflet off my face and burst into laughter. I knew what he meant.  

    "People tell me they love my blog and my music choices very much, but they complain about the pricing, saying that my tea is a little bit expensive." I said. 


    To my surprise, Jose seemed happy to hear that, "Good, all Muzi branded products should be a little bit expensive, as long as people can afford it and they feel it is not too expensive. " 

     "I know I know…But…" I was distracted. 


     Jose bent down and looked at me, "Yuan, we already had numerous conversations about your pricing. And I kept telling you that you are selling a brand, not a tea. Tea is tea, what can you change? But we are in the 21th century and if you want to distinguish yourself from the others you must offer some real added value to the traditional product you are selling. This is called building a brand. And when you build a brand, the price is a key component of the branding and it is also a very strong way to protect the brand itself. Please look at how much work we have done to build the Muzi brand. We have created the design, we have given life to your blog with all its creativity and so many beautiful things which represent damn hard work. Your Muzi brand deserved to be a strong and beautiful one." 

     I was silent.


    Jose came even closer to me and said softly, "Yuan, whatever you do it is your project and I respect you. So please, tell me, what are you trying to accomplish by keeping revising and modifying your pricing over and over again?" 

     I sighed and put the leaflet aside. "I am considering to offer a 20% off on big quantities like 500g which means that if you buy 500 grams of tea you can get a 20% rebate." 

    " OK, it's reasonable, buy more, save more." Jose said.


    "Well, I am also considering to add a second-level of tea which means that there would be two quality levels of the same tea. Now we have the No.1, so we could add a No.2. Hence the choices of products would be doubled and the pricing could be lowered down accordingly."


     Jose sighed a deep sigh, "If it was my project, Yuan, I would not do that. Muzi should always be the No.1. You forgot what you kept saying throughout the whole last year——Muzi tea will be the best tea you could get at a reasonable price. Why would you want to add another product line, let alone 12 different lower quality teas."


     "Because…" I had no strength to keep talking and then covered my face again with the leaflet.


     "Yuan, it is sad to see you like that. I feel the pricing problem is hurting you now and I don't like it. But I want you to understand something very important. Muzi is definitely the most beautiful and elegant tea brand in China now. Because of that very strong branding, nobody can do the tea business like you, and even more with your blog. You are writing your tea blog every fucking day. Who could do that? You are giving much more to the others than what the others are willing to give you. So you don't need to compare yourself with your competitors because you are doing business in two different ways – branding and blog – which means that you are not even in the same market. You need to develop your niche market and build your Muzi followers. You need to see the problem clearly and the problem is not your pricing. Your real challenge is to find proper ways to make people know that you exist; design a strategy to interact effectively with your market, and build the right channels."


     I kept listening to him under the leaflet, not moving.



     "So when you can see your challenge clearly, then you need to put something as your priority No.1 …which is definitely not adding new product lines. You are a small company and you need to grow as a small business first. I believe that now your hands are already full, why would you add more troubles and a lot of pressure on your shoulders. Go with what you have and make a success with it. " Jose paused, and then asked me, "Yuan, there is a golden rule about doing business in my society, have you ever heard of it before?"


     I took the leaflet off, "What? What is the golden rule?" 

     Jose said, "It is called "The KISS Principle." 

     I sat back and laughed."Hahaha…" 

     Jose smiled and waited for me, "Oki, I am glad to see your beautiful smile again. Well, can I keep talking?" 

     "Yes, please…" I waved my hand to him.  

     Jose said, "The KISS principle" means Keep it Simple, Stupid."  

     "Wow…" I stopped laughing and began to feel it was so deep.  

     "Yuan, and I am telling you it is a universal golden rule." Jose said, calmly.


     Sigh… Jose should have told me that at the very beginning because maybe I wrote too many things in my blog today which goes against the golden rule "Keep it Simple, Stupid."    



02/08/2010 08:08 分类: 评论(2) 阅读()

2条回应:“Lesson 10 KISS Priciple”

  1. In fact, the KISS Principle is truly universal because it can be easily applied to any human interaction you can think of. Easy to understand and even easier to remember, it is a clever way to simplify otherwise complicated situations and it will never let you down. Antoine de Saint-Exupery, the french philosopher, summed it well when he wrote “It seems that perfection is reached not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” – Jose

    • “Perfection is reached not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” hahaha, thank you, Jose.


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