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Prosperity Through Design

Robbie Robertson, founder of design consultancy Mash Up, recently spoke at the Design as Strategy Forum, and was one of the few speakers to address how design can sustain prosperity.

Prosperity Through Design


September 3rd, 2014

People interpret prosperity differently. It is guided by where we live, what we do and how we live. At Good Design Australia’s recent Design as Strategy Forum, speakers talked about achieving prosperity through design and how we could collectively; identify triggers for positive social and economic impact. Companies such as Blackmagic Design and Fisher & Paykel highlighted the role of good product design in achieving prosperity as a community.

Product and service design cannot operate in silos any longer. There is a greater need for the two to integrate and create a seamless journey that delivers great experiences, resulting in positive engagement and brand advocacy.

In a retail sense, great experience is often confused with the application of multi-touchpoint or omni-channel strategy, and not enough importance is given to intuitively making people’s lives easier. Especially in Australia where 70% of customers shop using multiple channels. The physical, digital and brands spaces often operate in silo, focusing on the delivery, rather than the experience. The end result is often a broken narrative across different spaces such as the store, online portal, social media pages, home delivery service or even the parking lot.

In a digital age where most stores validate or end the journey that started online, customer experience needs to be elevated to connected experience®. We need to take a step back to analyse how to create great experiences that make people’s lives easier.

Take 107 year-old sneaker brand Nike as an example. The brand has reinvented itself as a leader in delivering connected experience in the US by engaging with customers where they are and focusing on conversations rather than on using new media in traditional ways. Channel strategy for Nike is not the end, but the means to the end.

A lot will change for retailers in the next three to five years as brands adapt to evolving behaviours of a growing population. Showrooming will become the norm. Channel agnostic thinking will become instrumental to creative, sustainable and cost effective solutions that overcome retail challenges. Strategic design will go beyond visual aesthetics to great experiences. Connected experience will be a reflection of our behaviours where integration between physical and digital spaces becomes a way of life.

Most importantly, in a world where we are bombarded with messages, content, choices demands and complexity, simple usefulness will make our lives better. Making people’s lives easier is the new prosperity.

Mash Up

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