Monday, 15 October 2012


The role that Design can play in the Indian business context ranges from being a strategy, to becoming integral to the Design of processes in business, and finally being an expression  of the brand – in this way the power of design evolves into Designomics by touching all aspects of the business that aid business growth.

I am happy to see this awareness for the value that Design can drive permeating all aspects of our business consciousness.

One of the first correlations to design in the marketing context is brand identity, which was once articulated as logo Design. But today, businesses are deeply aware  that a logo change is not just about slapping on a Design, but has to be driven from the core of the organization.  It comes from the business & management strategy, needs to integrate with growth plans, and thrives under internal custodians who will help the brand expression evolve, before taking it to the world outside. This transformation into the external expression and messaging translates into the corporate position, which can be designed to be sustainable across diverse stakeholders and over a reasonably long period of time.

The creative interpretations of this corporate identity has now begun to permeate all business processes.

Knowing that product experience and differentiation is imperative to building loyalty, companies have begun to  root their very offerings in a Design heritage that helps differentiate the product offering and experience. Design thus becomes a strategic tool drives product differentiation as well as competitive advantage, thus bringing in returns and helping companies Designomise.
The last mile of customer engagement, which used to be primarily retail in the consumer context has evolved today. It ranges beyond  product touch and feel into online or tele-shopping  experiences. Complicating that further is the high probability of the brand needing to succeed in a multi-brand environment. This is where retail Design or usability of the virtual set-up can make the critical difference between a conversion or an abandoned cart.

Enough and more has been written and spoken about the exploding digital world. Communication that is only one-way is doomed from the word Go. Consumer engagement, the right interpretation of opinion and sentiment, and a virtual communication system that can keep the customer engaged starting from social searches right up to the payment gateway or other decision  points  is critical to successful communication strategy execution. And this new system of communication design is creating new gods who understand not only the basic principles of communication, but also the technologies that can make it succeed in this brave new world.

And this is where our academia can play an important role. The recognition of Design Management  as a strategic tool and a discipline in management education sharpens the way in which the business mind looks at systems and processes. Management and Design colleges have recognized the need for rigor in this important marketing domain, and are seeding talent that will become integral to the evolving landscape.

As a Designomics evangelist, I am heartened to see organisations becoming practitioners of the design movement and integrating it into business practices. Design is a conceptual and strategic activity, and not just the creative expression of the brand – it is the creative promise of the overall business proposition.

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