Digital innovation is everywhere, and as a result, traditional business empires will be destroyed and new leaders will emerge seemingly overnight. They will be stronger, faster and humanly relevant. A marketing movement has begun because customers expect a coherent experience regardless of how they connect with a brand. Today’s customers engage with brands through an ever-increasing array of touchpoints. Managing a coherent brand experience requires knowledge of customers and the relationship they want with brands.
So what’s the best business strategy for the networked experiential economy? Brands need to design integrated experiences that elicit emotion and drive engagement with customers across touchpoints, devices and platforms. This movement calls for a more user-centered and human-focused approach to designing new products and services, software, digital interactions and design concepts. This dynamic field is known as experience design – a practice that focuses on the design of end-to-end experiences across all touchpoints to generate sales and build brands irresistibility.
Why are we happy to pay for an expensive meal at our favorite high-end restaurant or a lavish weekend trip to Las Vegas, or pay real money for digital goods? Because they simply delight us. Brands are experiences. When a brand experience is designed with a human-centered focus, people do not think twice about paying a premium for that experience.
Companies that think about their brands, products and services as a holistic experience have been rewarded by their customers and the stock market. Just look at Apple. Apple is the definitive example of how to integrate a brand and its products and services to inspire millions and transform an industry. The stock market now places more value on design-driven companies than product-driven companies. Well-known brands, and even new ones, are in hot pursuit from Google, Samsung, Burberry to Uber, DropBox and AirBnB, because embracing experience design principles has made these brands more desirable and profitable.
By understanding human goals and behaviors, brands can design concepts empathetic to people. For brands to truly harness experience design, they need to become and act as digital inventors that serve specific human needs observed in culture. Innovative experience design requires that we look beyond received public opinion, benchmarks and familiar solutions to identify the deeper cultural connections. These concepts are becoming increasingly important to modern marketers today.
Peter Lau is head of strategy + experience at gyro Denver.
If you are passionate about creating humanly relevant and meaningful experiences for people while also delivering value to your organization, it’s time to explore how experience design is redefining how brands connect to people, and people to brands. Join gyro tomorrow, June 18, at the Digital Summit Denver from 1:15-2:15 pm MT to learn how brands can stay humanly relevant in a digital era. To learn more about the session, click here.