Tuesday, November 4, 2008

"Good Design is Good Business"

The quote "Good Design is Good Business" was mentioned in class, and it is something that I firmly believe. Thomas Watson first said this in the 1950's. He was the American President of IBM. Design has grown drastically since then, and I think more and more companies are starting to agree with Watson. The most successful of companies have strong corporate identities, and branding that remains consistent. A good example of a strong identity is in the recent election. Barack Obama invested a lot of money in developing an identity for himself. He used it consistently everywhere his name showed up, whether it was on his website, bumper stickers, television commercials, advertisements, etc. And he ended up winning the presidential election! Of course, this was not the only reason that he is going to be the next president, but his branding was very appealing, and i think it grabbed the attention of the younger voters. I certainly think it helped him a lot! Apple is another good example. Their iPod ads using the black silhouettes of people dancing while listening to their iPods have grabbed the attention of many. The great ads, combined with the great design of their products has lead them to be the leading seller of music players across the globe. 

If you go to any major companies website, 9 times out of 10, you will see a strong corporate identity usually through use of color and a logo design. I think it is hard for anyone to take a company seriously that has a sloppy website and poor design. Good design is Good Business.

1 comment:

April G. said...

I found a series of three great articles on this topic, starting here. http://www.dmi.org/dmi/html/publications/news/ebulletin/ebvsepmm.htm

Thinking about good design - We as designers know what good design is, and I think that we'd like to believe that in general, consumers can spot good design as well. But how important is it, really, when they make their purchasing decisions. Method brand cleaning products have a great identity, but in today's economy, will someone buy a cheaper product that might work just as well because of the price, vs. the design? But, then again, would a comparable product with a poor design come off as being comparable?

Defining what "good design" is and how the public perceives it has always been intriguing to me. Studying the history of design has helped me to understand some pieces that maybe I just didn't get before. But on the other hand, a good design needs to have more than a great message behind it, it also needs to be understood and accepted by the public. If a designer comes up with an amazing piece that is praised by the design community, but does nothing for the general public, how successful is that design?