Long Live Experience Design
The Dutch say congrats on birthdays. Ridiculous, like it is somehow worthy for making it to another year. But sometimes to continue to live in spite of obstacles perhaps is an achievement in and of itself. Many are collectively in awe of the Queen Elizabeth, the late King of Thailand and me personally of my grandmother.
What does it take to be a brand that lives for decades or a century or two?
An experience. But the definition of a positive experience has long moved on from a smile and a willingness to help. Done right, the experience overshadows all of the marketing and communication messages employees and / or consumers receive. It’s the most powerful tool to deliver on promises already made.
At FITCH, we take a Brand and Human first approach to building experiences. We consider people’s journeys from arrival to leaving and at various times of the day. Beginning with the brand and the audience, we design future journeys to challenge conventions. Applied across the full gamut (Physical, Human and Digital) we consider “time well spent” (enjoyment) balanced with “time well saved” (achievement).
In the studio we refer to it as “aprons and algorithms”. Algorithms make experiences frictionless by removing pain points, while aprons re-insert some of the good friction in the way of emotion. To succeed with an enduring experience, you need both.
Recent work with SGX and Microsoft has challenged some of their conventions to progress their experiences. These brands are forward looking and designing experiences to unlock the potential of audiences.
When audiences are not happy with an experience, they demonstrate those feelings on obliging social-media platforms. Generation # knows how to make their feelings known #nothappy and will explore other options in a heartbeat.
Ultimately, people (be they customer or employee) are the brand experience.
By Simon Bell, Managing Director at FITCH SIngapore