This week we’re looking at why creative that lacks strategy is so underwhelming, and exploring the possibilities of interactive marketing—from data visualisation to storytelling.
Sian, Creative Strategist
Without strategy, creative is just beautiful or ugly
There’s something dangerous about Dribble. Don’t get me wrong, marketing itself as a show and tell for designers, Dribbble is a great platform to share work. But by no means does it take me back to the calibre of the weekly group critiques of my Uni days, established to rip your work apart from the inside out in order to train you to think about the reasoning behind every design decision you make, from concept to execution.
Dribble is dangerous because there’s no context for the work posted there. We have no clues to understand why things are the way they are. Without strategy, it’s just beautiful or ugly.
Which brings me to this:
“The life of a designer is a life of fight against the ugliness” is a terrible statement. Not just because it reads poorly (the ugliness of what?), but because it undervalues the role of the designer.
As a creative strategist, I’m of course concerned with how things look, and I am the first to defend the virtue of design eye candy. But there has to be a distinction between something that is perceived to be beautiful, and what actually is beautiful.
Let me explain. I am concerned with how things look, because how things look is my tool of communication. But that doesn’t excuse me using a shade of pink, just because I think it looks nice. Instead the real beauty comes from how you make a complex idea more accessible through creative–a solid reason behind why I’m using that particular shade of pink to support what I’m trying to say.
When designing websites, I’m most concerned with the experience of the user, and how we can support their journey through creative. The site has to be delightful, but in order for it to be delightful it has to be first and foremost usable and accessible (see the award winning UK Government site for accessibility first design). Beautiful but unreasoned design elements might actually get in the way more than help here, and instead the majority of the beauty comes from the experience.
The modern art magazine Frieze is a great example of beauty and beauty. This week it revealed it’s redesign, with the art direction aiming to make the magazine less beautiful. Why? Because the pristineness of how it currently looked didn’t reflect its content (find me a piece of conventionally beautiful modern art). Instead it’s now showcasing unconventional beauty–that kind of visual that’s more arrestingly beautiful because it’s ugly.
So yes, fight against ugliness, but remember it takes more than just a nice pink to make something truly beautiful.
Candice, Managing Director
Let’s explore the possibilities of Interactive Marketing
We live in a world where people have come to expect increasing engagement from businesses. Interactive marketing is an increasingly popular way for brands to develop more authentic relationships with their target audience, as well as help meet their needs, by triggering an action that relies on the end user responding to something.
An example of interactive marketing is: “Would you like fries with that?” when someone orders a burger, but it wouldn’t come when a person ordering a shake. The act of ordering one product triggers the action towards adding another product.
There are different types of interactive marketing, but depending on your brand’s needs, you can find one/some of them that will help drive engagement and add value to your business.
What are the most common types of interactive marketing?
- Polls, Quizzes and Assessments: NHS: One You quiz
- Calculators: Wonga
- Data visualisation: Washington Post 100 Times Gold
- Storytelling: Old Spice on Instagram
- Video: Bupa’s Body as a Band
What are the benefits to Interactive Marketing?
The benefits to interactive marketing can be significant to your business. It can help with increasing sales. It makes the end user feel like you understand their need, therefore increasing in customer satisfaction. It also helps drive personalisation.
Incorporate Interactive Marketing into your content strategy and find new ways to engage with your target audience.