The Design Advantage Drives Business Results

Today we’re in London for our Design Advantage Forum, where we’re joined by hundreds of the UK’s best creative, IT and digital marketing minds to talk about driving business results through great design. In the new reality of multiple devices and screens, people are engaging with content in a very different way which has far-reaching implications for brands in how they interact with their customers.

To help us better understand what those customers actually want when it comes to content, we recently commissioned a global study on ”The State of Content: Expectations on the Rise”. Two-thirds (68%) of the respondents admitted they will stop engaging or switch to another device if what they are looking at is poorly designed, whilst 41% are willing to hit the stop button if the content is too long. Incredibly, in the UK, people also said that they are now using an average of five devices every day, with 85% regularly using more than two devices at any one time.
This new dynamic of how we consume content naturally has a major impact for brands wanting to capitalise on the vast new opportunities we have to reach our audiences. It means that content and connections must be meaningful in order to break through. So how can organisations adapt to this new reality?

We believe the key is in putting design front and centre of the content strategy. We know from our research that people are becoming more selective about the content they view as they find themselves inundated across their many devices.

As a result, people are demanding more – 58% prefer to view content that is ‘beautifully designed’, 72% are more likely to engage with a piece of content that looks good on the device they are using, whilst 47% like the personal touch and place a higher value on content that is tailored to their interests. Brands – including us here at Adobe – and content producers must meet these demands if they are to build compelling customer experiences and drive business impact.

I asked David Butler for his thoughts on this. David is the Vice President of Innovation at Coca-Cola Company and author of ‘Design to Grow: How Coca-Cola Learned to Combine Scale and Agility’, and he told me: “Our world is more complex than ever before making design even more critical. It’s predicted that by 2020, there will be over 25 billion connected devices. When you connect that with Adobe’s findings on content, it’s easy to see that things will only get more complex – not less. But design has the power to make this kind of complexity, less complicated. Good design makes content easier to create, consume and share. But good design doesn’t happen by chance – you must design on purpose. Simply put, the brands that embrace the full power of design will win and the others won’t.”

I couldn’t agree more with David’s sentiment. If content isn’t compelling or relevant, people are simply going to switch off. But, it’s undeniable that the opportunity for creatives and marketers to build new, incredible experiences is exciting – for both us, the consumers, and for their businesses in terms of competitive advantage. Ultimately, it’s what we call the design advantage.

Join the conversation via #DesignAdvantage.