HELLO to a new Chinese year – the year of the Ox. Marketing & horoscopes – Chinese or otherwise, archetypes, avatars, personas, tribes… When you are in business ‘pigeon-holing’ – grouping and naming potential customers – is a big deal. To try and find a way to talk to someone that; you don’t know, haven’t met yet (interacting on social platforms counts) – to give them the thing that you have, that they want – is a big deal. ‘Knowing’ your customer is the cornerstone of marketing. You need to be playing to the right crowd. And if you know, or can predict, which gig they want to go to next – you have sight of the Holy Grail.
welcome to the 21st year of the 21st century! 21 + 21 – that adds up to 42, my favourite number… …the meaning of life and everything (Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy), and in I Ching the hexagram means ‘increase’. It’s a time to expand, develop, be strong, be generous, to replenish, and use wealth and resources wisely for the greater good. If only.
Colour predictions are a big event, and Pantone is a major influencer. Fashion brands, makers and interior designers will be gearing up to be on-trend, because colour is such an important part of how we express ourselves. Colour can make us feel more comfortable, more assured, more attuned. And these two colours will be woven into our lives next year, hoping to change the mood of us all.
Simply this… I am giving thanks this week for four ‘oven ready’ (to quote Boris & a nod to ‘Turkey’) vaccines that are being readied to roll out.I am especially excited by the Oxford University/ Astra Zeneca vaccine that seems to be the most portable.I am full of new hope for 2021
Being in the business of branding, like most designers – the most difficult brand to create is your own. Even though you know your own clients, and the work you like to do, it’s still difficult to be objective about yourself. When you are working for a client, you are working towards a goal, usually a deadline for a brand, re-brand, or campaign. You’ve worked out and agreed a budget, you’re part of a team. So the only way you can effectively brand for yourself, is to become your own client, or hire another designer… which does work in large agencies, but not for any self-respecting consultant designer I know. Tantamount to cheating in an exam?!
The attention economy and our infinite appetite for distractions is the subject of a lovely RSA short and thought it was worth a share, and a rant! The talk is by James Williams from 2017 (the animation is new). The more I listened, the more I nodded.
We have had months of mojo mangling. Our boundaries between home and work have mingled. Is your mojo all fired up and ready for the rest of the year? … probably not. I’ve worked from my home studio for a long time, here are my tips to get your mojo on track 😉
Solving design problems is my thing. I like to research by reading the brief, having a chat, sometimes seeing how others have solved the problem… but the one thing I have to do is… sleep on it. By my bed you will find a sketchbook where I work through ideas before going to sleep, or to capture them as I fall into, or wake from, sleeping. If you can hold onto a question that you want to solve – your lovely brain has a whole night to try and figure out the answer for you.
If you’ve invested in your brand, or just have an unusual name, it’s good for you to hear it properly, and whoever is saying it, not to find out later that they’ve just spent an hour mis-pronouncing it and feel a bit foolish. Here is a LinkedIn top tip…