Last month, Stylus hosted their first Decided Future Summit. Daan Roosegaarde opened the event with a lecture that explored how design and creativity can solve complex problems that societies face as they navigate the uncertain landscape of the future. It was a sentiment that was echoed in our post why brands must hold festivals.
At this cross-industry event covering fashion, beauty, wellness, lifestyle and luxury, it was clear that design is a tool for empowerment.
Through considered visual direction, brands have the capacity to generate change through a soft-powered sell.
We just have to think of the Design Museum’s exhibit: Hope to Nope to see how visuals can reflect societal attitudes and inspire movements.
Fundamentally, in order to generate change, brands must respond to consumer expectations, needs and attitudes. By consequence, brands are an embodiment of societal values. Through co-creation and consumer engagement, brands become democracy drivers. In short, they are manifesto makers.
The summit explored how sustainability and the health of the environment is an urgent concern. It was noted that two-third of consumers are willing to pay more for sustainable products. A statistic that nods to our post regarding the rise of the aspirational elite. Additionally, inclusivity and diversity amongst all consumer groups were prevalent.
However, as retail designers and brand strategists, topics such as sustainability and inclusivity can no longer be deemed as trends.
Being a brand today means having a voice. So how can brands use that voice?
It is no longer enough to design to create something visually pleasing. Empowering change is the currency. Through design, communication and positioning, brands can shape the future.
Design for a better future.
Consider how your brand can become a manifesto maker and inspire change. Tap into shared values and consumer co-creation.
Consider the soft sell. How can your brand use design as a means to generate conversation and inspire change?