Industrial designers provide a unique perspective to a product’s embodiment, bridging the gap between engineering and marketing. Although the industrial design profession has existed for more than 80 years, it remains largely unknown by many people. Worse, it is underutilized by industry.
Industrial designers provide the conduit between marketing and engineering by interpreting concepts into visual embodiments of the new product. Unlike engineers who focus on function, performance, reliability and manufacturability, industrial designers focus their attention on the application and the user.
All products are designed to serve a purpose ultimately benefiting mankind. They should, therefore, be designed with a comprehensive understanding of the application and the user. These parameters directly influence marketing and sales. And, that ultimately affects corporate profits.
Industrial designers are educated to think about products in broad terms. Properly trained industrial designers study the market, understand the nuances of the application, visit sites where the product is to be used and, invest many hours researching user interface with the product. These insights provide an industrial designer with the foundation upon which product requirements and specifications are derived.
Attention to the product within its intended application is absolutely essential for a successful product launch. Studying how a user interacts with a product is fundamental to establishing design guidelines for product configuration, orientation and safety.
Strong Brand Identity Delivers a Consumer Advantage
Industrial designers are also responsible for creatively developing designs that are visually appealing to the consumer. And that perspective means products with a strong brand identity and a market advantage.
Creating a stylish concept that is eye-catching as well as functional is not an easy task. Good design must convey the right image for a product based on its market, customer, culture and corporate image. A successfully designed product will stimulate an emotional reaction with an individual, compelling them to prefer it over a competitive product. This defined visual image is usually synchronized with marketing strategies, advertising and promotional literature.
Well-designed and successful products are typically created with skill and attention to all levels of detail. The design specifications affect all aspects of the design including overall form, size, color and function. Other important considerations include engineering determinations about performance, tolerances, mold quality and choice of hardware.
Contributions of industrial designers starting from the beginning of a product design project will have a profound impact on the final design of a product. Successful integration of industrial design within the product development design cycle will lead to products that express well-proportioned, aesthetically appealing designs that communicate those qualities to the consumer.
It’s essential that these determinations by industrial designers are not lost during the development process. This is why design engineers, marketing specialists and manufacturing engineers understand the importance of maintaining each of these qualities.
Consider these ideas at the start of the design process for a new product. Consider using a reputable industrial designer as part of your design team. They can be especially effective if they also have a keen knowledge of rotational molding and the product market.
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