The Enlightener Designing On Purpose_120601

By: Willis Whiteside, M.S., IDSA

Issue 120601 3rd / 4th  Quarter 2012

Designing On Purpose

When following the latest trends and successful companies we often look to the icons.
The Coca-Cola(TM) Company like most, was flat through the onset of the latest economic times.
But the company has recently been bubbling, having firmly embraced the power of focused Industrial Design influencing brand building and sales. When David Butler first started at Coca-Cola(TM), he changed the company’s perspective on design with a letter to his peers entitled, “Designing on Purpose.”  He expressed, “you can create value for the business through design.”

Where does value in design come from and how can it be effective?
Using a bright color, coming up with a clever product name, and then labeling the product as ‘designed’ doesn’t cut it.  Design does not sell by itself.  Design has to be smarter than a sales pitch.

To create value for a business or entrepreneur, design needs to dig deeper than on the floor sales and realize how connected the end result is; to not just the business and its brand, not just the process that got it there, but how connected one result is to the next.  Every image, brand, product, label, and communication is Design, connected and executed on purpose.  Creativity by nature is about growth, and “designing on purpose” allows your business to do just that, grow.

* Inspired from: David Butler VP Global Design, The Coca Cola Company “Designed on Purpose”: A strategy around three areas: brand identity, user experience and sustainability.
450 brands, 200 countries (10 million coolers and vending machines, 1.5 billion packages sold every day)
* Coca-Cola is a registered trademark of The Coca-Cola Company.

CoAuthor: Dustin Culbreth, Senior Industrial Designer

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