Interviews mit Referenten

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Designing for emotional experiences

Efrat Friedland, founder of Materialscout, believes that the emotional bond between users and their space is important in designing interiors.

What is your presentation about?

I titled my lecture ‘Designing for emotional experiences’ as I would like to emphasize the importance of creating an emotional bond, desire and enjoyment between the user and the product or space.

We have all seen futuristic interior designs of mobility products; however, we have no way of knowing if these will indeed be the final designs. What we do know is who will be using these products. Understanding the future users and consumers will help us bring values to the forefront of our products and brands, to create more meaningful and enjoyable experiences. This lecture will help you understand how to use materials and technologies to create an emotional bond with your product.

How do companies get to know their customers?

Brands use various tools to measure potential market acceptance before launching a product or a service. There are surveys that can be conducted online, focus groups, personal interviews and other observation methods. The results vary between quantitative (when a large group is evaluated) and qualitative (when personal interviews or focus groups are conducted). With big data, it is now easier than ever to collect quantitative information.

What sort of consumer information is collected?

The information collected normally focuses on the participants’ purchasing habits, hobbies, willingness to pay, social economic background, affinity to certain trends (sustainability, health, individualism, etc) as well as their personal details. Additional topics in question could be direct questions referring to a product or service, where existing customers can point out if they were/are satisfied with it, highlight issues and discuss future wishes.

How can materials and technologies be used to create an emotional bond?

Think about a dish you are served, at home or in a restaurant. The ingredients and seasoning used can either please you or not. Now, instead of food ingredients, we have materials. We perceive them with our senses as well. We see them, touch them, smell them… and either we find them enjoyable or not. They may remind us of something pleasant in our past; they may repulse us or we might remain indifferent to them. And the technology that is used to carry out the product, using its materials, is similar to the cooking method. You can take high-quality ingredients and ruin a dish with the wrong preparation.

How can companies design for emotional experiences?

Companies should invest enough effort into understanding their customers and make sure to ask the right questions. I highly value intuition in certain cases; however, when it comes to designing a mass-produced product or space, I would refrain from following intuition and personal taste. Listen to your customers, look around, observe and collect information. Additional ideas and tools will be discussed during my talk.

Don’t miss Efrat Friedland’s presentation at the Future of Automotive Interiors Conference Europe. More information about the conference and its most current line-up can be found here

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