How can Design Thinking be used in Marketing Agencies?

What is Design Thinking?

Design thinking is a buzzword nowadays. It is basically an iterative & solution based approach for creative problem solving. It involves understanding the user, designing & implementing a solution & then refining it to suit the end users’ needs. The process consists of multiple phases of execution which include:

Design Thinking

Empathize Define Ideate Prototype Test

How can Design Thinking be used in Marketing Agencies?

The basic idea of Design Thinking is to have a human-centered approach to problem solving. The idea encourages companies or marketing agencies (to be specific), to focus on their customers by using a relatable approach (i.e: to always know about the needs of their customers behind any requirement), this leads to better product/service delivery & even better alignment of internal operational processes.

Design Thinking is the secret recipe to success when you are working in a competitive service industry. You need to efficiently manage your time and human resources in order to succeed. Being a service provider, the only way you can succeed & grow is by understanding the demands and requirements of your customers.

Be customer-centred!

The idea is to put yourself in your potential customer’s shoes & think from their perspective. The focus on functionality and usability of your strategies, products & services should always be through the lens of the customer.

In Design Thinking, the key is to think what consumers think, feel what they feel and devise marketing strategies within your scope to satisfy those cravings. A kick-ass strategy or an extraordinary artwork means nothing if it does not compliment the needs of the customer or the customer is unable to understand it.

In my opinion, traditional research methods, like focus groups and surveys, can assist in incremental improvements, but these practices may not be sufficient as users may not be able to completely understand their own needs or demands because of their limited subject knowledge. Thus, they are unable to extract beneficial solutions.

Cross-functional collaboration!

Design Thinking requires discussion / collaboration between teams & swift communication with the customer. Bringing together designers, developers and marketers will enables people having varied skill-sets to analyze and work on the same problem together rather in silos. The creative thought process enhances and the chances to finding a solution skyrockets. This also creates a repository of strategic ideas those can be documented and saved for future implementations.

Creating buyer personas from your own end in isolation and simply ‘putting yourself in their shoes’ is not good enough. If you want to devise marketing strategies that are more relatable it’s important that customers are involved throughout in the thought process.

Ideate. Prototype. Test. Repeat!

Once the ideation is done and marketing strategies are planned it is should be prototyped and tested initially to ensure that the plan is working on the right target group with the right content and at the right time.

In order to make sure the strategies and designs are ready to be launched to the masses, it is very critical to get input from real users. You need to adjust your target audience for the minimal viable strategy – MVS (prototype) launch so that first-hand feedbacks are received and implemented.

After repeating the cycle you need to monitor the response whether the executed strategies are being accepted by the end users or not.

Design Thinking at Digital Eggheads:

Marketing teams should work together by using a Design Thinking approach to solve customer problems which would ultimately result in growth of businesses. We learnt this through our past experiences which helped us create profitable growth for our clients through our digital strategies.

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About the author

Safeer E Hussain has a strong background in entrepreneurship and had successfully run two startups before founding Digital Eggheads. In his pastime, he loves working on projects related to Artificial Intelligence (AI) and robotics.

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