follow me on Twitter

    Arne van Oosterom's Posts - WENOVSKI design thinkers network

    Now on WENOVSKI design thinkers network

    Friday, December 21, 2007

    Business of Design Week Hong Kong 2008

    This years Business of Design Week (BODW) was held in Hong Kong from the 10th until the 15th of december. The BODW is Asia’s leading international conference dedicated to design, brand and innovation. This years BODW partner country has been Italy and next year the honour has fallen to the Netherlands.

    DesignThinkers was asked by the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs to create a visual identity to function as a banner for the entire Dutch contribution which has been given the title: 'Open Minds'. Besides that we were asked to come up with a concept on how to create anticipation around the announcement of the Dutch participation in 2008 at this years BODW.

    We kept it nice and simple and let visitors of the BODW take a sneak peak at what the Dutch have to offer. Concealing rather than displaying. The curiosity of the people of Hong Kong did not let us down.

    New agency

    In april of 2007 Marjo Staring and I started DesignThinkers. A creative 'service design' and branding agency. We started the agency realizing that something is about to change. Something big.

    New technological development, the growing importance of the service economy in the west and the changing expectations of people towards services were some of the developments that fueled our unrest. We kept thinking: are we still using the right tools? What do all these new developments actually mean?

    I've always had a hard time distinguishing between Image, identity, branding, marketing, communications, public relations and what have you. Can't it all be summed up with the word relationhip-building? At least that word I can understand. It actually means something. In fact it probably means more than most organizations can handle.

    A relationship is something you have to work on, it's never a one-sided story. Both parties have their responsibilities. And you can't be in a meaningful relationship with someone you don't know, don't like or just distrust. It sounds so simple but we all know, a good healthy happy relationship takes stamina and hard work.

    This focus on creating a real meaningful relationship with your costumer is growing in importance if you are selling a product but, needles to say, it is absolutely crucial if you are providing a service.

    This is the foundation on which we started DesignThinkers.