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Opinion: Importance of design in the digital world – ET BrandEquity

Importance of design in the digital world.

By Radha Ghai

There’s no denying that digital is rapidly becoming the new black. The media landscape is transitioning from the legacy mix of usual suspects like Print, TV and OOH to the more immediate digital platforms including the all-pervasive SoMe. At any giving moment, there is an onslaught of digital content, paid or otherwise, jostling for attention on ever shrinking screen sizes. Digital is the new democracy. Unfortunately it’s also the new clutter creator, manifesting itself in the shape of multiple distractions, each just a click away. Therefore now, more than ever, we need good design to separate the grain from the digital chaff.

But for design to be truly effective, regardless of the media it finds itself in, there’s one key caveat. It’s not about paying lip service to mere cosmetic concerns. after, all, design is the medium to deliver the message and when applied consciously, it can be a potent digital tool. The judicious use of colours, typography, interactive motion design and messaging architecture can carry the message far above the sea of sameness in the tightly packed digital environment. Be it a banner, a customised app, an influencer-enabled SoMe campaign, sharp design thinking is what informs and convinces customers further down the digital sales funnel.

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Her are some design principles that any brand would do well to observe in the digital universe.

1. Thoughtful Design
Thoughtful design refers to the idea that design should never be for design’s sake. It should be shaped through the filters of the marketing task-at-hand, valid consumer insights and the nature of the digital media itself. Applied effectively, it can go beyond ‘likes’ and generate tangible marketing objectives.

2. Being Unique
With so much content available online, there’s a need to be different and have a unique voice. That requires a deep understanding of the visual medium and language. Quite often, a lot of good ideas on digital platforms go unnoticed due to lack of design expertise and knowledge.

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3. Simplicity in Design
Achieving simplicity in design is never that simple. A great design is always executed with ease and showcases the brand message with utmost confidence while removing any convoluted messages. This becomes even more challenging in the digital environment where the digital screen itself is your greatest competitor.

These are exciting times for designers. As trends and technologies move at a rapid pace, this presents unique opportunities for designers. Also, Graphic Design today is no longer restricted to just one medium. Each media platform requires a bespoke design language as it’s no longer feasible to simply adapt one key asset across all platforms. Hence the need for effective design to become the beacon that can navigate any brand through the choppy digital waters.

The author is a senior partner and creative director at Alok Nanda & Company. Views expressed are personal.

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