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Developing Ideas and Design Concepts
Illustration by John Hersey
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Using storytelling to determine core values


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Developing Ideas and Design Concepts

with Craig Smallish

Video: Using storytelling to determine core values

What are core values? As the name implies, core values are those important feelings or beliefs that a consumer may relate to a product or service. Core values can be challenging to determine, but by crafting stories that involve the product, we can often unearth them and gain a better understanding of how the product can impact or influence a person's life. We can then develop those stories as a means to communicate those values to consumers.
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  1. 8m 45s
    1. Welcome
      1m 12s
    2. The importance of the original idea
      2m 50s
    3. What is concepting?
      2m 4s
    4. Demystifying "the process" in the creative process
      2m 39s
  2. 8m 48s
    1. Working with clients
      4m 14s
    2. Defining the project
      3m 0s
    3. Defining the project obstacles
      1m 34s
  3. 7m 44s
    1. Doing your research
      2m 22s
    2. Avoiding the pitfalls of mediocrity
      3m 28s
    3. What is a concept plan overview?
      1m 54s
  4. 11m 2s
    1. Using storytelling to determine core values
      3m 33s
    2. Using questions to distill the core values
      3m 46s
    3. Determining core values
      3m 43s
  5. 8m 59s
    1. Using the free-association process
      3m 39s
    2. Starting with seed phrases
      2m 55s
    3. Using the power of collaboration to increase ideas
      2m 25s
  6. 9m 48s
    1. Honing your ideas
      4m 20s
    2. Reviewing your descriptive words and sketches to find the best ideas
      2m 29s
    3. Experimenting with your ideas
      2m 59s
  7. 8m 2s
    1. Maintaining a diversity of ideas
      1m 0s
    2. Using search engines to fuel ideas
      4m 50s
    3. The rough concept retrospect
      2m 12s
  8. 9m 48s
    1. Defining the rough sketch
      4m 34s
    2. Visually defining your ideas
      2m 57s
    3. The strength of iteration
      2m 17s
  9. 5m 16s
    1. What is 180-degree thinking?
      2m 46s
    2. Demonstrating the approach
      2m 30s
  10. 9m 29s
    1. Defining the revised sketch
      3m 25s
    2. Demonstrating the approach
      3m 46s
    3. The importance of exploring variation (perspective, media selection, and stylistic approaches)
      2m 18s
  11. 6m 36s
    1. Defining the refined sketch
      2m 23s
    2. Demonstrating the concern for detail
      4m 13s
  12. 5m 3s
    1. Revealing the final concept "comp" solution
      3m 19s
    2. Reflecting on the process path
      1m 44s

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Developing Ideas and Design Concepts
1h 39m Appropriate for all Aug 16, 2013

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

After landing a client, the designer's first chore is to communicate and develop the initial idea, whether it's a storyboard for a film or ad, or a multifaceted marketing campaign for a product or service. Learn how to transform a client's request into a presentable concept in this course. Craig Smallish walks through the development process for various creative scenarios, from assessing the client and the scope of the job to free-associating and sketching your ideas. Learn to create descriptive copy to accompany your visuals and create iteration after iteration of your design. Finally, Craig shows how to choose your strongest idea through a process of refinement.

Topics include:
  • What is concepting?
  • Working with clients
  • Doing your research
  • Determining the core values of a product or service
  • Using free association
  • Building the written descriptives
  • Using search engines to fuel ideas
  • Flipping your ideas 180 degrees
  • Creating a rough sketch
  • Defining the refined sketch
Subjects:
Design Design Skills Design Business
Author:
Craig Smallish

Using storytelling to determine core values

What are core values? As the name implies, core values are those important feelings or beliefs that a consumer may relate to a product or service. Core values can be challenging to determine, but by crafting stories that involve the product, we can often unearth them and gain a better understanding of how the product can impact or influence a person's life. We can then develop those stories as a means to communicate those values to consumers.

The key is reaching the consumer by connecting with their needs or touching their emotions. For example, if we think about the product antiperspirant. We can assume the average consumer probably doesn't care how it stops perspiration, but they need to believe they'll feel confident in that important meeting they're going to later that day. Even that fragment of a story quickly tells us that trusting and believing, and feeling confident are important core values related to antiperspirant.

The storytelling strategy gives us a chance to stand in someone else's shoes in any number of different scenarios where the product plays a role. The direction the story goes is entirely up to us as it unfolds, our aim is to identify those emotions that our character may be feeling. The frameworks that we create for our stories are nearly limitless, and each different story we create has the potential to render different emotional feedback.

I'll show you what I mean, but first, you'll need to follow me into the kitchen. Take this floor cleaner, for example. If we compose a little story where this product plays a role, it can help us find some core values. Let's say, I'm a late 30s, single working mom, and I've just finished cleaning my kitchen floor. I'm hosting a dinner for my boss and colleagues, and they're going to be here in less than an hour. Wow, this floor looks incredible.

Everything is in its place, and I'm feeling very confident about tonight. And the promotion I'm up for next month. Even that little segment of the story, I just crafted, turned up some worthwhile core values. By putting myself in her shoes, I can actually begin to sense certain things like, a feeling of confidence and of being at the top of my game, because, my home is looking great. That, and my colleagues will be amazed at my ability to keep everything under control.

And because of my confidence, I'm feeling like I could really have a good shot at that promotion they're offering later this month. Large or small, the role of the floor cleaner as my supporting cast member, was important to extracting those core values. There's hundreds of little stories just like that one. Each can give us a unique perspective through the eyes of another individual. Each one offers the potential for a concept. Virtually, every product or service has core values, but it's up to the creator to search them out.

Using the storytelling technique, gives us a chance to look beyond the literal or the obvious. Ultimately, we can begin to see what we're searching for. And visualizing core values through the eyes of another can act as a creative catalyst all on its own.

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