MIMA – Collaborative Design

Google-0Though I did not know what to expect based on the topic of “Collaborative Design” – the event happened to be quite insightful – particularly for an average corporate marketer.

“Collaborative Design” is critical for organizations that might have many separate “parts” functioning as one unified experience from the perspective of a user.

An interesting point – a company with extensive internal teams (such as Google and Adobe) is wise to invite an outside consultancy to create a “tool set” for the internal teams to use.  The guide may not be followed religiously throughout all tools and experiences, but main elements of the too set should be uniform.

Google does not dictate design elements from a central point of view, however, Google managed to make the design “relatively consistent and very pretty.

Google redesign addressed the problem of lack of consistency among Google properties.  Prior to the redesign, the only consistent element was the Google logo.  The new design introduced the consistency, reinforced simplicity and defined the main elements across all Google sites.  Red – main action.  It is interesting to see that in some cases it might be a button (Gmail) or just an underlined button (search).

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Anything related to search was blue.  Anything related to sharing or social were green.  All additional elements of the page were grey, what clearly reinforces the simplicity of the design.

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Not all elements are used in exactly the same manner throughout the Google sites and applications.  However, the main structure is the same.

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An quite extensive account of the redesign gives additional insight into the process.

google-playAnother case study – creation of common elements of Adobe Touch apps – solved similar problem.  Adobe planned to create a series of apps based on its popular Adobe ideas.  The apps needed to have a degree of similarity to allow a user comfortable use of common elements in all apps.  A set of elements have been created (common tools, treatment, functionality) to allow developers of individual apps to concentrate on the specific app rather than basic elements of the interface.

Adobe

On designer worked on high-level pieces and provided the framework for the app development.

Interesting – this approach need to be generic enough and flexible enough not to restrict progress and learning, but from another side assure reasonable consistency.  I am hoping the industry succeeds in finding the right mix – as the rest of us – users – will be suffering if the industry won’t find the magic solution 😉

MIMA – The Top Ten Things Every Interactive Marketer Needs to Know About People

Very enlightening presentation and a little intellectual candy 🙂  The content represented 10 best points from 100 things every designer needs to know about people.  In many cases, marketers who bring new web sites to their audience do not think about the audience and use their own mental models (what can be different from the people for whom the site is designed).

  • People expect technology to follow human to human interaction rules. Content is currency.
  • The number on which people can concentrate at one time is 3-4 at a time.  If you give too many choices they will like it… but won’t buy anything.  Jam study – larger selection of jam choices encourage people to stop and try but not to buy.
  • People use mental models (many people will have different solutions which way to turn hypothetical faucet and how to write “A,B,C,D” in a circle.
  • People prefer objects with curves and not hard edges
  • Beauty is in the eye of the unconscious.  Split second reaction to the site determines how much people will interact with it. Aesthetics: orderly and clear.  Some degree of creativity, but not too much.  People like things that are a little unpredictable, but just a little.
  • Speaker and listened brains sync.  Video testimonials are very powerful.
  • There are week ties and strong ties.  Strong ties do not exceed 150 people – this is the maximum size of the strong group.  When starting an online community, decide if it will be a strong or weak community.
  • People are using a peripheral vision more to get the “gist ” of the scene.  Eye tracking tests central vision.
  • We are paying attention to human faces.
  • Brain processes the information in story format.

Marketers shall read 100 Things Every Designer Needs to Know About People (Voices That Matter)  and Neuro Web Design: What Makes Them Click?   Ooooh, they are on my reading list now…  🙂