July 31, 2018

Customer Experience and the Future of Design

Design’s role is changing with the times, and I’m seeing it first-hand as AT&T re-energizes its focus on Customer Experience.

Confession: After years as part of creative teams inside the entertainment industry, I know too much about how the sausage gets made. I know, for instance, that creativity can happen in a “design bubble” where ideas may get lightly vetted for whether the message is as clear, or effective as it should be.

I also know that creative teams are often aligned based on skillset — do you do video? social media? print? web? — and operate like independent kingdoms even at the Creative Director level. And if these teams don’t play well together, the work can splinter as the teams lose sight of the customer experience from a marketing perspective.

Then, the cracks start to appear.

This’ll show up when a network is launching a new program. When the commercial on television doesn’t look like the magazine ad doesn’t look like the website doesn’t look like any of the ads on third-party websites.

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January 8, 2018

Rebuilding a Broken Digital Pipeline

Summary:

After jumping in to salvage a crash-and-burn 80-hour product request, I spent six months reinventing a complex digital pipeline that spanned multiple creative and business units. With new processes, organizational change, and automation, the results were off-the-charts amazing.

Sometimes the Pipes Will Just Burst. Without Warning.

Last March I found myself halfway across the country buffing my brain at the Adobe Summit in Las Vegas. The conference was pretty much over for the day, and just as I was getting into happy hour… a panicked call came from the home office in New York.

My team had just received the Mother of all Job Requests — at the end of a grueling week producing digital marketing and web pages for a new iPad on att.com. Then, WHAM! Out of the blue, another device manufacturer decided to make a major product launch of its own — and my team was called back into action.

The upshot was that we had six working days to produce about 2,750 product image assets for our e-commerce catalog. One of our in-house client/partners had placed the order, with a hard deadline. They would not give us more time to do the work, even though I begged.

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