Books: The Human Brand – How we relate to people, products and companies

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I just finished reading „The Human Brand“ written by social psychologist Susan T. Fiske and Chris Malone, a Brand consultant. I have to admit: I’m a huge Fan of Susan Fiskes’ work in social psychology since the stereotype content model and the dimensions of warmth and competence were basically introduced to our course during the first semester in psychology. It’s based on solid research and it helps to explain how we perceive different people and form those implicit cognitive stereotypes which can result in emotional prejudices.

The basic outcome of this book is, that we relate to companies, products and brands as if they were humans – which means we have implicit feelings towards them which will result in trust (or not) and customer loyalty (or not). It tells us why a short termed, profit-based approach – which we can often find in the field – may become some sort of „death sentence“ to businesses, especially in the digital age.

There are a plenty of well researched real world examples and case studies which are fun to read. The book covers only basically user interfaces in the terms of warmth and competence too (like: Computers as social actors). Its not the main topic but you can adapt the findings easily to design strategy, for example.

I highly recommend this book to everyone who is working in the fields of User Experience Consulting or Design strategy, brand consulting or marketing and to business owners/CEOs.
This is definitely not some shady „Guru“ bullshit book filled with senseless noise and nice sounding buzzwords – nope: this one is in my opinion a well-researched must-read and it contains a paradigm shift for marketers and consultants.

If you have some time, in this video the stereotype content model is explained, too (>1hr and sadly bad sound)

And the books short marketing video:

Intercultural Aspects of Interface Design – or: Know who you’re targeting.

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Did you ever wonder what to consider when designing for websites which has to be rolled out in different countries with very different cultural backgrounds like e.g. USA, China and Russia?
Since we were faced with that topic in one of our recent projects and did a culture research for one of our clients, I wrote an article about that on the Geekettez website.

You can read it here: http://www.thegeekettez.com/intercultural-aspects-interface-design

Design means strategy. Deal with it.

We at the Geekettez Studio want to write a little bit more about what we’ve learned so far during our daily work and about our design process and yes, our ‚philosophy‘ as (Interaction) Designers.

Since ‚UX Design‘ should in best case merge User Needs and Business goals – and there are many businesses which cannot clearly express or tell what exactly their objectives and goals are, or why People should choose them over their competitors – I have now written an article on our blog about Design decisions based on (taaadaaa!) Business Goals. It’s called ‚Design means strategy. Deal with it‘.

You can read it here:
http://www.thegeekettez.com/design-means-strategy-deal/

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