What's the difference between Marketing and Design?

Your Marketing Sucks

Most businesses marketing sucks. It's OK to admit it, that's the first step to fixing your problem. Most businesses idea of marketing is a tedious combination of blind advertising and internal struggles from members thinking they know whats best based on outdated ideas.

It all begins with your product. If you don't have a great product it doesn't matter how much marketing and advertising you invest in it. But a good design can make all the difference. The best approach for working with a new product involves design thinking.

In today's high-tech, start-up communities–design thinking is well understood and appreciated. It's not about marketing vs design. True, marketers and designers have different mindsets but the real difference is in how they approach finding a solution to a problem.

Design thinking is not just good marketing. It’s a fundamentally different way of approaching problems within your business.

The Strategies

In marketing, you put people into a collective so that you can communicate with them as efficiently as possible. With design, you see people more as individuals that you want to inspire or impress then you use that information to reach others.

The most important part of design thinking is starting with the user and working backwards.

Design thinking refers to design-specific cognitive activities that designers apply during the process of designing.

Putting it all Together

Honestly, you still need traditional marketing strategies to tell a good story, but you need to write the story first. If you start too early with the traditional approach–you're asking, What will please the most people just enough to buy our product? when you should be asking, How can I impress that one person so much that they tell other people about it?

Try it for yourself by using sites like www.gamestorming.com or try some empathy techniques like user observation and anthropology.