Strategic Design: find out why your company needs this innovation


Gone are the days when design was seen only as graphic art or as a "nice" complement to a company page or action. Technological innovations and digital transformation brought great changes in the market, and one of them was the emergence of strategic design.


What few people know is that this concept is much more than a simple aesthetic complement, but one of the key pieces for the strategic management of any company.


According to a study published in 2014 by the Harvard Business Review, companies that adopted design as part of their strategic planning had a significant performance compared to those that did not have design as a fundamental part of their strategies.


The study analyzed companies such as Coca-Cola, Apple, Nike, and Starbucks, among others that used strategic design as part of their corporate strategy, had their shares valued in the market with a performance around 228% higher than the businesses that did not adopt this design concept.


Want to learn more about the subject? Keep on reading and find out more about what strategic design is, how it works, its main advantages, and how to implement it in your company.


What is strategic design?


Strategic design is related to the creation of a brand, product, or service, completely oriented to thinking about the consumer's experience, in order to offer more complete solutions for their problems.


It makes use of traditional design methodologies and tools to meet the business objectives and goals, by means of trend analyses and internal and external data. Through this, decision-making is based on facts and figures, not on intuition and aesthetics.



It must be said that strategic design is an effective method for linking management, innovation, research , and design, redefining how problems are addressed, and identifying the actions that provide the most effective solutions.


How does strategic design work?


The basis of this concept is the collection of data such as market and consumers.


In order to achieve it, we base strategic design on the collection of information related to this data, inside and outside the organization.


The applications of this strategy are quite varied, and can be applied to issues such as


  •   Definition of the business vision
  •   Definition of the business model
  •   Identification of new business opportunities;
  •   Assisting in decision making;
  •   Policy strategies, products or services.



It should be noted that to start strategic design planning it is first necessary to understand the context in which the company is inserted, such as the market, customers, partners and behavioral trends, for example. 


To obtain this information it is necessary to use qualitative and quantitative research methods, preferably with ethnography and its application in design.


Benefits of strategic design


If you are thinking of implementing strategic design in your company, check out the main benefits that it can bring to your enterprise!


Stimulating innovation


Strategic design encourages innovation within companies, because it creates more creative solutions that provide an unforgettable customer experience.


Feedbacks also play a fundamental role, because through them it’s possible to find new ways to create different and, above all, creative actions.




In an extremely competitive market, it is essential to seek ways to highlight your brand. Design can be one of the most efficient solutions to achieve this distinction


For example, by providing a unique branding, , it is possible to generate greater added value for the company and thus create a competitive advantage.


Collaboration between teams


Another benefit of adopting strategic design is the incentive for teams to work together to find innovative solutions towards a common goal.


Optimized management


When strategic design is applied, the company's entire management is optimized, as the mindset changes and focuses on seeking more creative solutions and innovations, with the goal of delivering a more satisfying experience.


Overall, your company's entire management is optimized. After all, the mindset shifts toward a constant search for innovation and more creative solutions to deliver a more satisfying experience.


A greater integration in the processes generates more value, and thus the company is able to reduce costs and increase the return on investments.


A closer relationship


Finally, a benefit that is a direct consequence of all the above is the improvement in the relationship between company and consumer. The relationship becomes much healthier and closer.


The constant search for ways to improve the client's experience makes them feel more valued, and the loyalty of the user is certain.


What to do to implement strategic design?



Well, now that we know the importance of strategic design for the company's success, let's learn what needs to be done to apply it. Check it out below:


Understand your persona


Understand your client's main pains and needs in order to build and transmit the ideal message. And don't forget: this construction must have strategic design as its main pillar.


Create prototypes and tests


It is important to create experiments to test ideas. After all, every creative process is long and tests are needed to know if the idea is applicable, if it has the potential to work and to reach a satisfactory result.


These experiments also allow other people to get a taste of this resource and thus be able to give an accurate assessment of the applicability of the idea. 


Get qualitative feedback



Qualitative feedback lets the company know exactly what changes are needed to make its products and services a more satisfying experience.


A good way to accomplish this task is to regularly invite the company's customers so that they can test the products or services and leave their impressions, which can become valuable insights for product design.


It is worth emphasizing that the most important thing is not the quantity of these feedbacks, but their quality. Here, the main objective is to obtain constructive answers so that the company can improve a product, service, and even an internal process.


Getting closer to customers and making them participate in the creative process can greatly increase the chances of success of the strategy.


 Change the mindset of the company


The entire corporate structure is tuned to the same mindset, which is to offer an exclusive, unique, and satisfying experience to the customer.


In other words, strategic design transforms the organizational culture, making it further established and stronger. And that happens because it makes all employees, not just the designers, participate in the creative process, thinking about strategies, actions, and solutions to achieve the final result of the product or service.


Have lateral thinking


To have "lateral thinking" means to have an alternative way of thinking. In practice, it means avoiding linear thinking and looking for solutions that are creative, original, and capable of solving any problem.


If you want to implement strategic design in your company, you need to go beyond "doing more of the same" and think "outside the box.


Therefore, strategic design is essential for your company to stand out among so many competitors and get even more clients.


Finally, know that with a lot of planning and creativity it is possible to strengthen your brand's image and create a closer and more satisfactory relationship with consumers.


Now that you know what strategic design is, its benefits and what to do to apply this concept in your company's routine, it's time to call Able to get an even stronger image!