Leading with Design in Both Worlds

At Be One, we work with clients who are well-known and respected in the design community. We develop and activate social media and digital marketing strategies to get attention of architects, designers, installers and the end consumer As digital marketing professionals working with design clients, we attended the 50th year of Neocon - the largest annual commercial interior design show in North America - to learn and discover new trends developing in the industry.

Design affects all aspects of life and plays a major role in creating experiences, and experiences are central to successful digital marketing strategy.

“Can Design Heal?”
Unity Health Care, Gensler, and Sunbrella at Brentwood Health Center in the Washington DC area. Speakers Michael Crawford, Chief of Staff at Unity Health Care, and Bonny Slater, Health & Wellness Regional Leader Associate at Gensler, explained that zip code is a major indicator of overall health.

Their teams wanted to see what would happen if they took a health center in a sick zip code and provided a newly designed waiting room. They took into account factors including personal space, process, and connection. They invited people from the community to share their personal stories and opinions and participate in a poetry station and art installations. People expressed desire for opportunity, positive outlet, health education opportunities, and overall peace.

Key observations show that social support is essential to overall health. After the waiting room redesign, there was a 100% increase in communication from patients and a significant increase in enthusiasm. Patients shared the redesign made them feel better, more upbeat, comfortable, peaceful, and relaxed. However, Unity Health Care shared that this kind of intervention is not normally possible due to time and budget.

These findings on the transformative power of design are just as applicable to digital marketing as they are to the design world. The facts that people value their personal space, need clear processes, seek connection, want to be heard and understood, can and should be taken into account when planning and crafting digital marketing.

“The Connecting Circle of Color”
Leatrice Eiseman, Director of the Eiseman Center for Color Information & Training and Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute presented insightful and thought-provoking information on color trends and forecasting. Color selection can be easily taken as a given to a casual observer, but designers and marketers know that color selection can make a massive difference to experience. Even the slightest change in hue can have major implications, whether it’s the color of a wall or upholstery, or the color of a logo or landing page background. Designers and digital marketers must be equally thoughtful in their color choices. Eiseman’s talk reinforced and expanded upon these principles.

“Empowering Your Team”
Steve Hillis, the CEO of Empower Partners. He focused on leadership and his talk made it very clear that good leadership must be implemented through design. He spoke on the development of personal and professional goals and advocated that those goals must work together. Hillis focused on the humans behind the work. We are professionals and we seek to excel, but professionals each have unique personal needs.

One of the main takeaways he gave was burn the rule book and keep one rule - service the customer. Recognizing professionals’ personal needs and unique strengths encourages better service to our customers and more motivated, problem-solving mindsets. People who feel seen and personally valued perform at a higher level.

When done well, design and digital marketing will each improve daily life, but when done well in tandem, these specialties will create solutions for a world that demands high quality experiences and seeks greater personal connection.
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