Sensory and Experience Design Concepts

The essence of good advertising and its big brother marketing,
is creative story telling; stories presented effectively,
inform, persuade, and penetrate our consciousness based on
their ability to tap into our sensory experiences. There has
developed over the last few years two new approaches to design
that acknowledge this powerful aspect of human nature: Sensory
and Experience Design.

The implications of Sensory and Experience Design can be found
in everything from product development to package design. When
we talk about SenEx Design we are talking about how real people
react to their experience with products and marketing
presentations.

We experience the world through our senses: sight, sound,
touch, smell, and taste. Stand in a supermarket and watch
people shop for fruit and vegetables; they pick them up,
squeeze them, turn them over and over looking for flaws, smell
them, and if the store keeper isn’t looking they may even have
a taste. When people buy a car, they look at the specifications
listed in the brochure, but they still go to the showroom, kick
the tires, run their hands along the shinny new paint, smell
the leather interior, and take that sucker for a test drive to
see how she handles. It’s all about experiencing the product
through our senses – it’s that sensory experience that becomes
embedded in our memory.

To date most companies have lagged in their efforts to
implement these new SenEx marketing communication approaches on
their websites due to their obsession with search engine
optimization issues that focus on the volume of traffic rather
than the quality of the marketing message. Business seems to be
stuck in a circulation-based advertising and mass-market mindset
that runs contrary to the Web’s niche market ‘Long Tail’ nature
and its ability to communicate by presenting information that
appeals to a variety of senses.

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