Transforming Marketing Strategy into Product Design Guidelines: A Case Study on Teaching Undergraduate Sponsored Project

By Shu-Wen Tzeng.

Published by The Design Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

With the recession of global economy and the advantage of Internet technology, consumers nowadays are smart enough to choose the products with the highest Capability/Price Ratio (CP) value. The change of customers’ care from buying a product with the best specification to the experience of having the best bargain has shifted the function of an industrial design professional from a simple “form giver” to a “value provider”. Industrial design is now becoming an integrative discipline, service-driven, and experience-oriented, which means that product design needs to involve satisfying constrains, making choices, containing costs, and accepting compromises. Product designers who know how to incorporate marketing strategies, including product positioning, buying behavior, brand and price factors, distribution channel requirements and promotion planning into their design guidelines, will have more opportunity to be successful after the production results of a product. The integration of marketing into industrial design education is imperative to ensure that the design of the future will be successful and that graduating students will have the ability to tackle the current and emerging nature of product design.
A sponsored project, which brings a lot of constrains including channel distribution, product segmentation and price points provides the best opportunity for the senior industrial design students to formulate their own marketing strategies and execute them through product design activities. This paper will explore and demonstrate how a marketing strategy can be transformed into the product design guidelines within the educational design studio making creative projects more relevant while better equipping students for the real design world. Specific examples of approaches integrated into a 4th year sponsored design studio course will be illustrated.

Keywords: Industrial Design, Marketing, Design Education

Design Principles and Practices: An International Journal, Volume 4, Issue 2, pp.183-194. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 2.521MB).

Shu-Wen Tzeng

Assistant Professor, Department of Industrial Design, College of Architecture, Design and Construction, Auburn University, Auburn, Alabama, USA

Shu-Wen Tzeng received a bachelor of science in Industrial Design from National Cheng-Kung University, Taiwan and a master of industrial design from Auburn University. She worked for Darfon Electronics (BenQ Group) Design Center as a design manager with expertise in consumer electronics. Over the past nine years, she has received two IF (International Forum Design, Hannover, Germany) awards and three G-Mark (Good Design Award, Tokyo, Japan) awards. The research Professor Tzeng has undertaken at AU is informed by her professional experience and expertise in the area of product design and development. Her research interests are in the user interface design domain where user cognition and product semantics are of the utmost importance and the interaction design domain where end users interface with increasingly complex devices and seek for better user experience. Shu-Wen joined the Department of Industrial and Graphic Design at Auburn University as an assistant professor in 2008.


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