8 Responses

  1. dannyhotea
    dannyhotea at |

    My experience has been a mixed bag.

    On the one hand, I’m a slave to aesthetics. I love good type, strong grid and lovely graphics. On the other hand, I’m a zombie for usability/functionality.

    If I were stranded on an island and could have only one of the two, I’d go for function over form. And I think I’m not the only one.

    Case in point: google.

    I remember the Web before google. I absolutely abhorred using search engines. I felt taunted by the false promise of actually finding relevant information. Then google shows up. I heard about it. Tried it. Never tried another search engine again. Never.

    ‘Nother example: Apple.

    Apple marries function and form well enough to brand the experience. I’m a fool for the shiny (yet very usable) machines the make. At work, I have an iMac and a Dell PC side-by-side. I use the iMac for as much of my work as possible. At home, I use only Mac machines because I refuse to spend time debugging machine errors instead of getting things done and spending time with my loved ones.

    All in all, I find the separation of brand and experience ironic since there’s been quite a bit of talk about “experiencing the brand”. Am I nuts, or is that something you’ve heard about as well?

    Maybe the term “brand” is bolted to visual perception while the term “experience” is associated with touch or emotion. Hence the uni-sensory casting of the two. What if UXers (and other industry peeps) started talking more along the lines of mult-sensory branding? That might make room in people’s thinking for experiencing a brand.

    Reply
    1. Lis Hubert
      Lis Hubert at |

      Thanks for responding!

      I have heard a little talk about experiencing the brand, but I don’t think it’s reached the people that can use it the most yet, or maybe it has and they just don’t find the need to change their mindset. Either way, I love this response! I agree with the idea that if we as UXers start talking more about branding it could start to integrate the two (experience and brand) much more. I’m going to use this plan!

      Reply
  2. gabrielamoore
    gabrielamoore at |

    That’s a really interesting issue. Maybe I can give you an insight into how visual designers feel about what you’re saying. I started my career as a graphic design, and then moved on to visual design for the web, and I can tell you the graphic and visual designers, as web users, do visit and use websites because they look good, and not because they offer a good experience. We’re always looking for great looking websites, we enjoy them, we come back to them because of the way they look, and so we usually assume that other people feel that way too. It’s always hard for anyone who’s not a UX designer to realize that the way they feel about websites is not the way everyone, or even their users, feel. And i think the same goes for other web professionals. Web Writers visit websites with good copy, front-end devs like visit websites with beautifully written HTML. Maybe one important role for UX designers is to bring all that into perspective, and help people realize that they are not their users. What do you think?

    Reply
    1. Lis Hubert
      Lis Hubert at |

      A great point, and I can totally see where you’re coming from! This has given me a good deal of insight when working with other web professionals. I won’t use a site over again if the experience is crap, but I don’t really care if it is visually appealing. This is really helpful!!

      Reply
  3. Lis Hubert
    Lis Hubert at |

    Thanks for responding!

    I have heard a little talk about experiencing the brand, but I don't think it's reached the people that can use it the most yet, or maybe it has and they just don't find the need to change their mindset. Either way, I love this response! I agree with the idea that if we as UXers start talking more about branding it could start to integrate the two (experience and brand) much more. I'm going to use this plan!

    Reply
  4. dannyhotea
    dannyhotea at |

    My experience has been a mixed bag.

    On the one hand, I'm a slave to aesthetics. I love good type, strong grid and lovely graphics. On the other hand, I'm a zombie for usability/functionality.

    If I were stranded on an island and could have only one of the two, I'd go for function over form. And I think I'm not the only one.

    Case in point: google.

    I remember the Web before google. I absolutely abhorred using search engines. I felt taunted by the false promise of actually finding relevant information. Then google shows up. I heard about it. Tried it. Never tried another search engine again. Never.

    'Nother example: Apple.

    Apple marries function and form well enough to brand the experience. I'm a fool for the shiny (yet very usable) machines the make. At work, I have an iMac and a Dell PC side-by-side. I use the iMac for as much of my work as possible. At home, I use only Mac machines because I refuse to spend time debugging machine errors instead of getting things done and spending time with my loved ones.

    All in all, I find the separation of brand and experience ironic since there's been quite a bit of talk about “experiencing the brand”. Am I nuts, or is that something you've heard about as well?

    Maybe the term “brand” is bolted to visual perception while the term “experience” is associated with touch or emotion. Hence the uni-sensory casting of the two. What if UXers (and other industry peeps) started talking more along the lines of mult-sensory branding? That might make room in people's thinking for experiencing a brand.

    Reply
  5. Lis Hubert
    Lis Hubert at |

    A great point, and I can totally see where you're coming from! This has given me a good deal of insight when working with other web professionals. I won't use a site over again if the experience is crap, but I don't really care if it is visually appealing. This is really helpful!!

    Reply
  6. Gabi Moore
    Gabi Moore at |

    That's a really interesting issue. Maybe I can give you an insight into how visual designers feel about what you're saying. I started my career as a graphic design, and then moved on to visual design for the web, and I can tell you the graphic and visual designers, as web users, do visit and use websites because they look good, and not because they offer a good experience. We're always looking for great looking websites, we enjoy them, we come back to them because of the way they look, and so we usually assume that other people feel that way too. It's always hard for anyone who's not a UX designer to realize that the way they feel about websites is not the way everyone, or even their users, feel. And i think the same goes for other web professionals. Web Writers visit websites with good copy, front-end devs like visit websites with beautifully written HTML. Maybe one important role for UX designers is to bring all that into perspective, and help people realize that they are not their users. What do you think?

    Reply

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