Beauty and the Business

Are you aware about your branding aesthetics? Do you care if your business “sparkles” or just one of the ordinary?

Some of you probably say, “Who cares? I’m not in the business of being pretty. I’m in the business of selling good products and services”, right? Well, you’re partially correct. You are not in the business of looking pretty but you’re wrong about your customers NOT caring.

As a Graphic Designer, I learned a long time ago that I’m not in the business of being conceptual nor abstract. Nor am I in the business of being artistic for the sake of self-expression. I am, however, in a business of selling services through creativity, innovation, analytical strategy, provocation, and practical presentation, and “aesthetic” happens to be a crucial element of these selling recipes.

I know it sounds superficial to say that “if your product looks good, it will sell.” It is as big of a lie as the saying “If you build it, they will come.” But we all know that “beauty” is capable of single-handedly selling a piece of crap product. We all buy stuff even when we know that the advertisement is a flat out lie! The colorful pretty box on a crowded shelf always jumps at you first. It’s purposely designed for you not to miss it! It’s the one that screams, “Buy me! Buy me! I’m prettier than the rest of these ugly losers!” It’s true! Ask yourself, when was the last time you bought something because it’s pretty and you could careless if the damn thing last you shorter than your previous marriage? Sorry, didn’t mean to hit a nerve there. But pretty things do not mean good products. IKEA anyone?

Well, since I mentioned marriage, I might as well get in to it. I promise I’ll be careful this time. But before I proceed, I want to make it clear to you that I’m not favoring “beauty” by it self with no hint of any quality. Nor am I against marketing products through deception and blinding tactics using aesthetics. I love “beautiful” products and services because of their great presentation in marketing approach as well as the integrity from a consumer point of view.

To build my case, have you heard of this guy named John, who 5 years ago ditched Rose, whom everyone knew was the smartest and kindest girl on the block. Instead, he married Jane, who happened to be the prettiest and most popular girl in the whole town of Skinville. Now, Rose, happily married with 3 healthy children, is a successful CEO of her own well-established company while still manage to be a homemaker (not to mention cooks a lovely dinner for her husband every single night when he comes home from work.) and John, a broke-ass drunk who cannot remember if he became drunk because Jane left him or because Jane left him with half of his life earned savings.

OK, I just made it up…or did I?

But anyway, I know that nobody could have blamed John for choosing Jane over Rose. He went with his instinct, his gut feeling. Like a lot of us buy things through impulse or pressure. How could John know about Rose’s real potential? Research? Who has time for that?

But wouldn’t it be nice if Rose was as pretty as Jane and still had all the (non-superficial) good quality in a woman a man could ever wish for?

So you may ask yourself, is what your business offers to consumers a “Jane” or a “Rose” or both?

Making your business appealing through your marketing and presentation does not mean just hiring a good design and marketing team to create you a pretty logo, a slick packaging, and a stylish advertising campaign. It also means conveying your message to your consumers with promising quality and integrity. Now that’s a beauty.