Design As Narrative

On this last morning of FUSE 2014 in Chicago, Anthony Sperduti, Co-Owner & Creative Director, Partners & Spade took the stage to talk to us about design as narrative.

Etsy, Google, JCrew, Instagram, Conde Nast, Sephora, and Target are just a few of Partners & Spade’s impressive resume of clients.

“Humans are really wired to navigate the world through storytelling,” Sperduti explained. “It’s amazingly powerful tool if you are a marketer or a designer.”

So, what is a brand’s most compelling story? According to Sperduti, here are some ways a brand story becomes compelling:
  • A story is compelling when they surprise.
  • A Story is compelling for the brand when they lead to discovery.
  • A story is compelling for the brand when the story can be told countless ways.
Among many things, Sperduti and his team at Partners & Space have also learned that sometimes narrative can trump design convention. Not to mention, sometimes narrative redefines. In fact, men have spent 18 percent more on fashion in 2013 than in previous years.

Partners & Space has also learned a unique story makes a unique brand. It’s common sense, but it is important to hold on tight to that and recognize that, according to Sperduti.

It is important to ask the question, ‘Is the story being retold?’ “This is the hallmark of any good story, which is the hallmark of any good brand,” said Sperduti.

About the Author: Amanda Ciccatelli, Social Media Strategist of the Marketing Division at IIR USA, has a background in digital and print journalism, covering a variety of topics in business strategy, marketing, and technology. Amanda is the Editor at Large for several of IIR’s blogs including Next Big DesignCustomers 1st, and ProjectWorld and World Congress for Business Analysts. She previously worked at Technology Marketing Corporation as a Web Editor where she covered breaking news and feature stories in the technology industry. She can be reached at Follow her at @AmandaCicc.
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