Every object around you is a result of conscious design process. The difference between good or bad user experiences arises from poor object design process. The design process is the main factor that creates an emotional bond and increases brand loyalty. If design is considered to be a problem solving method, is functionality enough?
Object Design: Building an Emotional Connection with the User
Objects that reflect the human-centered design approach are desirable, beneficial and functional. These are the objects that create value to organizations. That’s why emotions are at the heart of the design process. When users interact with products through different levels of cognitive and emotional processing, functional products turn into memorable and permanent experiences.
What is an Emotional Bond?
An object that can establish an emotional bond with the user has a strong meaning attributed to it. Often a representation of the user’s identity comes into play. People generally make purchases to represent a certain set of values. These objects are always a few steps in terms of building an emotional connection with user in the long run.
Different Levels of Emotional Design
In his book Emotional Design, Don Norman emphasizes the key role of emotions in design by explaining three different levels (visceral, reflective and behavioral) of the emotional design. One of them is the way the user perceives the product for the first time and how it makes the user feel. The other covers the subjective experience of the user, which occurs during interaction with the product. The latter examines the behavioral reflections of the user. If all these different levels are taken into consideration, then comprehensive understanding of emotional design can be achieved.
Ownership of Objects
If objects get associated with certain emotional moments and conditions, then the product creates more than its basic functional value. E-Bot Eraser Pencil Sharpener is an exemplary project that facilitates the transition from kindergarten to school for children. Since the object satisfies the play needs of children at a certain level, E-Bot has gained a value beyond its functional properties. The product plays a facilitating role in the process of adaptation to school. The object becomes a part of an emotional phase in the life of the user.
The most important indicator of emotional design is the fact it creates a sense of ownership. It becomes much more valuable if the user can personalize the experience and accept it as part of their own life. That’s how object design becomes more than concept or sketch and the user actually starts to own the object. Proud of owning and using the object, the users eventually begin to share their experiences with others.
As Arman Design, we give great importance to create valuable and desirable experiences along with positive emotional reactions. We are fully aware of the detailed design process behind each object that we encounter in everyday life and embrace user centered design approach.