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UX designer vs. Salesman

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My job is to sell design. It’s made easier by the fact that almost all of our clients come to us looking for a design solution. We’re not selling design as much as selling the value of the specific solutions we’ll be implementing with each client. It’s very unusual these days to find a client that doesn’t understand the value of a well designed web experience.

Here’s the weird thing. Even though there is an almost universal acceptance that design is as important to business success as a comprehensive business strategy some designers fail to see themselves as part of the sales process. I still come across so many designers that think of themselves as designers and not as salespeople. Apparently sales and marketing are still considered swear words in most designer’s heads. Sales is not only necessary for designers to understand but they have to embrace it to be find the channels for their creativity. I came across this posting by Christopher Fahey at Behavior which explains my frustration so much more eloquently:

A designer who neglects marketing concerns and designs a product that the target audience sees as undesirable (because, for example, it lacks a sexy list of features or a glossy interface) is just as bad as a designer who neglects production concerns and creates something that is prohibitively expensive and time-consuming to build (to manufacture, program, whatever).

Author Richard Banfield

As CEO, Richard leads Fresh Tilled Soil’s strategic vision. He’s a mentor at TechStars and BluePrintHealth, an advisor and lecturer at the Boston Startup School, and serves on the executive committees of TEDxBoston, the AdClub’s Edge Conference, and Boston Regional Entrepreneurship Week.

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