Design at Reason: August 2019.

August 20, 2019

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Head of design practice

August is always a slow month for work but it is an interesting month for reflection and inspiration. This August we have been busy with new projects but also ideas, books, inspiration, ice teas and meetings in the terrace however, among all of these things there's been one idea grabbing our attention: How can we systematise growth?

What we are thinking about: Growth hacking

Like it or not digital products are, at their core, user loop-engagement machines. Every digital product from that funny experiment you built on a weekend to behemoths like Instagram are measured by growth alone.

Since growth has become THE goal, Growth Hacking is THE technique everyone is after. Growth Hacking is that stupendous process and fabulous method that everyone in the design space begs for sooner or later. Although to be perfectly honest, no matter how useful and famous Growth Hacking is, it still sounds strange and mysterious to me.

I admit that the first time I heard about it, Growth Hacking sounded a bit sketchy, a bit like *growth-hustle. "*Do whatever to grow"? Tenacity? Grit? What the hell does Growth Hacking really mean?

This month we have been a bit obsessed with Growth Hacking so we compiled this nice list of links we think you might appreciate whether you are an expert or a beginner.

  • To get started, learn the history and the basics: → Link
  • How to skip straight to the what works: → Link
  • How to avoid vanity metrics: → Link
  • Never forget that you are not working with technology but psychology: → Link
  • Why the startups suck at marketing by Luke W: → Link

Books we are reading

Everybody knows designers survive on three things: cookies, jokes and books. We are not going to share our cookies, our dad jokes will remain secure in our slack channel but we are super happy to recommend these books we have been reading and lusting after. |Covers 0000 Content design A beautiful book on content design with great advice. The design of the book reminds of The medium is the massage and it is still such a little jewel. → Link |Covers 0001 Let my people go surfingA beautiful book not about future but about perennial advice on life, business, passion and ethics. Take your time to read it and be inspired. It is a good one. → Link |Covers 0002 Indistricable Nir Eyal, the man everyone loves to hate, has released a new book and as someone said on Twitter "he first sold the poison and now he is selling the cure", which is true but still, this man knows what he is talking about. Essential read. → Link|Covers 0003 Super normal Super Normal is a timeless love letter to the real design that just works, invisibly and silently. One book every designer should read. → Link |

Beautiful things we are looking at

No matter how many presentations and documents we write, we are still designers at the end of the day we love beauty and the nets are so full of beautiful things.

  • Ephemera and photos from America's Parks brand form the 70s. Modernism and Vignelli at its best. → Link
  • New Bjork video and of course, as you might expect, it is incredibly mesmerising and magical. → Link
  • We have been seeing this AR campaign around Shoreditch and it looks as incredible as it seems. → Link
  • This project by Ueno works great and looks so so good. Probably one of the most beautiful apps we have seen lately. → Link

Fun stuff we love

Please don't be lazy getting gifs from Giphy! Our Slack is bursting with silly gems and not everything in life is hard work.

  • AI helps me play the piano so I can smash the keys like an idiot and still sound competent. Finally I totally love AI. → Link
  • Face swapping is amazing because machine learning is amazing. We just can't stop thinking about AI and Tom Cruise. → Link
  • 5% of Brits don't know if they have been attacked by a seagull or not. We don't know if this funny or incredibly deep. → Link