Domain: Brand Experience
My role: Research, UX, Process Book, Graphic Design, Wire-framing
School Project: SFU – Spring 2014
Additional Team members: Louie Yan, Lisa Cho, Marco Yuen, Grace Lam
About the Company
Is a UK-based hairdressing company with over 400 salons around the world that offers creative hair styling tailored for each client’s facial features, personality, and lifestyle. The organization has won 55 British Hairdressing Awards in 13 categories. Our objective was to take advantage of our design knowledge to figure out a method that makes this business even more profitable.
New customers are likely to feel stressed out about trying a new stylist because he/she may not be able to meet their expectations. Despite the luxurious service provided by Toni & Guy, stylists tend to spend little time figuring out with their customers truly want.
Establishing a medium of communication between the stylist and clients before they ever step foot into the salon.
We looked at micro trends, small and growing forces behind tomorrow’s big changes that could inspire our idea. we came through 3 groups that have different needs and expectations:
Trust is a huge factor when venturing into a salon with an unfamiliar stylist. What if clients can start a relationship with the stylist and brand, by choosing the right stylist before they ever step foot into the salon?
The signature: Signatures are unique and personal. Every stylist has a different look that caters towards a different type of client, yet matching clients with the right stylist is difficult.
The portfolio: While many stylists carry physical portfolios, it is rare for a stylist to maintain an online portfolio. Collecting the stylists’ work digitally seemed a great and risk less idea for both stylists and customers. Stylists can reach a wider audience while instilling pride and motivation in each stylist’s own work. Customers can easily find the suitable hairstyle and stylist and go to the salon with confidence.
Personalized style: ready-made, or off-the-rack, products are less valuable than the one-of-a-kind. We are starting to take this farther, and not only valuing the one-of-a-kind, but the type of product created specifically for one person.
Companies as communities: The idea that tomorrow’s successful companies will work as communities rather than as machines. According to FastCompany, education will be a function of apprenticeship and mentor-ship; benefits will be menus, where everyone’s options differ; salaries will be incentives; and everyone, regardless of age or position, will be able to further their career and influence the organization’s direction. Bringing the community idea to the salon seemed reasonable because Toni & Guy is international and is involved with Fashion Week.
“Invoking trust by nurturing co-creation”
During this four weeks project, I spent lots of time researching the salon industry and reading about contemporary business strategies in order to come up with a design solution for the proposed problem. I illustrated my research outcome in different diagrams and explained them to my teammates and during the class presentation. As a UX designer, I made several paper prototypes to think and visualize all the possible interaction options within the application. The prototypes assisted my teammates to discuss areas of weakness and opportunities leading to a more human-friendly interface. Next, I made digital prototypes in Illustrator with more details in preparation for the final app design.
This intensive project enlightened me about the importance of having a deep understanding of a company’s business model, values, goals, and audience in order come up with design solution that makes this business model more profitable and sustainable.