Electronic Product Design

Tuesday, 17 June 2014 00:00 Written by 

17-06-14  Twitter logo blue 200Unifying Electronics Design on Twitter

In my other existence, I am a market and social research consultant. I love writing for both roles and the variety of information I engage with on a daily basis is second to none. Throughout my time writing for Hawkshead I have expanded my knowledge on electronics design, designers, design process and design technologies. The same can be said for my engagement with market and social research faculties. However, I have noticed that the electronics design community as whole – perhaps excluding the digital behemoths such as Electronic Design or Farnell/Element 14 – is not as lucidly engaging with social media outlets as the market researchers down the hall.

The first thing I note is that market researchers have focused their discourse around a single Twitter tag: #mrx. The majority of the large market and social research companies, as well as individuals freely engage with the tag as well as the other researchers participating in any discussions. The quality of the blog posts, infographics and white papers that pass through the #mrx tag demand attention from anyone serious about interacting with digital market research. Again, the stature of the businesses and individuals relaying their personal views to the tag is also compelling – be able to interact with industry thought leaders certainly has its benefits.

The electronics design industry does not seem to have a similar focal point across any social network. I can sense that there is an intrinsic difference in the varieties of work accomplished by each industry: market and social research is designed to share, share, share, whereas electronics designers are often protecting design and intellectual properties. But being able to interact with an established tag where industry specific information is being shared would be an outstanding focal point for any individual attempting to better understand what can be a complex and jargon ridden industry.

I am not advocating that individuals or companies begin to divulge their trade secrets. I know that the existence of an electronics design related social media tag wouldn’t succeed in engaging an audience of that persuasion. Considering how vast the electronics design industry is and how many outstanding designers exist within that network, encouraging just a few to write and interact with a specialised tag does not seem to be unreasonable.

Unfortunately, we cannot judge at this time how this would add value to the market. The very nature of direct communications between industry leaders must be beneficial to the flow of knowledge between business, as well as those attempting to enter the industry for the first time. This approach is perhaps suited to electronics design companies attempting to better understand and engage their potential clientele through a wider range of communications. The undoubted benefits of this are well documented. The average consumer now demands an experience, not just a product – providing a mutual point of engagement could be that focal point.

 

Image courtesy of: KROMKRATHOG / FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

 

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