Thinking Beyond the Screen: Designing in All Dimensions

Designing beyond the screen is the result of constant collaboration, keeping designers, and clients ahead of the curve.

As the Internet of Things continues to expand, users are demanding a seamless, consistent brand experience across devices. Their expectations sometimes feel ahead of our ability, as designers, to consider them. For better or worse, the space is moving so quickly that the only sure way to anticipate user wants is to stay one step ahead through solid collaboration with our clients’ brands. 

Designing beyond the screen begins even before a sketch – with an integration and deeper understanding of client’s goals, trajectory, and (sometimes) weaknesses. Rather than waiting for our clients to come to us with a prompt, we should be continually thinking of the impact our experiences have, or could potentially have, beyond the screen for which they were designed. Our clients are often too busy juggling their part of the business to always see the potential in the expanded experience and so lean on us to consider the broader view.

At Vokal, we work side by side (literally and figuratively) with our clients to develop a solid partnership placing our designers at the center of the brand experience. Through workshops, roadmaps, research, and proactive thinking, we collaborate with our clients today to get them ready for tomorrow. When approached with a single experience request from clients, we consider the brand holistically, from mobile apps to location-based opportunities, both present and future.

Our philosophy of being just a single step ahead of our clients has placed us miles ahead of the competition, which is why we wanted to share some of our considerations as we engage with our client partners:  

  • Be proactive in your asks and bring more to the table than what was requested. 
  • Look at every request in as many dimensions as possible. 
  • Designing a new screen for an existing app? Consider where the user might be accessing it, both as part of the flow and physically, and design accordingly. 
  • Are there other, like experiences (regardless of industry or device) that you can borrow from?

Executing on a ‘Thinking Beyond the Screen’ strategy benefits everyone involved, not just the users. A deeper partnership allows our clients to take a peek into our design thinking and see business through a new, refreshing lens. As designers, we get the chance to helps us produce experiences that resonate even more loudly with users and expose us to industries and areas we may not have previously considered. Besides the obvious value of continued engagement, thinking beyond the screen helps expose designers to new verticals and expand our skills set.

Trust your designer’s instinct as you dip your toe into an industry or medium you’ve never explored before. Your clients and users will thank you.