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The interior environment can substantially define the quality of life and happiness by fostering pleasurable and meaningful experiences. Therefore, the present product development project will have the objective of engaging individuals in such experiences. The proposed design item will be a sofa – a piece of furniture that is often used in households for social as well as various functional and leisure purposes.
Due to the multifunctional nature of the suggested product, it is pivotal to ensure that its design allows fulfilling each of the expected furniture functions well. Thus, the project will rather focus on the enhancement of existing models. It means that traditional sofa design elements will be implemented as the basis in the product development process. However, the designers will also strive to improve engineering structures, add values through the selection of high-quality, sustainable materials, and come up with innovative aesthetic solutions. Overall, the final product will comprise the aspects of utility and visual appeal that will help users establish long-lasting emotional connections with the sofa.
To provide a rationale for the development of the sofa design, credible sources on the roles of interior environments in human life, as well as custom design preferences and buying decision-making, were consulted. The key source was a peer-reviewed article by Petermans and Pohmeyer (2014) that comprises expert opinions and critical evaluation of evidence on the significance of space design in promoting individual well-being.
The new sofa will be developed following the Positive Design framework described in the study. It includes such elements as pleasure, virtue, and personal significance that together help stimulate a person’s flourishing (Petermans & Pohmeyer, 2014).
Additionally, to make sure that the product is well-demanded, the design process will be supported by evidence on consumer buying decision process and factors driving it. For example, the findings of an empirical study by Oblak, Pirc Barčić, Klarić, Kitek Kuzman, and Grošelj (2017) demonstrated that quality and price are key criteria for purchase. Thus, it is vital to ensure that the new sofa will be attractive to potential buyers in terms of these and other criteria. Notably, further literature review should focus on more qualitative and quantitative studies for the development of deeper insight into the matter of interior design and understanding consumer perceptions and interests better.
As such, sofas are not addictive products, but some aspects of Nir Eyal’s “hooked” model can be applied to them. A habit-forming product triggers emotions, stimulates anticipation of reward, and increases the likelihood of users’ return (Sam, 2016). In the case of a proposed furniture piece, emotional response will be achieved through the product appearance, tactile experiences, and optimization of utility, which some of the users will likely find important and valuable.
The anticipation of reward will be generated by maximizing such a sofa property as comfortability. For this reason, special attention will be paid to product ergonomics and material selection. As for the likelihood of return, it does not play a substantial role in the case of the proposed design because the purchase of a sofa is usually a one-time deal. However, when user experience during interaction with a certain product is highly enjoyable, he/she may develop loyalty to a brand and continue buying from it. Thus, the design of one exceptional furniture piece can be regarded as an investment in the brand’s future.
To communicate the design idea, the elevator pitch formula will be applied. It comprises the summary of basic elements characterizing the market potential of a product. They include target audience, consumer needs, product name, market category, key benefits, competition, and unique differentiators (Gray, 2010). This approach is beneficial because it requires preliminary research. It means that the presentation will be based on a comprehensive picture of the market situation.
The first four formula elements are descriptive and general in nature. However, the information on the competition and key benefits is more critical and may be particularly significant in showing if the product will be successful. Lastly, the emphasis on the unique properties of the design item at the end of the pitch will help emphasize its values.
Gray, D. (2010). Elevator pitch. Gamestorming. Web.
Oblak, L., Pirc Barčić, A., Klarić, K., Kitek Kuzman, M., & Grošelj, P. (2017). Evaluation of factors in buying decision process of furniture consumers by applying AHP method. Drvna Industrija, 68(1), 37-43.
Petermans, A., & Pohmeyer, A. E. (2014). Design for subjective well-being in interior architecture. Web.
Sam, S. L. (2016). Nir Eyal: The psychology of building addictive products. Medium. Web.