IKIGAI in the Visual Industry –
Find a single answer to those 4 questions and you’ll know how happy your life will be
Before going forward, IKIGAI is a japanese concept. It means “a reason for being” and rests on the 4 pillars below. According to the japanese concept, a human-being needs to find at least 1 common answer to those 4 questions to have “IKIGAI”.
This concept has actually very interesting applications to life in general but also for the design industry.
Creativity is such a broad topic that it is really important to be able to turn our focus where we can receive the best return-to-investment according to our own personality and needs.
In Desuals, in addition to applying that to ourselves, we also tried to apply it to the Marketing Agency itself, as an entity. And this experience gave us another, interesting, way of thinking about what the company is about. For us, it all started with a drive to show clients in the light of what makes them unique, special and beautiful. Where we evolved and developed our activities from there, is a process that can actually be summarized in those 4 questions summarizing the IKIGAI concept.
Creating the logo for our new client, a stylist and expert in hairdressing & make-up, we were inspired by his life’s choices, obstacles and his responses to those obstacles. This is how we went from creating a logo, to self reflection. We then decided to share it with you.
Following is our thought on the 4 pillars.
1. What does the World NEED?
This is one of the most challenging questions to grasp as a Marketing Agency. It also much depends on the type of client the agency is looking to have here. It is about standing on the side of potential customers.
What do they need the agency for? What are their drives? What value can the agency bring to its clients? What message can a company carry in digital marketing and personal branding that would help the world through the existence of the agency itself?
As social beings, we do obtain happiness from having a place in the world where we know that we bring something, either by doing administrative papers for making a company work on a long term basis, by creating a new logo, by giving a bigger voice to some, by caring, teaching, etc.
2. What do you LOVE to do?
This is about what all the people in a design company could enjoy doing: reading, writing, learning about technical stuff or finances, designing, creating a new concept, participating in the creation of new tendencies, leading, etc. This can be the reason why the people joined the company, what they may be already trained for, or what they discover once inside the company and what inspires them.
3. What are you GOOD AT?
Being good at something means that one worked in order to reach the level of skill one has now. This point is easier to change, if one starts working now. For example, even when creative people may already have a natural tendency to learn on the topic since they are kids, it does require them to work every day on a specific topic in order to really be good at it. They can also discover the topic at one point later in life. Whatever it is, it is never too late to learn more and become an expert in a domain.
4. What can you be PAID FOR?
Let’s be real. It is about living, not surviving. If you worry about money, you cannot live; you only survive. Even if the amount people need to live a comfortable life will depend on where and how they live, this point cannot be under-estimated. The digital agency needs to take into consideration all the previous points, the skills of the people within the company, their salary that they need for living (not surviving ;)) and what are clients ready to pay for.
Now let’s cut to the chase,
it is more important to focus on the people that are within the digital agency than the company itself. However, it is really interesting to apply those 4 questions to the marketing agency, so it helps to refine the direction that the it should follow.
"Desuals have been a real breakthrough for me. I came across their work, searching for a company to help me create my Stylist image through a logo. They have really been able to grasp the identity I wanted for my hair-dressing and make-up Brand. I was in awe, that they actually used my signature as an inspiration to identify my brand because of how important my indentity is to me.
It has been such a pleasure to work with them, because they really listen to their clients and make the best out of their feedback. I would gladly recommend them time and time again." - Zahid Fitz