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X: Where Business Meets Design

Thursday, October 15, 2015 12:00 am EDT
"In math, x represents a variable to be solves for. In business, the x we must solve for is the experience we want to give our customers"

Customer experience should be one of the biggest priorities in business right now, but it’s not. Times are changing and so are customer expectations and behaviors.  Many customers are now mobile or digital first as a result of the devices and apps that shape their lives. Pinch, swipe, zoom, instant delivery services, the sharing and on demand economies, selfies, digital narcissism and the egosystem, each in their own way is reshaping customer preferences and decision making. They want to do business with every company the way that they engage with their favorite apps. The problem is that business perspective and supporting models for product development, sales and marketing, service and support, et al., are still rooted in the past. Executives just don’t live their business the way their customers and employees do and this is creating an experience divide that author Brian Solis believes will lead to brand irrelevance in the near future.

In his new book X: Where Business Meets Design, bestselling author Brian Solis shares why great products, creative marketing and delightful customer service are no longer enough to succeed. Beautifully designed as an “analog app” to showcase the philosophy of what Solis refers to as “experience architecture,” explores why an experience is everything and an experience is intentional by design. He outlines why the future of business is experiential and how to proactively create and cultivate meaningful experiences rather than react to them.

“In math, x represents a variable to be solves for. In business, the x we must solve for is the experience we want to give our customers,” Solis says. “Of course, the idea that businesses should focus on customer experience isn’t new. But we’ve entered a new era in experience creation - and businesses that don’t learn to craft much more satisfying experiences for their customers have a great deal to lose.”

This isn’t your ordinary business book.

The idea of a book was re-imagined for a digital meets analog world to be a relevant and sensational experience. Its aesthetic was meant to evoke emotion while also giving new perspective and insights to help businesses win the hearts and minds of their customers. And, the design of this book, along with what fills its pages, was done using the principles shared within.

In X, Solis shares more than the importance of experience. Readers will learn how to design a desired, meaningful and uniform experience in every moment of truth in a fun way including:

  • Why empathy and new perspective unlock creativity and innovation
  • The importance of User Experience (UX) in real life and in executive thinking
  • The humanity of Human-Centered Design in all you do
  • The art of Hollywood storytelling from marketing to product design to packaging
  • Apple’s holistic approach to experience architecture
  • The value of different journey and experience mapping approaches

Solis adds, “Changing the way businesses create experiences starts with defining what the experience is and should be. The challenge here is how we see the world. When we surround ourselves with people like us, as so many executives do, the work we do together is often based on shared perspectives and ways of thinking. Our personal and professional experiences can be enormously valuable in making business judgements, but they can also make us biased and work against us. The secret ingredient in creating any meaningful experience is the ability to understand and share another person’s feelings. Seeing the world through the eyes of others gives you a competitive advantage because so few businesses truly have a disciplined method for doing so.”

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BRIAN SOLIS is globally recognized as one of the most prominent thought leaders in business innovation. As a digital analyst, anthropologist, and futurist, he studies disruptive technology and its impact on business and society. More so, he humanizes technology's causal effect to help people see people differently and understand what to do about it. Brian has authored several bestselling books including What's the Future of Business (WTF), Engage!, and The End of Business as Usual. His blog,, is ranked as a leading resource for insights into the future of business, new technology and marketing.

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