Credits : FastCompany
As the company’s head of design, he spearheaded artistic collaborations on tropical furniture and L.A. inspired skateboards to push the reserved Swedish furniture giant out of its minimalist comfort zone. But Engman recently left Ikea to start a company of his own called Skewed Productions. Think of Skewed as a hybrid of design studio and ad agency–its goal is to create marketing moments for companies through product design itself. Instead of spending money on ad buys, Engman wants to teach companies to market themselves through their design.
“I want to show there’s an alternative to marketing, which is actually design,” says Engman. “And if you work with design and communications in the right way, that would be the best kind of marketing, without buying media.”
In our opinion his plan makes some sense. In a consumer-obsessive world, design has become a major selling point. Consumers study everything from Kickstarter campaigns built upon the personal journeys of inventors to Apple’s Jony Ive-narrated iPhone videos to hear the intent and motivation behind the products we buy.“More and more people are interested in how things are made,” says Engman. “I believe in transparency–being more transparent in design you do–that attracts interest and over time it builds interest in the project.”