#32 STEVE LIDBURY - from omnichannel to monochannel; how Eight Inc. design human-centric experiences for brands including Apple, Tesla and Nike

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We first came across Steve Lidbury, Executive Principal at Eight Inc. on stage at FashionTech Berlin in 2018 where he shared ‘How luxury brands can remain relevant in a millennial world’ (available on YouTube), and for us, this was one of the standout sessions of the event. Since then, Steve joined us for our London Tech Week panel ‘Why human connection should be at the heart of all technology’ and we’ve had many interesting discussions over the last couple of years.

Eight Inc. are often referred to as Apples best-kept secret due to the fact they are responsible for the renowned Apple Store design. A multi-discipline experience design studio, with 200+ strategic designers and business creatives connected across 11 studios, 6 time zones and 3 continents, Eight.Inc design holistic, human-centric experiences for world-renowned brands including Tesla, Estee Lauder, Coach, Virgin and Nike.

Before joining Eight Inc. Steve, a Ravensbourne University architecture graduate, co-founded Postnormal, collective of like-minded international designers that established a creative presence through a series of both collaborative and individual interior, installation and exhibition projects in Tokyo. He went on to create, Steve Lidbury Design Studio and completed projects in Japan and China that earned him the recognition as a flagship for British design in Japan.

Returning to the UK, Steve took up the role as European Creative Director of the Luxury Automotive Group at Imagination, creating multichannel brand experiences for the likes of Jaguar, Land Rover, Aston Martin and Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.

Steve’s approach to life and work, is to make most of life by exploring the world, it’s different cultures and people which intern drives him to use design as a tool for creating better human outcomes and conditions for the greater good.

Just before lockdown, we sat down with Steve to record a podcast. Since then we’ve checked back to see if Covid-19 has shifted his thoughts around Monochannel, but he assured us that it’s even more important than ever to create a consistent and connected brand experience. An experience that is driven by emotions, sensations, and desires. In our podcast, we discuss what the future of brand and customer interaction could feel like, and how adopting a Monochannel strategy will change the way we do business.

Some brands, particularly small businesses, they may not feel the need to create a strategy to ensure customer records and interactions are unified. However, regardless of business size or ambition to grow, we all have to make sure we understand who our customers are and what they each want.

A relationship is a two-way thing, and if there’s an imbalance of that relationship the customer will move onto another brand who treats them well. It’s time to make sure that doesn’t happen because from a brands perspective it costs a lot more to acquire a new customer than it does to keep an existing one happy!

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