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Last night it was the DBA’s annual Design Effectiveness awards.

For those of you that don’t know (and I’m guessing that’s most of you); the DBA are the trade association of design in the UK and champions of designs tangible value to business or ‘design effectiveness’. To celebrate and recognise relationships and projects where design can be proved to have added tangible value, twenty-seven years ago the DBA founded the Design Effectiveness Awards. With three levels of award (reflecting the strength of the case for designs role in ensuring the success of the project), there’s nothing else like it in our industry.

Effective Design does not rely on a big budget

This year, a total of sixty-one projects were recognised across the sixteen categories. As would be expected the big name clients and agencies were out in force, but so too were an impressive number of small businesses, start-ups, and up-and-coming agencies — it’s great to see that these awards prove that effective design does not rely on a big budget.

Now I’m not going to go through all of the projects and their case studies, I’m simply going to draw your attention to two projects in particular; HM Government and Radley Yelders collaboration on the Great Britain campaign, and Strong Nutrients and PearlFishers work on the development and roll-out of the Strong Nutrients brand.

Strong Nutrients

What do you get when you combine a small client with a small budget and big ambitions, with a ‘big’ agency with plenty of experience and expertise? Hugely impressive results.

Strong Nutrients_01

The case study doesn’t tell us how long the design project took to complete, but it does show us that within eighteen months of launch return on investment had been and listings at some hugely impressive retailers had been achieved. For a ‘start-up’ this is incredible and I’d love to learn more about the project.

Read the Strong Nutrients case study here.

Great Britain

Now the opposite end of the spectrum; a huge budget, a huge client, a huge agency, and a huge global campaign to design.

Radley_Yeldar_Great_Britain4_0

The results though are equally impressive. So much so that this project one last night’s Grand Prix, awarded to the piece of design proven to have added more tangible value than any other submitted.

Read the Great Britain case study here.

The Lessons

So there you go; read the case studies, if not all of them then certainly these two, and whether you’re a client or an agency, start your next project with an eye on Design Effectiveness — you can’t fail to be impressed with the results.

Have a look through all the winners of DBA Design Effectiveness Awards’ here.