The outcome of this project are under consideration to be implemented in Vermeer products in the long term.
Determine a basic strategy for the whole semester on how to thoroughly research and investigate opportunities for Vermeer and transition from rapid ideation to informed, profound concepts that can be built upon in the future.
Vermeer has multiple product lines and complex machines with a multitude of different aesthetic properties that can be molded to become a more cohesive family of products.
Embody Vermeer's brand language in a cohesive, long-term design language that aligns with their diverse product line.
Timeline: One Semester
My Roles: secondary research,
market research, interview with stakeholders, data analyzing, journey mapping, ideation, form developing
Research & Discovery
“Get Smart” by researching everything about Vermeer, from their machine models and interfaces to their interactions with customer service and dealers to the rich history and values that has established Vermeer as a premier brand; as well as researching competitive brands for their strong and weak points. We also researched analogous products to see what product lines are successful in creating a unified, cohesive design language
Websites, analogous brands/products, dealership visits, factory visits (Pella), customer/worker interviews,
Vermeer is an upper echelon brand because of their attention to quality on every machine manufactured as well as their unrelenting attention and perseverance to customer service and satisfaction. Vermeer is also deeply rooted in family ties, treating every single employee from sales representatives to the CEO like they are family. They have a clearly established brand language.
COMPETITOR WEBSITE ANALYSIS
These are the products that are direct competitors to the products of Vermeer.
This was the understanding of the daily setting for site workers and possibly seeing if there were opportunities to explore to help everyone better understanding to how efficiently do their job
This journey map is a documented effort to clearly explain a customer journey. this helps us align the information in context and provide clarity to informed design decisions.
Mapping is an important step to help us to understand who our key stakeholders are, where they come from, and what they are looking for in relationship to Vermeer.
After becoming educated with the industry and its expanding set of needs, we can dedicate our time to creative possibilities. To ensure that design decisions being made within the studio reflect the real world needs of the customers, we will conduct interviews interpersonally and over the phone. Once feedback solidifies in a clear direction, we can approach the stages of idea generation where insights play a key role in the design.
Divergently create a myriad of concepts based upon research and constraints of the various machine lines. Once there has been heavy idea generation, begin to refine concepts into informed, high-fidelity iterations, keeping close attention to making the concepts both cohesive and unified across the various product lines.
Vermeer’s flagship machines and product families, Analogous products, competitive products (i.e. DitchWitch, Morbark, New Holland; etc.) research gathered from phase 1, Solidworks models of various machines
This first stage of idea generation showed us the best way to break down abstract terminology (Rugged, Tough, High-Performance, Confident & Valuable) into visually identifiable attributes.
To assist in visualizing Vermeer's brand language, we selected words to further define their attributes.
Develop visual library and semantic
Identify attributes from Ideation phase in existing Vermeer equipment and unify them into clear directions to further ideate upon.
Overlays with Vermeer product images and tracing the geometry that best describes the established terminology. Analysis and brainstorming sessions about the results.
We can identify what attributes best communicate the terminology (Rugged, Tough, High-Performance, Confident & Valuable) and integrate them with other identified attributes to begin creating 5 distinct design concepts.
A Visual Library is a collection of images of familiar objects. These images show successful use of the desired characteristics or attributes.
Using the delineated Vermeer brand language, we attached words to evoke visual meaning.
Take the attributes and characteristics defined in the previous stage and apply them to a range of Vermeer equipment. We created 5 categories based on Vermeer’s Brand Values and assigned them each characteristic that fit their descriptions.
Visual Library, Vermeer’s Brand Values
By creating specific categories that each focused on one of Vermeer’s Brand Values, we were able to stretch out many characteristics for each concept. This gave us a wide, but appropriate range for our further refinement of concepts.
This process helps to identify key features that embody Vermeer’s values in existing Vermeer equipment. Then apply them to the whole set of unified design recommendations.
Use the insight we received from Vermeer about our 15 recommendations to create guidelines for the next round of concepts. Additionally, explore color and decal placements.
Insights and feedback from Vermeer, blue foam models
The feedback we received from Vermeer about our 15 recommendations drove our next rounds of changes and sketching. Due to their feedback we understand which concepts or characteristics are not beneficial to the customer or Vermeer. This understanding helped us to create our final concept that embodies the Vermeer Brand Values by using Brand Guidelines that we created.
An aggregate of our body of research to date, including conversations and a survey were used as insights for these final recommendations.
“European companies love the robustness of American design: Combining Teton and Everest are a good way to do so”
- Layer separation with color (Yellow
always on top)
- Use a straight “architectural” line
From 2/3rd up back to
front 1/4th of product box.
- All lines should be parallel to or
reference architectural line
- Black “wrap” – Front to bottom
- Minimal taper below architectural
- 60° or 30° chamfer along top and
- Tighten gaps
- Large glass panels should be
broken up by bars
What can be done with these design guidelines?
These guidelines can be used as a driving force for the creation of a new design, or as a guide to aid in the iteration of an existing design.
Allows machines with distinctly different layouts to have a cohesive aesthetic.
Allows designers and engineers to work within a similar head-space when creating a new product.
A well thought out design language allows Vermeer products to be more approachable and recognizable while maintaining a distinct image.
We created design guidelines, based on research and insights, to assist in the creation of a consistent visual identity across product lines.
DESIGN GUIDE SUMMARY
The assertive directionality of the architectural line, along with all of the other lines referencing it, provides a sense of high performance on the machines.
The separation of layers through color gives a high contrast aesthetic that conveys value.
The chamfer along the top and back edges paired with the layer separation around the front and bottom provides a rugged, armored “shell”.
The angularity of the geometric design gives the machines a tough silhouette.
The taper creates a confident stance that extends upwards and outwards.
Tight gaps reinforce the rugged brand value of a solid, unbreakable body.