Horn Group, a PR company known for its innovative approach to online PR, today announced the expansion of its award-winning design and development practice — now called Horn Group ID (Interactive Design). The company hired David Fausel as Vice President of Interactive Business responsible for business development, strategy and operations.
“The expansion of Horn Group ID signals the importance of interactive design and original content to our clients, and the complete shift in the public relations industry to communications for every medium,” said Sabrina Horn, Horn Group’s President and CEO.
This could be seen as a strategic move for Horn to get more business, and design companies might find this a competitive disadvantage – for good reason, if you ask me. But fact is that a PR company has to integrate design and content production into its line of services. PRs understand the needs of a business in a certain niche better than other agencies, because they do perform market and competitive analysis for their customers at the beginning of a project. PR agencies know which segments of the market to target, and are experienced in identifying which elements of design sell – whereas design agencies focus on aesthetics, and more often than not disregard the needs of the customer for the sake of eye-candy design.
This would be fine, but there are businesses for which eye-candy is detrimental. In many instances, the eye-candy is provided by design agencies that outsource designers in countries like India, China, etc. Designer work in these particular countries is usually cheaper, but the cultural differences are obvious. Colorful rainbows will not sell, when the business target is sober. A financial B2B site has to be designed to appeal businessmen, and so on.
Moreover, the current evolution of the web calls for interactive design, and the new mobile capabilities define other design strategies as well. Horn Group ID now offers mobile application development with two eminent launches for iPhone. In response to client demand, the practice also offers extensive video creation capabilities through the agency’s in-house video studios as well as motion graphics, including recently completed product videos for BitDefender and marketing videos for Conductor, Marketo and YuMe with more on the way.
Horn Group understands these needs better than no other and it has been doing this type of business for over eight years.
“What started almost eight years ago as logo and website design for technology companies has become strategic, creative and technical design for any company doing digital marketing. It’s really the next step in the evolution of our business and the PR industry at large,” CEO Sabrina Horn said in a press statement.