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SIGMA Everyday Life Aesthetics research

According to a recently released study today, and in the future, design is going to be the most important criteria when it comes to buying a car. Is this indicative of our “shallow” times? Is form the only thing that still counts? That would be underestimating the function of the “form”.
Styling has long since become a form of gratification, - design a value providing identity. “Everyday Life Aesthetics” has little to do with beauty, but describes, from the viewpoint of the consumer’s own culture and value orientation, the perceivable congruency between his personal intentions and currently available offers. One doesn’t only prefer one offer over the other because of it’s merits in terms of innovation, but rather because of the fascination with its design.

Design isn’t just the cherry to top off the product,
- it has become its center piece.

The arrangement of one’s own every day life world, meaning how one wants to live, how one wants to present oneself to the world, which makes, products and services one prefers, which ones one rejects, how one sets oneself apart from different groups of people, in order to not be confused with them etc., is increasingly becoming equal to the forming of an identity in regards to every day life aesthetics
It’s actually more of a “feeling” (emotional) process as a thinking one. “Every day life aesthetics” in this context is not only related to beauty, but refers to the fit between consumers’ values and aesthetical orientations on the one side, and the manufacturers’ products and market communication on the other.

Styling becomes a way of satisfying one’s needs, design as something that gives worth to one’s identity!

Consumers do not only prefer one product over the other because of its innovative character, but because of the fascination for the design. It fits the personality, it fits one’s own value pattern, one chooses it because the design fits the personality, even if the value of the product alone would not justify the choice.

This kind of aesthetical fascination has meanwhile become a key trend throughout all product categories

The ’aesthetisation’ of everyday life, and thus, of consumption, is unrelentingly imposing its rules on the marketing of products and services. Design isn’t just the cherry to top off the product, - it has become its center piece.
“The aesthetical perspectives, which were once considered rather dubious”, says the social philosopher Wolfgang Welsch when looking at the societal change, “increasingly prove to be the ones that are closer to reality and easier to decipher.”
SIGMA describes this phenomena, in which people chose their own “form of existence” rather through what they personally experience than through rational introspection, as „Identity Engineering“.

The current triumph of the flat screen TV was predictable.

Manufacturers, which 24 months ago were only looking at the currently rather small market shares of flat screens in the TV segment (<3%), were at risk of overlooking this market trend, and through that giving up their own market share to new vendors.
What was overlooked, was the growing interest in the technological/aesthetical design of one’s own living space in the trend leader milieus, in which these news products seemed to fit perfectly: The SIGMA trend indicator produced data showing that 80% (!) of all the respondents, especially the post moderns, answered that a flat screen tv would fit their style of interior decoration “really well”, or “well”. This clearly showed that – given the right price – a flat screen TV would not only be a niche product for rich people or technology freaks, but that it really had the potential to be sold in volumes, pushing the current “tube technology” to the fringes.
The most impressive display of Everyday Life Aesthetics can be seen in different styles of home furnishing: While the furniture in the traditional working class milieus is supposed to convey a sense of “rusticality”, and a style Ó la IKEA dominates in the bourgeois middle class milieus, - members of the social climber milieus have a tendency to prefer chrome and glass.
SIGMA’s research of Everday Life Aesthetics includes the aesthetical preferences of target groups the world over. We advise businesses which want to specifically apply aesthetics in order to convey the uniqueness of their products and services to consumers the world over.
Well founded insights, as well as a substantial amount of graphic material about
  • Basic aesthetic motives
  • Preferences concerning taste
  • Preferences in regards to consumption
  • Preferences in terms of style
provide a detailed insight into the everyday life worlds of consumers.
Everyday life aestheticsGetting a feel for the SIGMA Milieus in the “House of the Contemporary”: Documenting various different styles of interior design in Germany together with SZ magazine. Read more
SIGMA Milieus«Postmodernes Milieu:
Young, mostly highly educated, urban avant-garde milieus. Lifestyle trend-setters living multiple identities and contradictory ways of life. The individual as the ”engineer” of his/her personal universe.Read more