We're using numbers wrong. Number mean nothing and stories are everything. Find ways to give your stats and numbers real value and life by creating a story that gets to the heart of the problem your reader has and positions your "brand" as an answer. We spend most of our efforts searching for the biggest number to make our case. But while big numbers are impressive, they’re still cold statistics. The true differentiator is translating them into stories. As the saying goes, “one death is a tragedy, a million deaths is a statistic”.

Gina Martinez

Hatched by Gina Martinez

Dec 07, 2023

5 min read

0

We're using numbers wrong. Number mean nothing and stories are everything. Find ways to give your stats and numbers real value and life by creating a story that gets to the heart of the problem your reader has and positions your "brand" as an answer. We spend most of our efforts searching for the biggest number to make our case. But while big numbers are impressive, they’re still cold statistics. The true differentiator is translating them into stories. As the saying goes, “one death is a tragedy, a million deaths is a statistic”.

Let’s look at some examples. We all love solutions that save us time and money, but as you’ll see, reciting numbers only go so far.

Stats: Let’s say you, like most Americans, drive 40 miles a day. Driving with a Prius instead of a standard fuel-efficiency car would save you 50% in gas.

Story: If you replaced your car with a Prius, in a month, you’ll have saved enough to go on a fancy dinner date. In 6 months, your savings would cover a weekend getaway. In a year, it would cover your annual gym membership.

Saving 50% is nice, but it’s just another stat until someone connects it to concrete things we can do. Convert any number to its ratio (i.e., 1 in 5), percentage (i.e., 20%) and inverse (i.e., 80%) forms; look through every angle before making a decision. If your product saves people time and money, personalize the savings — what can they do with the extra money? What does the time add to someone’s life? To inspire change, scale up the impact — what does it mean if they stick with the change for weeks, months, years? When your number is hard to grasp, compare it to categories that people intuitively understand; even better, find the largest category your number can dominate.

Now, let's shift our focus to design inspiration. Designers are always on the lookout for new sources of creative inspiration. Whether it's for a client project or personal exploration, finding fresh ideas is essential to keep the creative juices flowing.

Here are the top 20 online and offline inspiration sources for designers:

  • 1. Dribbble: Dribbble is a popular online platform where designers can showcase their work and get inspired by others. It's a great place to discover new design trends and styles.
  • 2. Behance: Behance is another online platform where designers can showcase their portfolios and connect with other creatives. It's a hub of creativity and a valuable source of inspiration.
  • 3. Pinterest: Pinterest is a visual discovery platform that allows users to save and organize images, videos, and other content. Designers can create mood boards and find inspiration from a wide range of categories.
  • 4. Instagram: Instagram is not only a social media platform but also a source of visual inspiration. Many designers and artists share their work on Instagram, providing a constant stream of creative ideas.
  • 5. Designspiration: Designspiration is an online gallery that curates design inspiration from various sources. It's a treasure trove of visual inspiration for designers.
  • 6. Awwwards: Awwwards is a website that recognizes and awards the best web design and development. It's a great place to discover cutting-edge design trends and innovative websites.
  • 7. Smashing Magazine: Smashing Magazine is a website and online publication that covers design and development topics. It offers insightful articles, tutorials, and showcases of exceptional design work.
  • 8. Creative Bloq: Creative Bloq is a website that provides inspiration, tips, and resources for designers and creatives. It covers a wide range of topics, including graphic design, web design, and illustration.
  • 9. Design Milk: Design Milk is an online magazine that showcases contemporary design in various fields, including architecture, interior design, and product design. It's a great source of inspiration for designers looking for fresh ideas.
  • 10. Design Taxi: Design Taxi is a global platform that provides news, trends, and inspiration for the creative community. It covers a wide range of topics, including design, advertising, and technology.
  • 11. Print Magazine: Print Magazine is a publication that focuses on visual culture and design. It features articles, interviews, and showcases of exceptional print design work.
  • 12. Communication Arts: Communication Arts is a magazine that covers the creative industry, including graphic design, advertising, photography, and illustration. It features inspiring work and insightful articles.
  • 13. Design Observer: Design Observer is an online platform that publishes articles, essays, and interviews on design and visual culture. It offers a critical and thought-provoking perspective on the design industry.
  • 14. The Dieline: The Dieline is a platform that showcases the best in packaging design. It features inspiring packaging projects from around the world.
  • 15. Design Museum: Design Museum is a physical museum located in London that celebrates and showcases design in all its forms. It's a must-visit for designers looking for inspiration and insights.
  • 16. MoMA: The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) is a renowned art museum in New York City. It houses a vast collection of modern and contemporary art, including design-related works.
  • 17. TED Talks: TED Talks are inspirational and thought-provoking presentations by experts in various fields. Many talks focus on design and creativity, offering valuable insights and ideas.
  • 18. Design conferences: Design conferences are excellent opportunities to learn, network, and find inspiration. Events like Adobe MAX, OFFF, and Design Indaba bring together industry professionals and thought leaders.
  • 19. Design books: Books are timeless sources of inspiration. From classic design principles to contemporary trends, there are countless design books that can spark creativity and provide valuable insights.
  • 20. Nature and everyday life: Sometimes, the best inspiration can be found in nature and everyday life. Observing the world around us, from the patterns in nature to the colors of a bustling city, can ignite new ideas and perspectives.

In conclusion, numbers may be impressive, but they lack the emotional connection that stories provide. When presenting statistics, it's essential to translate them into relatable stories that resonate with the audience. Additionally, for designers seeking inspiration, there are numerous online and offline resources available. From platforms like Dribbble and Behance to museums and design conferences, the possibilities for finding creative ideas are endless.

Actionable advice:

  • 1. When presenting numbers, always connect them to concrete actions or benefits that people can relate to. Show how the statistics translate into real-life scenarios and experiences.
  • 2. Experiment with different ways of presenting numbers, such as ratios, percentages, and inverses. This can help make the data more understandable and relatable.
  • 3. Don't limit yourself to traditional sources of inspiration. Look beyond the design world and find inspiration in nature, everyday life, and other industries. The more diverse your sources of inspiration, the more unique and innovative your designs will be.

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