Dr Jitin Chadha, Director, Indian Institute of Art and Design (IIAD)

A first-generation entrepreneur, Dr Jitin Chadha is the Founder Director of Indian Institute of Art and Design and Indian School of Business and Finance. Dr Chadha was awarded his Doctorate in Finance in 2011, in a grand ceremony chaired by the HRD Minister, Kapil Sibal and Prof. Dinesh Singh, Vice-Chancellor, Delhi University.

 

Communication Design is expressing information strategically through visual (images, text, audio and video) design. It significantly impacts the effectiveness, aesthetic, and economic viability of information.

Expanding Market Size

The changing work landscape, digitization, adoption of VR and AR technologies, investments in big data analytics and provision of online design services are significantly influencing the design services market. Simultaneously, the following statistics clearly indicate the expanding scope of opportunities for communication designers in India.

  • The Graphics Industry was expected to grow up to INR 188.32 billion by 2020. As per the Bureau of Labour Statistics, 5% of growth can be expected by 2026.
  • The media and entertainment industry has the potential to reach USD100 billion by 2030 as per the report from the India Brand Equity Foundation (IBEF)
  • A KPMG report mentions that the gaming industry is estimated to reach INR 118.8 billion by 2023.
  • The e-commerce market is projected to grow to US$ 200 billion by 2026 which in turn means that the packaging market is forecasted to reach US$ 975.4 million by 2025 as reported by IBEF.
  • India’s continued growth in digital infrastructure is estimated to result in 907 million internet users by 2023 and 829 million mobile users by 2027. According to Gartner, 100 million consumers will shop in augmented reality by 2020.
  • The Digital Advertising Industry is projected to go up to INR 539 billion by 2024.
What does this mean for Communication Designers?

From print and publishing, layout and cover design, packaging and product design graphics, POP graphics to visual identity design, digital design, videography, branding languages, colour grading, e-catalogue design, advertising design, UX/UI, web design and app design communication designers can specialize in any area to build credibility and create a valuable and marketable career. To allow for one’s designs to resonate with the targeted audience, specializations can be streamlined by identifying one’s niche, a distinct segment of the market for which a person is best fitted. Along with that one needs the ability to visualise with clarity, observational skills, technical understanding, creative thought process and the proficiency to use storytelling as a key component in creating memorable user experiences.

Business models are changing and digital disruptions have made it vital for most businesses to pivot to a direct to consumer model. Advertising and PR firms are offering digital campaigns taking advantage of the increasing digitalization and advances in social media, search engine marketing, content marketing and e-commerce technology. With increasing internet penetration and smartphone users, online content marketing campaigns are more impactful and cost effective now. With the rise of voice assistants it’s evident that voice is driving the trend of designing without interface. The pandemic encouraged SMEs (small and medium scale enterprises) to rebrand to be competitive. Such increase in demand also means that one can start-up their own branding and communications design firm as an entrepreneur.

The Entrepreneurial Journey

The critical factor today is that industries are thinking about design differently even though the design practice remains the same across industries. To become an entrepreneur it’s important to identify:

  • What is your niche?
  • Are you able to pair up your training with knowledge of illustration, photography, motion design and interaction design?
  • Does your portfolio consistently show your best work? Does it show engagement? Does it document your thinking process and visualisation of ideas?
  • Are you routinely learning, reading voraciously and building your craft?
  • What do you have to offer? Why will they hire you?

Gaining experience and exposure, building a network of contacts, understanding pricing policies when working with established names in the industry is practically useful. Being an entrepreneur entails risks. It helps to be honest about one’s capacity and ability to take risks. Along with that understand the nuances of getting new clients, starting a side hustle, working as a freelancer, and later entrepreneur. Being abreast of industry standards in terms of tools and techniques, trends and integrated technology is essential. Simultaneously, one needs to be highly motivated, passionate, and adaptable and work hard on their own to creatively solve problems. You can use Social Media to showcase a record of what you see that reflects your perspective and experience of the world around you.

An entrepreneur’s identity centres around pushing one’s limit, challenging oneself to believe, think and dream big, finding like-minded people, and asking for help before taking the leap of faith to accomplish career goals.

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