Forum 2010




Hidden Art Forum 2010, UBS

Hidden Art Forum 2010, UBS

Wednesday 16 June
9:30am – 6:00pm
UBS Investment Bank
1 Finsbury Avenue
London, EC2M 2PP

Hidden Art Annual Forum –“Innovation in a Recession”

New!-Helping Creative Businesses to Take Advantage of Opportunities

Not content with merely surviving a recession, the Hidden Art Innovation in a Recession Forum focussed on providing strategies and tools for design businesses to thrive as the global economy struggles back to its feet. Featuring a host of industry professionals, the 11th Forum gave an informed voice on developing work to secure new sales.

Summary of the day delivered by the Chair Guy Beggs


  • Know your buyer, do your research so you can pitch to people who are right for you.
  • Have a Unique Selling Point (USP)
  • Be consistent in your approach to all customers
  • Don’t follow short-term High St fashion
  • Consider:  originality, green issues, and being good to work with
  • Stay lean and flexible, minimize costs, expand customer base, consider commissions
  • Would you buy it? What customer are you after?
  • A story behind an idea sells!
  • Be sure you can deliver on time. Have backup in case of being let down by a manufacturer
  • Calculate all costs, be realistic and don’t forget VAT.
  • Value your  retailer, don’t sell the same product to someone else for less, especially if it is just around the corner!
  • Retailers are always looking for what might be missing from their range, so do your research and be opportunistic.
  • Have a good E presence and make sure you maximize coverage through shows, design websites etc


  • Turn ideas into action with help
  • Develop your own toolkit and be clear about what you bring to the table, remember an equal shares approach to partnerships avoids tears
  • Respect, support, openness, organization and generosity make for successful collaborations
  • Look to one-to-one collaborations as well as with larger groups
  • Look at web based collaborations through e.g. Google’s MindMeister, Twiddla, Stixy etc,
  • Set up a blog, use twitter
  • Consider collaboration with a large company, you sell for less but are free to concentrate on design
  • Look at collaborations with a design agency and a retailer, showrooms, galleries, museums or large exhibitions
  • Get on top of Intellectual Property issues, look up ACID ( Anti Copying in Design)
  • Look into mentoring. This can help develop clarity of purpose, marketing awareness, better business management, new product development etc

Product Development

  • Define your business Creativity sells
  • Risks bring rewards, big risks can bring big rewards
  • Add value by design
  • An innovative approach to product development can come from unexpected quarters or simply out of life experience
  • Be innovative in systems, process and materials
  • Aim high but don’t forget core business
  • Brand association can affect perceived value
  • Consider developing a business plan
  • Fantastic product but how to take it forwards: seek funding
  • Obtaining finance: Business Angel or Venture Capitalist, first emotive second just £££’s so know your audience
  • Prepare your strategy, have a vision


Leave a Reply