Here is our round up of the news stories and industry articles that caught our eye during April 2022.

Design Council asks the public to take part in designing future train stations

The Design Council and Network Rail are launching the next phase of their initiative to reimagine the country’s railway stations by allowing the public to try out potential designs in virtual reality.

In the United Kingdom, there are around 2,000 small and medium train stations. Network Rail is now making an appeal to the British public, urging them to participate actively in a comprehensive programme that will result in the redesign of the majority of them.

Read the article in Design Week.

Beer company’s ‘misleading’ April Fools promotion sparks 40 complaints within hours

Bier Company’s April Fool’s Day campaign has backfired, with the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) receiving at least 40 complaints within hours of the joke being disclosed.

Customers of the Bier Company were duped into believing they had won a long-running monthly competition to obtain a ‘black card,’ which grants them a free lifelong membership to the ‘Bier Club.’

Read the article in Marketing Week.

This folding charger concept is designed to reduce electronic waste

Blond, a London-based design company, has unveiled a folding charger prototype that tries to alleviate the tech industry’s rising problem of electrical waste.

Instead of discarding the Fold multi-purpose charger when it became obsolete, people could repair and improve it. The disposal of chargers is a major issue. According to the European Commission, obsolete and underused chargers generate 11,000 tonnes of electrical trash each year.

Read the article in Design Week.

‘Don’t stalk, inspire’: why brands are failing to build long-term relationships

Sir John Hegarty argues that the growth of digital technology has led to firms’ fixation with “stalking” rather than “inspiring” consumers, which is affecting their capacity to form long-term partnerships.

He remarked today (7 April) at the World Federation of Advertisers’ Global Marketer Week that businesses have gotten “overawed” by technology and are unsure what to do with it. “Am I a brand that stalks or am I a brand that inspires?” he told marketers, emphasising that the greatest way to inspire is to be innovative.

Read the article in Marketing Week.

Morphy Richards rebrands to honour “the tension of form and function”

Morphy Richards’ branding has been updated by London consultancy Otherway in an attempt to break through the “sea of sameness” in the household electrics industry.

In 1936, product engineer Donal Morphy and his company partner Charles Richards co-founded Morphy Richards. Since then, the firm has expanded its product line to include anything from kettles to toasters and coffee makers.

Read the article in Design Week.

Four in ten marketers expect recruitment ‘boost’ over next three months

Over half of marketers (54.1%) anticipate their firms’ employment numbers will stay the same in the coming quarter, while just 7.1 percent expect job losses.

Despite the effects of inflation and the Ukraine crisis on businesses, marketers predict a “strong” recruiting outlook over the next three months.

According to IPA Bellwether research obtained specifically for Marketing Week, nearly four out of ten (38.8%) marketers have “strong plans” to increase employment inside their company.

Read the article in Marketing Week.

Jodrell Bank’s new visual identity hopes to inspire a “sense of awe”

Johnson Banks, a London-based design firm, has created a new corporate identity for Jodrell Bank, the research centre and observatory that houses the Lovell Telescope.

The University of Manchester presently owns and manages the Cheshire-based observatory, which was founded nearly 75 years ago. The Lovell Telescope, created by Bernard Lovell in the 1950s and previously the world’s biggest steerable radio telescope, is the centrepiece.

Read the article in Design Week.

Jason Chuang taps into buried emotions in his dreamlike illustrations

He used to go to a weekly painting class as a kid and soak up the stories his teacher told the students. Drawing in class made him uncomfortable, and he frequently left with “untouched blank paper” but a mind full of ideas. He moved on to study illustration in further education after producing drawings based on Naruto or Twilight in high school, and just graduated with an MA at the Royal College of Art in London.

Now that he is a working artist and illustrator, he refuses to compromise his style and consciously avoids using a formula in his work. “I prefer to think of each work as a fresh challenge, a new frontier for me.” It’s terrifying, thrilling, and sometimes painful, and I have to hold off on doing what I know would work when things don’t work out, but the payout is far more precious to me this way, so I’d rather trust the unknown and avoid following a pattern.

Read the article in Creative Review.

M&S, P&O, Morrisons: Everything that matters this morning

Marks and Spencer’s “Fresh Market Update” customer campaign has been revived, with the goal of highlighting the importance of British Select farmers in the company’s quality, value, and freshness.

Between April and September this year, 62 distinct commercials will be shown on television, as well as direct mail, emails, social media, and local Facebook groups.

Read the article in Marketing Week.