Designing Happiness

Lippincott had an idea that considering the anticipation and afterglow of an experience might be more important than designing the experience itself.

So we decided to test the theory at SXSW. We wrangled Disney's former Chief Creative Executive, Bruce Vaughn and SoulCycle's VP of Brand Strategy, Gabby Cohen to join Lippincott's Director of Experience Innovation, Randall Stone for a SX session we dubbed, "Designing Happiness." While all three brought insights and anecdotes, the true experiment was designed into the session itself.

For the 600 people who packed the space (hundreds more were turned away at the door due to lack of space) the session was transformed with a high-energy playlist, happiness fun facts and video surprises.  After an hour of discussion, lightning round, happy voting and laughter, we ended with a surprise — eight golden puppies arrived to steal the show.

People climbed over one another like the paparazzi with iPhones outstretched. They shared stories of their own pets back home while waiting for their turn for puppy snuggles. And of course, they all but dissolved from the sloppy puppies kisses. The happiness was palpable. In case there was any skepticism that you can design, not just for solving problems, but for solving one of humanity’s biggest problems, I can attest, if you can make someone smile when walking out of an hour-long talk in a hotel ballroom? You can make someone smile just about anywhere. 

We were interviewed about our work by the kind folks at HOW Design
And you can read more in this killer Fast Company article showing How to Design Happiness

Work done with a fabulous team at Lippincott