Using Design & Data For a Better Tomorrow in Los Angeles

This article covers some of the most insightful people of Los Angeles who belong to the Goldhirsh Foundation. The foundation was formed to build a prism of bright colors for all Los Angelenos including all businessmen and other large and small entities. In 2011, the foundation launched a program called LA2050. This was reported to have been developed in order to visualize the future potential of positive outcomes of research and development in LA and track the city’s progress towards that vision. The figure, ‘2050’, denotes the time period that the mission is expected to be achieved in.

The Goldhirsh Foundation is a non-profit organization. This became the root that other challenges stemmed from; for instance, there was a question of whether it was possible for a non-profit organization to reach out to above a million people in the city and help them voice out their opinions and let them share their perspectives and ideas on how they thought they could contribute to the progression of LA’s vision? It turned out that there was a two-word answer to this question: digital design.

The members of this foundation, therefore, came up with impressive strategies to incorporate design and build a brand for LA2050 through social illustrations and spread the word in the entire city. Following are some such strategies employed by the foundation to help visualize a better future for Los Angeles.

Interactive Twitter Sessions

Imagine reading these two headlines on different places. Which one would you find yourself more inclined towards?

  1. Don’t miss our information session.
  2. Rush towards our Twitter fun!

If you’re anything like The Goldhirsh Foundation, you probably chose number 2! Why though? Because you were more towards positivity and entertainment. Although talking about serious issues such as distribution of income and pollution was of utmost importance, LA2050 aimed for sheer optimism in its interactive sessions. This was done through the Twitter parties where it held live sessions for people to participate in.

twitter interactions

In the Twitter sessions, the foundation heads invited several other non-profit organizations during the sessions for instance, in the last session, collaborating with Heal the Bay helped them create proper graphics to promote their ideas and bring people to participate. The sessions also involved fun Q/A sessions in which everyone who attended was encouraged to be as interactive as they wanted to be. This helped them gain more social media followers and effectively help achieve marketing quota for the month.

Engaging Instagram Graphics

One of the most rewarding of social media platforms is Instagram. Megan Park, The Social Innovation and Design Controller of The Goldhrish Foundation stated that they aimed for LA2050 to become a ‘visual brand’.

engaging instagram graphics

This was because of the higher power of pictures to affect people’s minds-a power that is much higher than worded tweets. Instagram is reported to have provided the foundation with a way to spread its message through content as well as graphics. Here are some of their Instagram posts that helped them publicize LA2050.

Release Frequent Email Newsletters

Another way that LA2050 has devised to go public is through their bi-monthly newsletters. With an audience of about 130,000 people to read their newsletters, LA2050 has started featuring different topics in their newsletters such as recent news and headlines pertaining to the developments in LA and upcoming events. These newsletters also feature information on different opportunities that people can avail through such developments in Los Angeles.

send frequent email newsletter

The aim of such newsletters was to keep the people of LA informed on the progress of the work being done in LA. The brand has seen immense success in a few years; this is because it uses different techniques of branding and incorporates design in its strategies to keep their audience’s interest intact.

Also Read: Are Logos Real Branding Heroes 

Visualization of Data Reports

Looks really matter when it comes to a whole lot of information that you need to spread around. Here’s why. LA2050 incorporates different design and visualization techniques in their reports. It’s really commendable because it’s a completely different story when you actually work to achieve the goals you set. The reports created are meant to improve and assess the quality of life in Los Angeles. Through these digital reports, the members of the Goldhirsh Foundation measure the standard of living of the people of LA. These reports also proved to be helpful in analyzing the progress of the ongoing work.

data reporting

However, since reports are long, they need content that is engaging and informative and that is why, LA2050 has devised several ways to keep the readers indulged.

This is where data visualization enters the picture. For the heavy stats, percentages and figures, LA2050 illustrates digital graphs that are designed to hold their audience’s attention. Some samples of such reports can be found in a report about the 2016 my LA2050 Grants Challenge.

Notice how LA2050 has incorporated vibrant colors in headings and subheadings that really brings out the impact it has on the readers. These strategies are designed to keep the audience interested and make these reports easy to interpret. Megan Park claimed that these initiatives were primarily aimed at spreading civil awareness in the city and to bring about a sense of responsibility and belonging in the Angelenos. It is therefore, entirely due to digital design strategies that LA2050 has found ways to popularize its brand.

Developing a Digital Brand

The fact that it is through such digital development that LA2050 has found its way to its audience, speaks a lot about the brand’s potential and progress.

creating a digital brand


It is reported that it was impossible for the brand to create such an impact on its audience without making use of the power that the digital world was infused with.

LA2050’s struggle with design and digital brand speaks volumes about the significance of the digital design world.

In fact, Megan Park talked about how ‘essential’ it is to have a ‘digital brand’. He also pointed out how important social engagement was and that it was entirely through social engagement coupled with digital design that LA2050 managed to spread its message across the city.

Such strategies did a lot to contribute to the winning success of the brand which works as a trigger to kick up some great action in the city thereby empowering the Angelenos to work better towards their mission.

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