• An initiative lead by Design Forum Finland starts with a tailored look into PR tools.

    New Finnish design will be on the pedestal in 2010, when Finnish design export events take place in cities such as London, Tokyo and New York. Apart from being cultural events, they are important business opportunities for designers, putting their pitching and PR-skills to the test.

    Design Forum Finland has in partnership with the Finnish Institute in London co-ordinatined a pilot training programme aiming to support professional development for Finnish designers in international markets. The training is directed at Finnish designers with upcoming exhibitions in London and Tokyo in 2010. The training is funded by the Finnish Ministry of Education and Culture.

    • A key to international success is to understand the logics of the local market and media in different countries and to tailor your PR-skills to fit the context, says Hanna Harris, Director of the Arts & Culture Programme at the Finnish Institute in London.

    The pilot project started at the end of March in Helsinki with a one-day workshop, aiming to coach the participants to develop their PR and communication skills with the international media and customers in mind. Producer and design editor Katja Lindroos and creative director Saku Tuominen from Idealist Group Oy and Zodiak Entertainment ran the coaching in Helsinki.

    • There is an enormous amount of talented designers in Finland, with excellent references, but they are not that good on passing on this information to others, says Lindroos, setting up the goal for the day.

    During the day, the designers learnt how to create a story for their products and how to plan and execute a successful PR campaign. Additionally the training involves personal coaching and feedback for the participants' own PR-materials.

    The second phase of the training takes place in London in June 2010, focusing on the features of the local design and media market in London. The training programme will continue later in the year with an evaluation of Finnish design export projects.

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