Addressing the world’s most complex challenges by designing specifically for social impact is a largely untapped market with a continuously increasing demand. However, designing for social impact isn’t simply about creating pretty objects for a good cause or selling rad merchandise and giving a percentage of the proceeds to charity. In its ideal form, designing for social impact is envisioning the impact you want to have for a community or individual, bringing stakeholders into the process, working toward sustainable solutions, measuring the difference you’re making, and sharing your results so that positive impact can spread across the world.

Hearing input directly from your customers can be daunting for a social entrepreneur. You’ve likely put everything on the line for an idea that you believe in and while you know that seeking input from customers can be valuable, it can be a confronting exercise! Many entrepreneurs avoid research because of this, but those who do know that the payoff is big.