Adding emotion to functionality

Fritz Hansen has produced high design furniture for generations. Mostly by Danish designers like Arne Jacobsen, Piet Hein and Hans J. Wegner, but also a few foreign designers have had their design produced by the highly acclaimed Danish Furniture company.


When Annette started at Fritz Hansen the first concern she had when looking from a marketers perspective was the lack of emotions.

The designer furniture was presented as products & design objects with physical features and functions.

Focus was on form and function, but somehow in a very rational way. Not as brands with emotional expressions. Remembers Annette.

The furniture needed a ‘human side’ that focused on the emotional as well as the functional benefits for the users. 

The first new product Annette got involved in was a new office chair by Burkhard Vogtherr. The chair was unique in a lot of ways. It’s flexible laminated shell and flat springs made it the most comfortable chair to sit and move in, and the upholstery had a loose and casual cotton cover you could changed depending on your mood. 

Of course these functional features was important in the presentation, says Annette.

But our focus was on the benefits and feeling you gained from these features: The feeling of freedom.

The chair – or series of chairs – was named Independence and launched with visuals and words expressing the feelings of using the chair.


It soon became obvious that Fritz Hansen needed a corporate identity

Fritz Hansen is much more than a factory – it’s one of the most important institutions in the history of Danish Design – inspiring designers all over the world with the constant focus on simplicity in both function and form combined with the highest degree of craftsmanship and simplicity.

Nobody knew that.

Most people knew our furniture. Or at least the Arne Jacobsen classics like The Egg, The Swan and The Ant.

But except for a very limited crowd of designers and furniture trade people, nobody knew about Fritz Hansen’s influence on Danish Design for more than 100 years. And that the company had a unique range of design furniture with basic design qualities in common.

From a marketing point of view that was waste of money. Without a corporate brand to remind people about the design and quality features that all Fritz Hansen Furniture have in common, future products wouldn’t gain extra value from Fritz Hansen’s originality and heritage from the Design world. So we needed a corporate brand Annette says.

To create a corporate brand that could endorse all Fritz Hansen’s furniture the strategy was to:

  1. give Fritz Hansen the credit for the best known classics.
  2. demonstrate that Fritz Hansen had a unique collection of furniture.
  3. add emotions and human feel to the company.


The new visual concept was something completely different and – and to most people in the business and – very unexpected.

Our target group already knew how The Ant or The Swan looked.

So we could play with emotions associated with the design and show the furniture in completely unexpected settings. Annette tells.

Sounds intriguing? 

Well, have a look.

The first add in Fritz Hansen’s new non-function-emotion-only campaign was prize winning add: The Ant.