Oct. 2018

Discoverer of good things Discoverer of good things Discoverer of good things

Ryoko Kawahara/Chief Producer, Brand Design Research Studio, Design Research Division/Creative Director/Copywriter

Expanding horizons through listening and understanding

Ryoko Kawahara

Chief Producer, Brand Design Research Studio, Design Research Division/Creative Director/Copywriter

Born in Kanagawa Prefecture. After graduating from technical college, Kawahara was a clerical worker before becoming a copywriter. She joined the Nippon Design Center in 1998 and was in charge of copywriting for department stores under Makio Awano. Today, she handles all communication between customers and companies at the Brand Design Research Studio. She also worked as an interview staff member and was responsible for the text in the introductions starting with the first PEOPLE employee introduction section on the Nippon Design Center website. She also interviews people who interest her about their hobbies and interests. She has won the Asahi Advertising Award, the Mainichi Advertisement Design Competition Award, and the Tokyo Copywriters Club (TCC) Newcomer Award. She is also a TCC member.

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Hello, my name is Ryoko Kawahara. I am a copywriter at Nippon Design Center. In addition to client work, I am also in charge of interviewing staff for the NDC PEOPLE employee introductions. I always think of NDC as a shopping arcade. There are people of all ages here with different talents and backgrounds. Because it is a shopping arcade where a diverse group of people have come together, staff members work by asking for and sharing wisdom with each other. It is a very fun environment.

There have been eye-opening interviews while working on the PEOPLE interviews. I also like to interview people about their own personal hobbies and interests. So far, I have had the good luck to talk with a baker in front of an elementary school, a tenugui hand towel workshop, an old and newly renovated ryokan inn, and so on. It seems obvious, but talking to people like this made me realize the various people across Japan who work every day in very different environments. It is of course impossible to become a given person, but it is possible to understand them by listening to them. Rather than thinking about things within your own 50-meter radius, it is important to work with the awareness that there are many different perspectives in the world. And it is important to discover what kinds of designs and phrases will best communicate points found in a given interview.

Many people may think of professional copywriters as simply people who write, but I think there is more to the profession. Copywriters plan and edit around keywords, as well as help with facilitation. We should not be bound by the word “copywriter”—there are other titles that also fit. But, to rouse emotions in people and lift them up— I think being able to help with this is what makes being a copywriter so great. It is that simple.

Nippon Design Center also provides information on Facebook.