When talking about creating better products, one of the main question is: „What’s the experience someone is having on a day-to-day basis?“. I recently read Minda Zetlins great article „4 secrets to getting inside your customers heads“. This article highlights four extreme research tools to get to the heart of user experience. So I asked myself, what does it mean for me? Here some thoughts how easy it is to follow those secrets for a startup in the IT business:
Especially when talking about IT projects, it is often very easy to add some build-in technology that really shows how people are using your software. This provides insight whether your customers use the product the way you had planned it.
One of the best ways to tell how consumers use a product is to use it yourself. OK, you view on it might be a little biased but you had intentions how things should look like or „feel“ like. Try it for yourself and explore the corners and edges that has the product. Figure out where it hurts, to achieve a particular goal within your software. You never can learn these things just by observing others.
„One problem with architecture, is that its prototypes for buildings are small enough to fit on a coffee table. Instead, he believes in building life-size prototypes and seeing how people actually use them.“ The same goes for IT projects. I would say „life-size“ prototyping means not only to show screens but also to show workflows, links and interactions. This gives a much better view on how your product might feel like and immediately shows edges and bumps.
Sometimes the best way to learn about customer behavior is to go where customers are. See how your customers use your product with their mindset and in their environment. Find some early adaptors, show them your product and observe your customers while they use your software. And they tell you much more: Face-to-face customer feedback refines or validates every component of the startup’s business model, not just the product itself. This is where you can learn most from a customer perspective.
I’m sure you can adapt these four secrets, when you think about your business. Your input is important in keeping us fresh and staying in touch. We appreciate your time and thank you for sharing your thoughts with us.
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