Adobe’s CMO magazine spent the entire month of October celebrating Creativity and Design Led Thinking. Among the many articles highlighted, three were of particular interest to Advanis and the work that we do every day:
“Designers used to dream their dreams and respond to briefs. Their response was seen as the jumping-off point for a design. That’s happening less and less as the customer, or “user,” takes centre stage.” (Source: Simon Manchipp)
As a critical component of a massive redesign of their retail store footprint, our client engaged in multiple stages of consumer research, ensuring that customer journeys and needs were the jumping off point for the redesigned retail locations, not the assumptions of the designers.
This article highlighted ways that organizations who prioritize design thinking outperform their peers. We particularly like this quote:
Design-led firms consciously put the customer first, with 46% of design leaders citing an emotional bond with customers as a defining characteristic of an advanced design practice. (Source: Adobe/Forrester)
In our experience, research questions have evolved from “what does my consumer want” to “what makes my consumer happy/unhappy, and why”. Research is moving towards an emotive understanding of the experience of using products and services. For example, we recently followed a number of consumers through their experience of requesting assistance from their bank after a negative experience. We wanted to understand the urgency of the situation, if it was an emotional or rational experience, and what the bank could do to delight their customer by the end of this journey.
“Experience design needs to be granular because experiences are granular at their very essence. Applying this mindset will give you a secret weapon in winning the hearts of customers.” (Source: Adobe)
Following a customer throughout their entire purchase journey, across channels, time and place, is critical to understanding all of the little moments that influence the ultimate purchase decision. For example, working with a retailer with both online and bricks & mortar locations, we combined observational research with consumer and employee interviews, and expert interviews to generate a broad view of the in-store experience, and the ways in which in-store customers interact with the store.
Lori Reiser is a Principal Consultant at Advanis. Her consulting engagements focus on ensuring that the consumer is heard at the strategic table - reducing risk in marketing decision making.
Lori can be reached by calling 888-944-9212, via e-mail, or on twitter @LoriReiser