If you’re a regular to the blog, you’ll know we’re huge fans of design thinking. Here’s how this approach paves the way for creating empathy and a deeper understanding of your target market.
To tailor the ideal solution for anyone, we first need to understand our customer’s needs. If ever there was a blanket statement that applied to all businesses right across the board, it’s that one right there. And the only way to understand what makes our target market tick, is to do the research and digging that’s required.
After all, you don’t want to be that business who offers the lactose intolerant customer a cheese pizza. That’s like offering Superman kryptonite for brekky and displays a real lack of understanding and knowledge of your customers.
If you’re an avid follower of our work (of course you are!), you would have read up on Woven’s design thinking approach previously. To recap, this human-centric problem solving approach combines both analytic and evidence based processes so that our team designs solutions that fit people’s needs. It may sound boring to you but this kind of problem solving is what we enjoy most as it brings out our best work. Some people lose hours shopping, our team of experts lose hours thinking of every aspect of a solution to complex problems.
There are 3 key stages involved in design thinking:
These stages help our team to identify the problem, generate ideas with knowledge of the circumstances at hand and then establish a prototype solution. The design thinking process needs to be replicated several times, each time applying an innovative approach with the intent to deliver a customised solution that improves upon the previous prototype.
The process sees our team working very closely and collaborating with our clients to build a strong, empathic relationship that helps us to understand their target market. This helps us to be as knowledgable as possible about their customers’ situation and goals. Together, we can then develop a solution that solves customers’ issues, while also catering for the business’ needs.
During the development phase, a prototype embarks on several stages - the prototype is then eventually incorporated into the existing solution. This allows our clients to get a feel for the solution and to test it with a selection of their customers to gauge whether we can improve it further before final implementation. Involving customers at this point helps us to improve the customer experience and engagement levels. Research proves that this approach leads customers to feeling more involved and empowered during the design phase (Van Doorn et al., 2010) - this empathetic approach also assists our team in establishing the goals that will best satisfy end users (Phifer, 2015 ).
Of course, we can’t possibly write about design thinking without referring to innovation, which is one of the most distinctive characteristics of the process (Brown, 2009, Tschimmel , 2012). Design thinking sees people engaging with one another via storytelling, observing and empathising with a given scenario and working together to identify the problems on-hand that need to be solved. From there, the relevant parties collaborate to work towards the best possible solution.
Looking to deliver your customers with the most polished user experience possible? Contact Woven to chat about how design thinking can solve your most complex technology problems.