The Difference Engine 2014
 

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The Difference Engine has relaunched with a new team, and renewed focus on helping companies improve their existing products, services, and customer experiences, and on helping companies identify ...

The Difference Engine has relaunched with a new team, and renewed focus on helping companies improve their existing products, services, and customer experiences, and on helping companies identify opportunities for innovation and organizational change.

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The Difference Engine 2014 Presentation Transcript

  • 1. We’re an insight-driven, 
 product strategy company
  • 2. We help businesses use experiments to develop insight About who your customers are, what they need, 
 and why they need it. ! We transform customer intimacy into a tangible, 
 renewable business asset. ! We work towards a strategy, not back from one. ! And then we set you up to succeed.
  • 3. “How do we equip our people to sustain innovation?” “Something isn’t going right. How do we diagnose the real problem - and then how do we cure it?” Small questions lead 
 to big opportunities We work with businesses who need: ! “How should we optimize our products & services?” OPPORTUNITIES TO IMPROVE OPPORTUNITIES TO INNOVATE “How do we improve the customer’s experience?” “How can we innovate - without jeopardizing our existing business?”“We are stagnating. Where will growth come from?”
  • 4. How We Work
  • 5. Case studies
  • 6. x Silverado Senior Living Silverado wanted to develop a new brand architecture 
 and marketing program. Together with our partner, 
 Equation Research, we determined that the real 
 question was what it would take to scale the brand 
 and the business as it grew from 5 states to 15. We worked with Silverado, their caregivers, and their 
 clients, to understand the caregiver decision-making 
 process, develop a clear value proposition, and improve core areas of their business and marketing. As a result, we recommended to the Board of Directors feedback mechanisms and incentives for at-home caregivers that would retain the best talent; street level signage and SEO changes - critical to lead generation and content marketing; and tools, content and methods for ‘mentoring’ family members through the decision-making process.
  • 7. x People.com Topics added to the queue by anyone on the team Topics evaluated by the team for importance & urgency Discussion guide created for next week 6-7 interviews with users, led by the product team Research summary of what was learned, what needs to be done, what feedback is needed The people.com product team had 
 the space and equipment to conduct 
 user research on an ongoing basis - 
 but needed the help to make it work. We determined that training and 
 processes were needed that would 
 make continuous customer interaction 
 part of their day-to-day design process. We trained the team to prioritize key business decisions, translate them into questions for research, select the right tools for discovering the answers, engage users in dialogue and co-creation, and share the results with the wider team. Weekly User Research
  • 8. x “The Netflix of Magazines” A media technology company, after some initial 
 success, was seeing slower growth. They 
 wanted to know what was causing customer 
 churn, and how to stop it. We started by looking at two sides of this 
 problem - customer acquisition and customer 
 retention/referral. As a product of the work we did in partnership 
 with Equation Research and through talking to 
 customers and looking at site and app analytics, we made strategic recommendations aimed at marketing and customer acquisition, user experience and onboarding, and customer retention and referral.
  • 9. About us
  • 10. Who we’ve worked with
  • 11. Farrah Bostic, 
 Founder Farrah believes that a customer-centric approach is essential to designing innovative products and services. She created The Difference Engine to help companies apply this approach to drive brand and business growth.  Her expertise in digital strategy and design; technology, web, and mobile trends; mobile utility; and product and service design ensures her clients’ brands and strategies deliver a seamless experience online and off. She has honed her expertise as an advisor to the world’s most respected brands, including Apple, Microsoft, Disney, Samsung and UPS. She has been a copywriter, digital creative director, group planning director, brand strategist, and innovations lead, working for some of the most creative and strategic agencies and consultancies in the world, including Wieden + Kennedy, TBWAChiatDay, Mad Dogs & Englishmen, Digitas, Hall & Partners, and OTX. farrah@thedifferenceengine.co
  • 12. Tendayi Viki, 
 Innovation Consultant Dr Tendayi Viki is an author and consultant. He holds a PhD in Psychology and an MBA. He has expertise in helping large enterprises develop their strategy to innovate like startups. He has worked as a consultant for several large organizations including Pearson, BP, GE, Whirlpool, Tetrapak and the Department of Trade and Industry (UK). ! He spent over 12 years in academia during which time he taught at the University of Kent, was a Research Fellow at Stanford University and Research Assistant at Harvard University. Dr Viki has previously co-founded several companies including Tasksauce and Research Innovations. He mentors and advises startups for Rockstart Accelerator in Amsterdam.
  • 13. Hilary Jones, 
 Strategist Hilary believes people-driven research has the potential to create a better tomorrow by shaping consumer and brand experiences. She employs immersive techniques to understand customer perspectives, their interactions with technology, and their relationships with brands and products. She strives to represent consumers in a new light and challenge companies and brands to innovate their communications, products and services. Hilary brings 5 years experience as a researcher and strategist. Starting her career at OTX/ Ipsos, she nimbly navigated the worlds of traditional qualitative methodologies with new digital and innovative approaches. Before joining The Difference Engine, she managed online communities and app-based research and strategy work for Kiosk. She has worked across categories including media, technology, healthcare, cosmetics and food and beverages for clients including AOL, Google, Jenny Craig, L’Oreal, PepsiCo, Reckitt Benckiser, Sony, Twitter, and Unilever. hilary@thedifferenceengine.co
  • 14. & Our preferred partner for quantitative research and analytics is Equation Research, a full service strategic research agency working with an extensive list of fortune 1000 clients. We have worked together on many projects, always with the same values at heart: • One size does not fit all - Equation believes in a tailored approach rather than tying clients to a specific methodology or model. • Humans aren't lab rats - Equation employs innovative interviewing methods that reflect how people make choices in the real world. • Business focus, not a research focus - Equation always stays focused on business outcomes for clients.
  • 15. rehabstudio We partner with rehabstudio, a digital design and production company, in a process called Triage, a rapid research and prototyping process for branded experiences 
 and products. The Triage process is a series of short creative and technology sprints, where we ideate, hack and prototype concepts, while developing insight into the user’s needs. The Difference Engine is able to provide low-cost, rapid access to users for iterative feedback on successive prototypes.
  • 16. & The Difference Engine and Christian Svanes Kolding work in partnership to tell stories that cultivate a deep sense of empathy with people. We believe good storytelling is good business. We work together to create: Branded content and documentary
 Personal ways of engaging with audiences, providing context and depth in ways that thirty-second media cannot. These can be lifestyle stories, an essays, a transmedia projects, or simply the distillation of a moment. Rapid prototypes, design fictions, proofs of concept
 Films start conversations about specific ideas and ask “what could be?” They are often open-ended questions that serve as ice-breakers for deeper conversations. Case studies and process films
 These capture the lessons and insights from a project while the memories are still fresh. they communicate a company’s DNA by creating legacies of approach that can be shared by anyone connected to the project. Christian’s work has been presented at institutions such as the Museum of Modern Art and the Museum of The City of New York. His commercial projects include collaborations with clients such as IBM, Westin Hotels, Nokia, SYPartners, Ixda and Sandbox. His films, both documentary and fiction, have been shown in festivals across the globe.
  • 17. How can we help? 62 1st Pl., No. 3 Brooklyn, NY 11231 +1.718.690.9291 info@thedifferenceengine.co