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Designing impactful experiences - starting with non-users


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Slides from my presentation at Design by Fire cafe' - on the 18th of November 2013 (

AirBnb, Skype, Nintendo Wii, Netflix, Tata Nano,… Recent evolutions in technologies are fostering new services and experiences, which shake incumbent companies and business models. Of all contexts where this has happened, the most radical and disruptive is probably the African one. Despite the many challenges — dumbphones instead of smartphones, low literacy level, scarcity of PCs — we have seen innovation flourish in the past few years. Starting with the creation of services for underserved populations and niches of people who don't use the typical or current solutions.
Showcasing some of the most innovative start-ups in the African continent, Franco presented some of challenges of designing products and services when driven by impact rather than features. He also reflected on the learnings and how these can be applied to user experience projects for products in European contexts.

Published in: Design, Business, Technology

Designing impactful experiences - starting with non-users

  1. 1. Designing impactful experiences, starting with non-users Franco Papeschi Service Designer, Social Innovator #30  
  2. 2. Mobile Entrepreneurship Labs People with passion, ideas and a bit of dev/biz skills Mobile start-ups
  3. 3. Get out of the building Research current troubles and workarounds 3
  4. 4. Living labs approach Co-creation engaging local communities 4
  5. 5. Contextual enquiries Investigate tools and practices of potential users; understand motivations. 5
  6. 6. Concept development Individual work and team efforts to come up with solutions which are not the tried and tested (and ineffective) ideas that come on top of everybody’s mind
  7. 7. Testing, of course Paper prototypes, the best human invention since Post-its ® and Sharpies ® 7
  8. 8. Coding sessions HTML, CSS, javascript, PHP, and so on…
  9. 9. Experiments Micro-pilots, technology probes, beta versions of key features. 9
  10. 10. Business model experimentation Prototyping their way to revenue streams 10
  11. 11. Performance Disruptive innovation Pace of technological progress Sustaining innovation leaps What people can use it for Disruptive innovation leaps Time
  12. 12. Performance Disruptive innovation Time
  13. 13. Disruptive innovation in Africa
  14. 14. MPESA - Kenya 80 % 20 % Has bank account Doesn’t have a bank account Saving money, protecting money from thief / loss, repaying loans, paying bills, transfer money home
  15. 15. Money transfer and payments for the un-banked 17
  16. 16. At m:lab East Africa
  17. 17. Eneza Education IMPACT: increase rate of higher education in Africa ADOPTION: feedback loop student-teacher ADOPTION: practice and earn confidence
  18. 18. Key aspects of disruptive innovations
  19. 19. 1 Focus on people who lack skills, access, money or time to use current solutions
  20. 20. 2 Identify ‘jobs-to-be-done’ which trigger adoption and foster the desired impact
  21. 21. 3 Design a minimum viable product: cheaper, simpler, fits into the ecosystem
  22. 22. What to do?
  23. 23. Focus on extremes Become the advocate of the non-users, just for once.
  24. 24. Find the *real* jobs-to-be-done What are the functional, emotional, social problems we are trying to solve?
  25. 25. future-proof. In three years time, it will still be good.” MY BUYING CRITERIA MY GOALS Human interaction End goal Cutting edge Impulse To have a competitive advantage. Quality Price Value for money Experience goal To feel like an entrepreneur. Seduction & incentives Brand Hands-on Reliability Service & after sales Future proof & compatability Features & functionality Recommendations Aesthetics & design ATTITUDE Image I AM A 34 YEAR-OLD COMMERCIAL PRINTER IN A SMALL COMPANY I have to confess that I absolutely love technology. I have the best job in the world which is to source and buy cutting-edge products. I spend ages online looking for new products, services and suppliers. The thing I worry about most is remaining competitive and effective in the market. Characteristics When I buy for the business I am willing to take a risk buying an unfamiliar product • Monitoring recent technological that I think can help me create a niche. If developments the need arises I will make buying decisions • Pro-active very quickly and worry later about the product performance. To make sure I can • Tech savvy and curious about technology do this and still maintain a reliable business • Hands-on I have to maintain a close relationship with Being innovative and inspired by my suppliers.I am invited (and go to) trade • technology shows and symposia. It tends to be the manufacturers who invite me. I am always looking for new ways to interest and keep my clients and prevent them from going next door. Recently I added web design to the range of services I offer; I have even hired in-house designers. I expect my suppliers to know what they We also print on advertising tokens. are talking about. I depend on their technical expertise and recommendations. If one of my clients wants something we I want to be informed about the latest don’t do in-house, I will be more than products and I expect my suppliers to willing to outsource rather than have my do just that. They should also send me client go elsewhere. samples that I can test so I am ready to introduce the products to my clients. MY RESEARCH SOURCES Most important source Manufacturer’s websites Retailers websites Community websites Catalogues Newsletters Demos Knowledgeable friends Web Comparisons websites Blogs Independent shops Offline Friends Suppliers Independent shops People Leaflets Staff in store Peers Forums Reviews websites High Street shops Colleagues Specialist magazines Other sources used Samples Business directories Suppliers Where the product is available Buys from Suppliers Wherever is the cheapest WHAT KEEPS ME AWAKE AT NIGHT… …is competition, service and compatibility: will I need to train the staff/client? Will I have an immediate customer service? Will I be able to use it immediately with my current equipment?
  26. 26. Go beyond co-creation Make things as fast as possible. Pursue the riskiest assumptions first, and make those parts of the experience tangible sooner than the rest.
  27. 27. Prototype & test many business models Pricing, customer support, partners, organisational processes are part of the design solution. Don’t discard them just because you can’t wireframe it.
  28. 28. Innovation project never ends Experiments get repeated and learning is continuous. It’s not about handingover a report: help make the machine that builds the product
  29. 29. Thanks Franco Papeschi Service Designer, Social Innovator, Start-up advisor +31 6 11 83 17 35 themepap bobbywatson