Customer Research - Briefly Explained

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Understanding customers is a fundamental activity of professional Product Management. There are many ways of gathering research that will help develop this understanding and this "Briefly Explained" presentation provides context to the What, Why and When of these different methods.

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  • Version 1.2
  • Customer Research - Briefly Explained

    1. 1. Customer Research Explained
    2. 2. “Supposing is good. Finding out is better.” Mark Twain
    3. 3. Customer research helps us: 1. Understand what problems customers want solved
    4. 4. Customer research data enables us to: 2. Analyse how important these problems are to customers
    5. 5. Customer research helps us determine: 3. How much customers might pay for a solution to their problem
    6. 6. Having customer research means we can decide: 4. What products and features to develop
    7. 7. Having customer research means we have: 5. Rich anecdotes that bring the product idea to life!
    8. 8. Without research, we make decisions in a bubble … far away from reality
    9. 9. Research SHOULD BE an ongoing activity
    10. 10. So What Research Can We Do?
    11. 11. The mix of research we undertake depends on the question(s) that we want answered..
    12. 12. … and the stage of the Product Delivery process that we need answers for.
    13. 13. 1. Will the idea solve a lucrative customer problem? The question we want answered at the Innovate phase …
    14. 14. Ideate • Past Research Review previous research data that may have been commissioned for other projects. Both Quantitative & Qualitative, Secondary Research Source • Cultural Probe Exploratory method using various tools (postcards, journey maps, cameras, journals) to understand personal context and circumstance. Qualitative, Primary Research Source Explore • Literature Review Review of any relevant journals, articles periodicals that might provide insights about customer trends and behaviour. Qualitative, Secondary Research Source • Ethnographic Study Immersion in the customer’s natural environment to observe, document social life & make interpretations about its meaning. Qualitative, Primary Research Source • Focus Groups An interactive group session where target customers are asked about their opinions, beliefs and attitudes about a topic or idea. Qualitative, Primary Research Source • Competitor Analysis Technically not customer research but much can be gleaned from understanding what resonates with customers from competitor products. Qualitative, Secondary Research Source Focus • Online Questionnaires A list of written questions that can be both close ended or open ended. A range of methods can be used to design the questionnaire such as choice modelling. Both Quantitative & Qualitative, Primary Research Source We answer the question by doing this type of customer research … Bella & Hanington, Universal Methods of Design, 2112 | Ladner, Practical Ethnography, 2012
    15. 15. 2. Who are these customers and what product features do they consider desirable? The question we want answered at the Design phase …
    16. 16. Immerse • One on One Face / Telephone Interviews One on one structure or unstructured interviews to understand the customer’s perception about a topic of idea or more information about their personal circumstances. Qualitative, Primary Research Source • Contextual Inquiry A semi-structured interview method to obtain information about the context of use, where customers are first asked a set of standard questions and then observed and questioned while they interact in their own environments. . Qualitative, Primary Research Source • Diary Studies An artefact that enables customers to capture thoughts and actions about their life. Combination of audio, photos, text, video. Qualitative, Secondary Research Source Design • Card Sorting A technique that enables researches to understand how customers categorise content, information. Qualitative, Primary Research Source • Kano Analysis Method for classifying customer needs and determining what features to add or subtract. Both Qualitative & Quantitative, Primary Research Source • Eyetracking Tracks the eye movement of customers who are looking at a product or interface to determine what customers are looking at or ignoring. Qualitative, Primary Research Source We answer the question by doing this type of customer research … Usability Body of Knowledge, www.usabilitybok.org
    17. 17. 3. Can the customer use the product? 4. What messages resonate with buyers? The questions we want answered at the Implement phase …
    18. 18. Build • Usability Testing Method for determining the usability of a product with the target market to ensure that customers can complete certain tasks and use the product as intended. Qualitative, Primary Research Source Prepare • A/B Testing Method for testing 2 versions of the message (call to action, value proposition, promotional offer etc) to determine which message the target customer group prefers. Qualitative, Primary Research Source • Brand Surveys A technique for assessing the appeal of the brand and if the product aligns with the brand promise. Qualitative, Primary Research Source We answer the questions by doing this type of customer research … Paras Chopra, The Ultimate Guide to AB Testing, http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2010/06/24/the-ultimate-guide-to-a-b-testing/
    19. 19. 5. Why did the customer buy or not buy the product? The questions we want answered during the day to day …
    20. 20. Day to Day Product Management • Win/Loss Analysis A formal, data driven program to gather feedback from customers and lost prospects to understand the problems or attractiveness of the sales process and the products being sold. Qualitative, Primary Research Source • Analytics Technically not customer research but it does enable the business to understand customer activity and patterns to improve product performance. Powerful when combined with qualitative research. Quantitative, Primary Research Source • Surveys A face to face or telephone method for collecting information from customers. Bella & Hanington (p172) describe various methods: • Closed – forced choice • Open – broad with no set response • General – view on big picture • Specific – focused on details • Comparative – asks for judgement on 2 or more alternatives • Hypothetical – asks to speculate about behaviour or actions • Requests for suggestions – new ideas, opinions Survey conducted online is known as a questionnaire Qualitative, Primary Research Source We answer the questions by doing this type of customer research … Bella & Hanington, Universal Methods of Design, 2112 | Ladner, Practical Ethnography, 2012
    21. 21. So Who Is Doing What Research?
    22. 22. Is it … User Experience Product Management Marketing Brand
    23. 23. Sometimes it seems everyone(!) in the company is doing customer research
    24. 24. And so they should…
    25. 25. … because a single research project cannot provide the answers to all questions for everyone
    26. 26. Each team (UX, Marketing, Product & Brand) has a different lens when conducting research
    27. 27. UX wants to understand the user, user tasks, behaviours, goals and the environment …
    28. 28. 28 Learning What People Do Learning How Many People Will Pay & How Much? Learning What People Think, Say & Feel Learning About Problems To Be Solved UX QuantitativeQualitative AttitudinalBehavioural The foundation of this matrix was developed by Christian Rohrer, When to Use Which User Experience Research Methods, Nielsen Norman Group, 2008
    29. 29. …so that they may create a delightful experience
    30. 30. Product conducts research to uncover market opportunities or to test hypotheses …
    31. 31. 31 Learning What People Do Learning How Many People Will Pay & How Much? Learning What People Say & Feel Learning About Problems To Be Solved PRODUCT QuantitativeQualitative AttitudinalBehavioural The foundation of this matrix was developed by Christian Rohrer, When to Use Which User Experience Research Methods, Nielsen Norman Group, 2008
    32. 32. …so that they may determine if the idea is valuable and is lucrative for the business
    33. 33. Marketing undertakes research to understand what buying reasons appeal to buyers …
    34. 34. 34 Learning What People Do Learning How Many People Will Pay & How Much? Learning What People Think, Say & Feel Learning About Problems To Be Solved MARKETING QuantitativeQualitative AttitudinalBehavioural The foundation of this matrix was developed by Christian Rohrer, When to Use Which User Experience Research Methods, Nielsen Norman Group, 2008
    35. 35. …so that they can drive demand and increase sales
    36. 36. Brand tests customer sentiment to understand if the brand resonates with customers …
    37. 37. 37 Learning What People Do Learning How Many People Will Pay & How Much? Learning What People Think, Say & Feel Learning About Problems To Be Solved BRAND QuantitativeQualitative AttitudinalBehavioural The foundation of this matrix was developed by Christian Rohrer, When to Use Which User Experience Research Methods, Nielsen Norman Group, 2008
    38. 38. …so that they may fulfil the brand promise and grow customer loyalty
    39. 39. Together….
    40. 40. 40 Learning What People Do Learning How Many People Will Pay & How Much? Learning What People Think, Say & Feel Learning About Problems To Be Solved BRAND QuantitativeQualitative AttitudinalBehavioural The foundation of this matrix was developed by Christian Rohrer, When to Use Which User Experience Research Methods, Nielsen Norman Group, 2008 MARKETING PRODUCT UX
    41. 41. …. we provide richer insights and analysis to better understand the customer
    42. 42. So How Do We Start?
    43. 43. Step 1: Establish where you’re at in the Product Delivery process.
    44. 44. Step 2: Most importantly, determine the question you want answered?
    45. 45. Step 3: Is there any previous research material that can help answer the question?
    46. 46. Step 4: If no, select a research method or a mix of methods that will provide you with the answer you need.
    47. 47. Go on… kick off your research!
    48. 48. Connect with Brainmates 48 Brainmates Group @Brainmates #prodmgmt Facebook.com/Brainmates www.brainmates.com.au info@brainmates.com.au + 61 2 9923 8147

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