Innovation Games
Focus Groups
Briefing for [Client] Observers

Prepared by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D. – January 2009
Feedback from Users Is

•    Helpful to improving products
•    Surprising in content
•    Easy to collect
•    Challengin...
Traditional Focus Groups

•  Moderator uses script to stimulate discussion
•  Participants report their behavior and prefe...
Design Games

•  Games can shed light on issues such as 
   –  What customers donʼt like about your product
   –  Customer...
Goals for the February 2 & 3
           Design Games

•  Present proposed features of a cellphone + web plan
   to support...
Participants

•  All ages (20’s - 60’s), diverse professions, mix of men
   and women in all groups
•  All have stated des...
February 2009 – 4 Sessions

•  Monday, February 2
   –  8:30 - 11:30 am (English Speakers)
   –  5:30 - 8:30 pm (Spanish S...
Agenda for a Session




     Prepared for [Client] by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D.   8
Game: Buy a Feature

•  Divide group into 2 for                   •  Results expected
   each session                     ...
Game: Remember the Future
•  People work individually                         •  Results
•  They contribute items         ...
[Client] Staff and Friends
            as Observers
•  In the room with participants
•  No direct spoken interaction with ...
Role of Observers

•  Capture specific verbal and non-verbal behavior
   –    Quotes from participants
   –    Side remark...
Observers DO

•  Identify who said what about which items
    Donna: “I hate vegetables” (in response
    to item urging h...
Observers DON’T
•  Make interpretations
    The daily reminders should be thrown out
    because Group 3 hates them.
•  Ju...
Expected outcomes

•  Shared and deepened understanding of consumer
   engagement with digital technology (cell phone, tex...
Debriefing

•  Immediate (~30 min after each session)
   –  Quick impressions, review notecards, start to categorize,
    ...
Questions?
Your turn…




                                                    Nancy Frishberg
                            ...
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Observer Briefing [Client]

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Observers are briefed about the goals of the Innovation Games® sessions, and their role and contributions to the design research effort. The client organization (not named here, but shown as [Client]) is building software to help individuals manage their activity levels and dietary changes. Observers are employees or supporters of the Client. Participants in the sessions were recruited specifically for the occasion.

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Observer Briefing [Client]

  1. 1. Innovation Games Focus Groups Briefing for [Client] Observers Prepared by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D. – January 2009
  2. 2. Feedback from Users Is •  Helpful to improving products •  Surprising in content •  Easy to collect •  Challenging to interpret •  Worth gathering at every stage of product development Prepared for [Client] by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D. 2
  3. 3. Traditional Focus Groups •  Moderator uses script to stimulate discussion •  Participants report their behavior and preferences –  We find out how they want to appear –  They influence one another –  Vocal participants stifle less assertive ones •  Ideas which are not in the script may be missed •  Observers sit behind mirrored glass with no direct contact with participants Prepared for [Client] by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D. 3
  4. 4. Design Games •  Games can shed light on issues such as –  What customers donʼt like about your product –  Customerʼs definitions and dimensions of success –  Time of day and context of use –  Priorities for features –  Important artifacts created using your product –  Hidden needs and essential functions Prepared for [Client] by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D. 4
  5. 5. Goals for the February 2 & 3 Design Games •  Present proposed features of a cellphone + web plan to support personal program for weight loss and increased physical activity –  Which combination of features is desired? –  Which are higher priority, which are less preferred? •  Invite participants to project themselves into a successful future and describe their steps to success (in an imagined progress through the program) –  Learn about their ideas of key milestones, barriers Prepared for [Client] by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D. 5
  6. 6. Participants •  All ages (20’s - 60’s), diverse professions, mix of men and women in all groups •  All have stated desire to lose weight and increase physical activity •  Two groups Spanish-speaking (probably bilingual, Mexican or Mexican-American); two group English- speaking (unknown other languages, cultures) Prepared for [Client] by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D. 6
  7. 7. February 2009 – 4 Sessions •  Monday, February 2 –  8:30 - 11:30 am (English Speakers) –  5:30 - 8:30 pm (Spanish Speakers) •  Tuesday, February 3 –  8:30 - 11:30 am (Spanish Speakers) –  5:30 - 8:30 pm (English Speakers) Prepared for [Client] by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D. 7
  8. 8. Agenda for a Session Prepared for [Client] by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D. 8
  9. 9. Game: Buy a Feature •  Divide group into 2 for •  Results expected each session –  Assess which features to build or –  Get more data about offer first; which to offer later or willingness to invest in not build features –  Understand multiple motivations •  Dollar amounts assigned for preferring the same feature to each feature –  Predict usage patterns for –  not directly tied what the product as contributed by cross- program will cost cultural, age, sex (and other •  Observe order of demographic) factors & purchase by whom individual behaviors –  Collaboration & reasoning Prepared for [Client] by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D. 9
  10. 10. Game: Remember the Future •  People work individually •  Results •  They contribute items –  [Client] understands more about changing habits of diet phrased in the “past tense” and exercise from the to describe participant’s perspective –  progress toward goal –  Participants begin to visualize –  specific difficulties in making success in steps rather than changes solely a start and an end point •  Items are placed on timeline –  Dimensions introduced in previous game are re-mixed by divided into monthly intervals participants “Tried a new fruit this week” •  Technology involvement •  Timing of prompts “Missed my treadmill •  Peer support appointment, but took a •  Professional guidance walk on the beach” •  Review at end of set time Prepared for [Client] by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D. 10
  11. 11. [Client] Staff and Friends as Observers •  In the room with participants •  No direct spoken interaction with participants* –  No corrections, clarifications, discussion •  Typically, one Observer plays role of “bad wedding photographer” with digital camera –  We are limited to photos that do not identify individuals –  We will document end results * Ice-breaker game “Human Treasure Hunt” is the exception Prepared for [Client] by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D. 11
  12. 12. Role of Observers •  Capture specific verbal and non-verbal behavior –  Quotes from participants –  Side remarks of participants –  Reactions to speakers –  Actions (including laughing, head-shaking, pointing, etc…) •  One observation per notecard –  You may need more than one notecard to record your observations about a single interaction –  Let each card stand by itself (completeness) Prepared for [Client] by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D. 12
  13. 13. Observers DO •  Identify who said what about which items Donna: “I hate vegetables” (in response to item urging her to try new foods) •  Record reactions by whom to what Ramon grunted and shook his head when Maria offered to buy “group exercise sessions” •  Refer questions to Nancy (and Tyler) and/or Sarah Prepared for [Client] by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D. 13
  14. 14. Observers DON’T •  Make interpretations The daily reminders should be thrown out because Group 3 hates them. •  Judge the participants Jaime obviously has unrealistic weight-loss goals, so why should we listen to him? •  Join the group to “help” or “fix something” or “just explain a little” •  Wander in and out of the room Prepared for [Client] by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D. 14
  15. 15. Expected outcomes •  Shared and deepened understanding of consumer engagement with digital technology (cell phone, text, web, photos) in service of self-reported goals •  Confirmation and surprises about beliefs, behavior, and values related to weight-loss and exercise •  Differences and similarities among men/women; English/Spanish speaker; age groups; occupations; etc. Prepared for [Client] by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D. 15
  16. 16. Debriefing •  Immediate (~30 min after each session) –  Quick impressions, review notecards, start to categorize, note points of agreement and disagreement (both for participants and observers) •  Soon thereafter (within the following week) –  Nancy will catalog all materials (cards, photos) and will prepare summary for [Client] review Prepared for [Client] by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D. 16
  17. 17. Questions? Your turn… Nancy Frishberg nancyf@fishbird.com Prepared for [Client] by Nancy Frishberg, Ph.D. 17

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