UIE Article: Content Marketing Sustains the Conversation

Jared Spool

August 10th, 2016

This week, we reprint an article written by Ahava Leibtag that examines the importance of content marketing when competing for the audience’s attention.

Here’s an excerpt from the article:

Content marketing centers on the idea of having a conversation—the natural give and take that happens when people communicate. It is the difference between saying, “Buy a Toyota,” and “Hey, it looks like you are interested in buying a new mid-sized car—this particular model of Corolla might be perfect for you, but I’d like to hear more about what your car needs.” The first is forceful, the latter more of give and take, which gives the customer a chance to make up his mind based on the information you will provide.

Read the article: Content Marketing Sustains the Conversation

How do you use content marketing?  Tell us about it below.

UIE Article: A Design System isn’t a Project. It’s a Product, Serving Products.

Jared Spool

August 3rd, 2016

This week, we present an article written by Nathan Curtis encouraging designers and product managers to think of their design systems as the first step to delivering actual business value.

Here’s an excerpt from the article:

Focusing on style guide delivery as the climax is the wrong story to tell. A system isn’t a project with an end, it’s the origin story of a living and evolving product that’ll serve other products.

Thinking as a product changes perspective: it’s now not about us, it’s about serving our customers. How do we do that? Applying well-established approaches for product management and product marketing is a great start. Once recognized, a system team can adopt familiar and predictable tools and terminology to help them succeed.

Read the article: A Design System isn’t a Project. It’s a Product, Serving Products.

How important is design system management?  Tell us about it below.

UIE Article: What is Good Product Strategy?

Jared Spool

July 27th, 2016

This week, we present an article written by Melissa Perri on the topic of product strategy, and what you can do as a product manager to increase adoption.

Here’s an excerpt from the article:

Most companies fall into the trap of thinking about Product Strategy as a plan to build certain features and capabilities. We often say our Product Strategy are things like:

  • “To create a platform that allows music producers to upload and share their music.”
  • “To create a backend system that will allow the sales team to manage their leads.”
  • “To create a front of the funnel website that markets to our target users and converts them.”

This isn’t a strategy, this is a plan. The problem is that when we treat a product strategy like a plan, it will almost always fail. Plans do not account for uncertainty or change. They give us a false sense of security. “If we just follow the plan, we’ll succeed!” Unfortunately, there is no guarantee of success here. (I wish there was, our jobs would be SO much easier!)

Read the article: What is Good Product Strategy?

What is good product strategy in your mind? Tell us about it below.

UIE Article: Embracing the Medium

Jared Spool

July 21st, 2016

In this week’s article, we revisit the challenge of designing for web vs print.  Richard Rutter thinks we should embrace the fluidity of the medium.

Here’s an excerpt from the article

Where a print designer is all powerful, dictating every aspect of the reading experience, the web designer must know to relinquish control into the hands of the reader. In one of the most important writings on web design, John Allsop in A Dao of Web Design makes this point beautifully, using an extract from Tao Te Ching:

“The sage… accepts the ebb and flow of things, Nurtures them, but does not own them”

Read the article: Embracing the Medium

Have you made the transition from print to the web? Tell us about it below.

UIE Article: Pleasure, Flow, and Meaning – The 3 Approaches to Designing for Delight

Jared Spool

July 13th, 2016

In this week’s article, I revisit the three tenants of building delight into designs: pleasure, flow, and meaning.

Here’s an excerpt from the article

Your points expire two years after they are earned so be sure to spend all your points before then. After two years are up, the expiring points will automatically be removed from your balance by our Rewards Points Overlord (RPO). The RPO is extremely cranky and insists that once the points are gone, they are gone. Sorry for being so mean about it.

If you agree that design is the rendering of intent, it’s easy to see how the thoughtfully humorous copy at Moosejaw is intentionally designed. It’s a great example of how we, as designers, can integrate delight into what might be an otherwise plain experience.

Read the article: Pleasure, Flow, and Meaning – The 3 Approaches to Designing for Delight

Where have you put delight into your designs? Tell us about it below.

UIE Article: Service Design Thinking

Jared Spool

July 6th, 2016

This week, we present an article written by Marc Stickdorn on Service Design Thinking, and what it means to design physical products and services using the process.

Here’s an excerpt from the article

Service Design became more and more popular over the last years. Service Design refers to innovating both tangible products and services and is nowadays used, to connect people and technologies across multiple channels. The boundaries between physical products and services are blurring and mostly one doesn’t exist without the other anyway. We need to think in systems and understand the ecosystem in which services and physical products operate.

Read the article: Service Design Thinking

Have you engaged in Service Design Thinking? Tell us about it below.

Amy Jo Kim – Turbocharge Your Product Design with Game Thinking Live!

Sean Carmichael

July 6th, 2016

Play

[ Transcript Available ]

UX Immersion podcast

You’ve got a groundbreaking product idea, and you’ve assembled a crack team of designers. You know exactly what you want to do, but you’re unsure of how to do it. Without a framework to drive your product development, it’s game over.

Amy Jo will show you how a game designer approaches their product development and how they get to a design that their users love. From her research in how game designers think, you learn the value of refining and testing a simple, stripped down MVP (minimum viable product), long before you start adding all the fancy stuff.

To see the video of Amy Jo’s talk, visit the UX Immersion: Interactions section in our All You Can Learn Library.

Recorded: April, 2016
[ Subscribe to our podcast via Use iTunes to subscribe to UIE's RSS feed. ←This link will launch the iTunes application.]
[ Subscribe with other podcast applications.]

Read the rest of this entry »

Chris Risdon – Shaping Behavior, by Design Live!

Sean Carmichael

June 30th, 2016

Play

[ Transcript Available ]

UX Immersion podcast

Mobile, ambient technology, and connected devices are about mediating people’s behavior in their environments. Uncovering the whys and hows that drive behavior takes empathy, hours of observation, and masterful prototyping skills. You’ll succeed when you make, test, iterate, and learn.

Chris will explore the importance of engaging with users at the behavioral level. He’ll explain prototyping’s key role in closing the feedback loop on your designs. You’ll leave with an understanding of the best types of making and prototyping for observing and eliciting behaviors.

To see the video of Chris’s talk, visit the UX Immersion: Interactions section in our All You Can Learn Library.

Recorded: April, 2016
[ Subscribe to our podcast via Use iTunes to subscribe to UIE's RSS feed. ←This link will launch the iTunes application.]
[ Subscribe with other podcast applications.]

Read the rest of this entry »

UIE Article: Preparing Organizations to Become Design-Infused

Jared Spool

June 29th, 2016

In this week’s article, I recount what is takes to become a design-infused organization.

Here’s an excerpt from the article

Becoming a design-infused organization is the next level of maturity. These organizations realize that everything affects the users’ experience. If the technology is chosen poorly, the user will be frustrated by poor performance or limited capabilities. If the wrong functions are implemented, or too many are shoved into the design, the user will become frustrated by the complexity of completing their objectives. Everyone on the team needs to think about how they affect the experience.

A design-infused organization is one where every decision is made with design at the forefront. When choices are available to the team, they’ll all choose the one that provides the best experience.

Read the article: Preparing Organizations to Become Design-Infused

Made the transition to a design-infused organization? Tell us about it below.

UIE Article: Design’s Fully-Baked Deliverables and Half-Baked Artifacts

Jared Spool

June 22nd, 2016

In this week’s article, I revisit the topic of artifacts and deliverables within the design process.

Here’s an excerpt from the article

Deliverables are how we tell the story of what the design will be. Of course, the classic deliverable is the finished product itself. Nothing tells the story of the design better than the product.

In the days of old, the finished product was the only deliverable. There were no plans or blueprints, just what the craftsman completed.

Collaboration across the organization changed all that. Others needed to know our intention—what we wanted the design to be. Thus, intermediate deliverables were born.

Read the article: Design’s Fully-Baked Deliverables and Half-Baked Artifacts

How have deliverables changed since you started designing? Tell us about it below.