“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.” – Bill Gates, Microsoft
Product design, good product design at least, isn’t necessarily what you think would make good features on the product. Rather it is about solving your user’s problems in the most efficient manner for them. Very few users fall into what you’d call the ‘prototype user’ archetype, who’s excited to test out new features regardless of what they may be.
But your average users want something useful that’s going to have a positive impact on their lives, or at least on the usage of your product. That’s why good product design is dedicated to making the user better and not just the product itself.
We can see this in advertising, where products are dedicated to showing how they improve users’ lives. From Apple’s “1000 songs in your pocket” to the new Apple watch ads. They’re all dedicated to showing you what the product does for you or how it makes you better as a person.
However, sometimes, like a child who doesn’t want to eat their vegetables, users reject features that are likely to improve their experiences. For example, when Facebook introduced newsfeed they initially received an enormous amount of backlash. With various groups petitioning for the removal of the feature. Now could you imagine a world where you’d have to go to each of your friends’ individual profiles to see any new updates, it sounds downright absurd.
|Even more recently when Twitter announced they were increasing their tweet limit from 140 characters to 280 characters, they also received initial negative feedback from users. But now both of these features are accepted and most users would probably say that they’ve improved their experience on both products. So, this then raises the question, when shouldn’t you listen to your users? One thing to remember often is that there are a silent majority and a very loud minority, so unless you’re soliciting feedback from a very large sample size of users, a lot of the noise you hear isn’t necessarily going to represent the entire user base. It’s also important to analyze what your customers do, not what they say. Users can often be resistant to change, especially if the change may seem to make a dramatic change to their general experience. But often their behavior doesn’t reflect this, and they end up coming to terms with the changes that have been made.|
The key thing is to always hear what your customers have to say, but not necessarily listen to what they say. It is important to recognize both our, and our customer’s shortcomings when it comes to accurately predict the future. So, it’s necessary to carry out a thorough analysis of how to validate features and your business – which we’ve talked about in an older blog post (see here). Once you do this, you can feel confident enough to weather and navigate the storm of initial naysayers who want you to reverse any changes to your product you’re making, and make a positive impact on your users’ lives.
That’s all folks! Now, let’s dive into the other parts of Series V.
Have you read the latest edition of Founder Diaries? We talked to the founders of Verto Fx. Read here.
VP Partner, Kayode Oyewole and Odun Eweniyi of PiggyVest were on a panel at the just concluded Social Media Week Lagos 2020 discussing wealth creation in this digital age. Watch here.
New Year, New Trove. Trove Finance got a facelift with a new logo, fresh UI and a bunch of new features on the mobile app. Update your Trove app to enjoy all the awesomeness. See the announcement here. Get the app on Google play or you can download it on the App Store.
Have you met the SaltBox team? See here.
Congratulations to VP portfolio company ThankUCash (Connected Analytics) on getting into 500 Startups Batch 26! Read the TechCrunch article here.
Did you read the piece by TechPoint on how we determine the companies we back, our highs and lows? Read here.
An update on Ventures Platforms’ partnership with USAID on the E-Wash project. This project is being implemented in three states: Imo, Abia, and Sokoto states. We are happy to announce that 53 CSOs have been on-boarded in Imo and Sokoto States. Read the post here.
We have officially launched the AgriLab ideation and incubation program! The opening event unveiled the 15 AgriTech startups selected to take part in the 3-day workshop. The event was graced by Hon. Muntari Dandutse & reps from The Embassy of Ireland, ECOWAS and Thrive Agric. Five startups, ePoultry, AgroLinka, The Farm People, Farmporte and Cultiventure, emerged victoriously and would proceed to the program to stand a chance to win $2,000 each and a trip to Ireland. Read the tweet announcement here.
Applications are still open. Make a difference in the Abuja startup ecosystem – join the Mentor-Driven Capital program and become a mentor! The application closes on 5th March 2020. Apply here.
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Are you building a market-creating innovation? We would like to know more. Apply here.
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See you next month,