How to avoid sinking significant time and money into a white elephant!
Instead of feeling investing in a product that had no future our client found a new, better opportunity.
The information in this case study is based on an ongoing project but we wanted to share an interesting story.
Starting a tech company when you are not in the industry is confusing, complex and expensive. It requires investment of time and money that is not available by most in the early stages.
We were approached by Nick and Adrian who had an idea. In their role in the film industry they had identified a gap that could be resolved with the right tool, but they didn't know where to start.
Getting a good idea off the ground with limited resources requires very focused activity.
To make their idea a reality they needed to ensure both their idea had merit and was commercially viable before they sought investment and committing their resources to building a business.
As the project was in a self funded stage we ensured that every activity was highly focused on creating value and pushing towards their goal.
There are two key steps we went through to ensure that we could validate their vision:
We held a series of remote workshops to build our shared understanding of the market. This gave us a foundation from which we could define what a successful product could look like.
Outputs, such as user journeys, allowed us to quickly share the knowledge of the current user experience.
If it wasn't for the current COVID-19 restrictions we would have undertaken user observations to see our target customers in their environment. Instead we did two forms of insight gathering to validate our assumptions and add further details:
Firstly, we conducted 1 hour Zoom user interviews to probe people who represented our target users.
Next, we recruited users to record a diary. This mixed format process gave us daily insight into a users experience through words, pictures, video and other artefacts collected through the day. It created a richness of experience that an interview cannot achieve.
From this new research we drew key patterns and insights.
The user research we undertook uncovered some really intriguing insights.
Undoubtedly there was dissatisfaction in the industry with the current solutions. However, it wasn't translating into such an acute pain that there was a reliable basis for a business.
What we did find though was a new opportunity for a product. One that retained the essence of the original vision but achieved with a different product.
User's clearly signalled our new opportunity by consistently describing the pain point using a choice selection of four letter words!
This new product has many strengths over plan A:
Next steps are to build our understanding of this new innovate solution through user research, technical discovery, design and development.
This was a particularly satisfying result for us because we were able to save Nick and Adrian from spending their hard fought time and money on a product that may never have got anywhere. instead we are pursuing a product with proven promise and an exciting future from just a small early investment.
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