NBC Universal International

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The challenge:

Create an easy to use and learn application for producers and content creators to enter and manage metadata and distribution data and details. To turn a tedious, once-a-month process into something simple and easy. To give time back to hard working producers so they can focus on their primary tasks and goals. Work with the product development team to help them see how to incorporate UX and design thinking into their process.

The Goals:

Make it CONTEXTUAL

Users have noted that it’s easy to “get lost” when entering data because of the nested pop-ups/overlays. The relationships between Series/Seasons/Episodes can be highlighted using layout and design.

TASK BASED interactions

Currently the user begins each interaction with a search. They must decide what they want to do and how to proceed. Providing task based triggers can help guide users complete common tasks.

GUIDE users

Many tasks are multi-stepped, but there are no wizard or stepped patterns in the current interface. Stepped interactions help guide users through tasks.

Make it MINIMALIST

It is very easy to be overwhelmed by the layers of information in the current interface. Minimizing interface elements and simplifying content display will help users feel less overwhelmed and overloaded.

The Process:

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Frame

Conducted interviews with stakeholders, developers and project management

Performed heuristic analysis of NBCU’s existing application interface

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Empathize

Conducted interviews with producers and support users

Identified key user types and personas

Identified user goals and needs

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Define

Identified use cases

Identified primary UX patterns

Identified template types

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Ideate and Prototype

Created screen flow diagrams

Created wireframes of key user flows

Created a series of prototypes

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Test

Tested with delivery team and producers

Revised and iterated design based on results

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Deliver

Delivered final page designs

Delivered a set of short term recommendations

Recommended design frameworks and plugins

Outcomes:

NBC Universal is currently exploring a full redesign of the application based on the prototyped screens to be completed in 2019.

RIT

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The challenge:

Create a new holistic RIT website experience that reflects RIT’s vision, values, and core messages.

The Goals:

  • Create a distinctive and consistent design that is a flexible design system for external communication

  • Provide multiple pathways to relevant offerings

  • Improve discoverability through clear content hierarchy

  • Support various modes of navigation (surgical, casual, and assisted)

  • Optimize UX for multiple platforms

  • Gather data to continue improving relationships with target audiences (parents, students, alumni, partners and employers, etc.)

  • Improve SEO and support ADA compliance

The Process:

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Frame

Conducted interviews with deans, professors, and administrators

Performed heuristic analysis of RIT’s many sites, content, and marketing materials

Performed a competitive/comparative analysis

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Empathize

Conducted interviews with alumni, current students, parents, and prospective students

Identified key user types and personas

Identified user goals and needs

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Define

Identified RIT differentiation story

Explored story telling strategies

Defined a story telling platform

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Ideate

Created concept sketches

Explored alternative browsing options such as by passion, interest, and role

Explored new story telling formats such as incorporating Instagram video profiles

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Prototype

Created sitemap

Created wireframes of key user flows

Created an Invision prototype

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Test

Tested with current undergrad and graduate students and administrators

Revised and iterated design based on results

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Deliver

Delivered final page designs and style guide

Created motion studies for transitions and micro interactions

Created content guidelines

Helped create a change management/content transition plan

Outcomes:

RIT is currently rolling out the new website design in phases during 2019.

Ellucian

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The challenge:

Transform the Ellucian digital experience from a product-focused to a customer-focused narrative, providing relevant content to target audiences to drive engagement and conversion.

The Goals:

  • Improve brand awareness

  • Increase awareness for new products

  • Increase audience engagement

  • Increase media inquiries

  • Increase traffic

  • Demonstrate market leadership

  • Generate new marketing qualified leads for the global market

  • Increase number of sales demos

  • Increase number of new strategic and alliance partnerships

The Process:

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Frame

Conducted interviews with stakeholders

Performed heuristic analysis of the current site, content, and marketing materials

Performed a competitive/comparative analysis

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Empathize

Conducted interviews with customers

Identified user types and personas

Identified user stories

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Define

Identified user touch points

Explored their decisions making process

Defined a service design strategy

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Ideate

Created concept sketches

Explored alternative product discovery options

Explored the psychology or relationships

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Prototype

Created sitemap

Created wireframes of key user flows

Created an Invision prototype

Test

Tested with stakeholders and customer experts

Revised and iterated design

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Deliver

Delivered final page designs and style guide

Created content guidelines

Defined a branded messaging strategy

Outcomes:

Elucian.com launched its new website design in 2019. The new product categorization and additional navigational options have made it easier for potential customers to explore Ellucian’s offerings. The new story telling approach has enabled cross-linking and helped Ellucian clearly communicate it’s holistic offerings and approach.

CHEP

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The challenge:

Create an easy to use AI pricing tool for the CHEP sales force to replace existing analog processes, increase responsiveness, and improve customer satisfaction.

The Goals:

  • Standardize pricing across multiple regions in EMEA

  • Increase efficiency

  • Increase adoption

  • Enable data-based insights

  • Decrease time to sale

The Process:

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Frame

Met with client stakeholders to identify goals

Identified success metrics

Defined requirements for MVP

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Empathize

Spent a week embedded in the CHEP offices

Observed existing sales and pricing process

Identified user goals and needs

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Define

Identified key use cases

Identified key interface types

Created screen flow diagrams

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Ideate

Created low fidelity prototypes to explore different interaction models

Held multiple cross-disciplinary brainstorming and white boarding sessions

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Prototype

Created multiple prototypes to explore micro interactions

Created Invision prototype to test proposed workflow

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Test

Tested interaction models with sales team

Revised and iterated design based on results

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Deliver

Delivered revised prototype

Created style guide for design and micro interactions

Delivered annotated screen flow diagrams

Outcomes:

CHEP’s technology partner RAGE utilized the prototype and annotated flow diagrams to build the new pricing tool. It has been rolled out across EMEA and is currently being considered for the Americas.

S&P Global Ratings

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The challenge:

Establish a clear vision for an ideal future state, client-centric experience for S&P Global Ratings — one which is disruptive, transformational, and surpasses and differentiates S&P Global Ratings from competitors.

The Goals:

  • Reposition the product offering beyond BAU

  • Re-examine the larger contexts of the client experience as a starting point for rethinking

  • Provide a new lens by which to view S&P Global Ratings products and offerings

  • Create a new user experience paradigm that speaks more appropriately to end-user needs

The Process:

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Frame

Conducted interviews with stakeholders

Performed heuristic analysis of the current site and content

Performed a competitive/comparative analysis

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Empathize

Conducted interviews with customers

Identified user types and personas

Identified user goals and needs

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Define

Identified all user touch points

Explored the connections between different offerings

Defined a service design strategy

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Ideate

Created concept sketches

Explored alternative content hierarchies and prioritization

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Prototype

Created sitemap

Created wireframes of key user flows

Created an Invision prototype

Created tablet, mobile, and smart watch prototypes

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Test

Tested with stakeholders and user representatives

Revised and iterated design based on results of testing

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Deliver

Delivered revised prototypes

Delivered digital styleguide

Delivered print styleguide

Outcomes:

The final prototype was presented to Standards & Poor’s management and is currently being used the vision for future iterations of S&P’s ratings.

Deloitte Thoughtware

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The challenge:

Design a web based transformational platform that provides analysis that delivers company-specific insights actionable for client relationship building and lead generation.

The Goals:

  • Sensing portals serve two main use cases that enable practitioners to stay ahead of their clients:

    • Deep dive into topics related to your client or sector

    • Stay smart on your client or sector

  • To align with Market Development and the Deloitte 2020 strategy—easy access to client information.

The Process:

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Frame

Rapid project kick off included accelerated interviews with project stakeholders

Analyzed existing workflows and platform

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Empathize

Conducted rapid interviews with auditors and audit clients

Identified key user interactions

Prioritized content needs

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Define & Ideate

Created project definitions through the creation of rapid prototypes which were presented to the audit team

Quickly iterated based on feedback in co-design sessions

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Prototype

Created application map

Created wireframes of key user flows for web and mobile based interactions

Created an Invision prototype

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Test

Ad hoc testing with auditors and customer representatives

Revised and iterated design based on results

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Deliver

Delivered annotated prototypes

AB Insights

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The challenge:

Develop a Global Content Platform that aggregates AB insights within a simple organization

Strategically present insights that connect to AB products

Deliver useful, relevant and regionalized Thought Leadership

Enhance metrics and marketing intelligence to build better customer/prospect profiles for AB sales teams

The Goals:

  • Increase the number of site visitors

  • Increase visitor time on the site

  • Increase brand awareness

  • Increase sales

The Process:

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Frame

Conducted interviews with stakeholders

Performed heuristic analysis of the current site and insights content

Performed a competitive/comparative analysis

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Empathize

Conducted interviews with customers

Identified user types and personas

Identified user stories and relationships

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Define

Identified an optimal user journey

Explored ways that users navigate content

Explored the ways user learn about funds

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Ideate

Created concept sketches

Identified online reading, saving, and sharing best practices

Explored how users utilized insights

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Prototype

Identified key scenarios

Created journey flows

Created wireframes of key journeys

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Test

Tested concepts with stakeholders and customer experts

Revised and iterated design

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Deliver

Delivered final page designs and style guide

Created content guidelines

Outcomes:

AB launched its new insights design in 2018. The new insights section have made it easier for potential customers to explore AB’s funds. AB’s insights are now easier to read, save, and share.

Deloitte Audit Journey

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The challenge:

Design a web based transformational platform for all audit stakeholders to help centralize and streamline interactions and the audit execution workflow

The Goals:

  • Increased efficiency in communication and tracking of routine audit requests of client personnel

  • Automate standard tasks such as document generation

  • Improve audit efficiency and profitability

  • Reduce duplicative work and potential for error while creating standardized audit processes

  • Differentiate Deloitte Audit Practice by demonstrating efficient audit processes and innovative use of technology

  • Showcase thoughtware from Deloitte Audit Practice

The Process:

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Frame

Rapid project kick off included accelerated interviews with project stakeholders

Analyzed existing workflows and tools

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Empathize

Conducted rapid interviews with auditors and audit clients

Identified key user interactions

Prioritized content needs

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Define & Ideate

Created project definitions through the creation of rapid prototypes which were presented to the audit team

Quickly iterated based on feedback in co-design sessions

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Prototype

Created application map

Created wireframes of key user flows

Created an Invision prototype

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Test

Ad hoc testing with auditors and customer representatives

Revised and iterated design based on results

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Deliver

Delivered annotated prototypes

Amalgamated Bank

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The challenge:

Improve brand awareness for Amalgamated as a bank that is part of the progressive community

Reposition core offerings to highlight expertise in key Commercial Banking segments

Focused on impact banking with products and services tailored to meet specific customer needs

The Goals:

  • Increase the number of site visitors

  • Increase inquiries for products and services

  • Increase the number of business and consumer accounts

  • Prioritize B2B products and services

  • Increase prominence of Lending and Investment Management

  • Present relevant information tailored to the audience

  • Promote smart thought leadership perspectives

  • Highlight case studies and amplify client news/stories

  • Showcase Impact reports

  • Identify of top prospects across segments

  • Integrate and target digital programs to reach audience

The Process:

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Frame

Conducted interviews with stakeholders

Performed heuristic analysis of the current site, content, and marketing materials

Performed a competitive/comparative analysis

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Empathize

Conducted interviews with customer experts

Identified user types and personas

Identified user stories

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Define & Ideate

Identified user touch points

Explored their decisions making process

Defined a content taxonomy

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Prototype

Created sitemap

Created wireframes of key user flows

Created an Invision prototype

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Test

Tested with stakeholders and customer experts

Revised and iterated design

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Deliver

Delivered final page designs and style guide

Created content guidelines

Defined a branded messaging strategy

Outcomes:

AmalgamatedBank.com launched its new website design in 2018, highlighting the bank’s new cause-focused approach to marketing. The bank released an impact report showcasing all that it has done in support of social responsibility. This year that bank will go public.

CreditExpress

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The challenge:

To provide a CRM tool to ISOs that will empower them to facilitate and close more small business loans than ever before. To meet this goal we will design a tool that focuses on trust, transparency, compliance, simplicity and new levels of connectivity with Merchant Borrowers, ISOs and Funders.

The Goals:

  • Support Workflow / Team Management

  • Track activities

  • Make process transparent

  • Streamline Interactions / Transactions

  • Generate simple reports

  • Provide a single repository for all documentation

  • Be a digital assistant for users so they can stream line their work and make better decisions

The Process:

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Frame

Conducted interviews with stakeholders

Performed a competitive/comparative analysis

Documented current ISO small business process

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Empathize

Conducted interviews with prospective customers

Identified user types and personas

Identified user goals and needs

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Define

Identified user touch points

Explored user decisions making process

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Ideate

Created concept sketches

Explored best practices for key interactions such as stepped flows

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Prototype

Created sitemap

Created wireframes of key user flows

Created an Invision prototype

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Test

Tested with stakeholders and customer experts

Revised and iterated design

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Deliver

Delivered final page designs and style guide

Created logo and brand guidelines

Red Hat Partner Center

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The challenge:

To create a customer-centric online partner center that because a valuable tool and resource for Red Hat technology and sales partners.

The Goals:

  • More revenue

  • New Customers

  • To move to “line of business”

The Process:

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Frame

Conducted interviews with stakeholders

Performed heuristic analysis of the existing site, content, and marketing materials

Performed a competitive/comparative analysis

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Empathize

Conducted interviews with partner representatives

Identified partner types and personas

Identified partner stories and goals

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Define

Identified user touch points

Explored their decisions making process

Defined a service design strategy

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Ideate

Created concept sketches

Explored alternative experiences

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Prototype

Created app map

Created wireframes of key user flows

Created low fidelity prototypes

Created Invision prototypes

Test

Tested with stakeholders and partner experts

Revised and iterated design based on feedback

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Deliver

Delivered final page designs and style guide

Created content guidelines

Defined a branded messaging strategy

Red Hat

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The challenge:

“Redhat.com becomes the best example of what our brand stands for.”

The Goals:

  • Simplify and amplify brand and technology vision

  • Increase revenue

  • Build a global community

  • Shape our global positioning

  • Empower our teams

The Process:

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Frame

Conducted interviews with stakeholders

Performed heuristic analysis of the existing site, content, and marketing materials

Performed a competitive/comparative analysis

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Empathize

Conducted interviews with customers

Identified user types and personas

Identified user stories

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Define

Identified user touch points

Explored their decisions making process

Defined a service design strategy

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Ideate

Created concept sketches

Explored alternative product discovery options

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Prototype

Created sitemap

Created wireframes of key user flows

Created low fidelity prototypes

Test

Tested with stakeholders and customer experts

Revised and iterated design

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Deliver

Delivered final page designs and style guide

Created content guidelines

Defined a branded messaging strategy

Outcomes:

RedHat.com launched its new website design in 2014. The new website helped RedHat define the story of its products, its value, and its beliefs. The company was acquired by IBM in 2018.

How do you tell the story of what you do when what you do is invisible?
How do you communicate the complex value of your offering simply?
How do you go from a $1 billion dollar company to being acquired for $34 billion?

The joy of being "competent"

This is a from a recent review of The Ghost Club: Spirits Never Die, a film I co-wrote, and acted in:

The Ghost Club: Spirits Never Die is above all a fun horror movie that might not have anything terribly new to offer, but it tells its story well, with its tongue firmly in cheek and never shying away from a bit of camp to go along with the scares while still delivering when it comes to shocks and suspense. And of course, a great location (an "actual" haunted mansion) and a competent ensemble playing well off one another certainly help bringing the story across.
A fun ride, really!

Aside from the fact that I think this review nails it--I think we did do a fun, funny send up of reality ghost hunting, with some nice little scares folded in--I'd like to declare that I'm proud of being part of a competent ensemble.

I'm not sure I would have always been proud of being called "competent", what with the desire to stand out, be important, make, and do things that blow people's minds. In other words to be special. With the subsequent desire to get some kind of validation, and acknowledgement that, yes, I am indeed special, because how else would you ever know you're truly special unless someone tells you that you are?  

But, you know what? I have had people tell me I'm special, smart, genius even, and aside from the fact that I never ever believe them, or worse, wonder what they're trying to get from me through their flattery, being thought of special kinda sucks. Why? Because suddenly I'm thinking more about being special, than I am about the things that I'm creating.

I'm worrying more about if I'm really shredding out those blistering 20,000 notes on the guitar, or showing my musical mastery by playing some obscure chord shape than I am about the song that I'm playing. Yet one of my biggest musical heroes is Bill Withers, one of the greatest song writers of all time, and most of his tunes barely have 3 chords in them. 

Or I'm so caught up in the judgement that what I'm writing may not be special enough that I don't actually finish it. And yet if I were to list out my favorite films, a huge percentage of them were just made at the whim of someone who had a crazy idea, and then, before they could talk themselves out of it, dove in, and made the damn film, and usually crazily fast at that. Alien. It Follows. Dazed And Confused. Etc. 

So instead of being special, I'm recommitting myself to making stuff--films, books, music, apps--but instead of trying to stand out, I'm going to do my best to be competent, and to have fun, and to shift my focus on the thing, and the process of making it, and the people I'm making it with, than on my ego-centric desire for praise, or validation. 

Why? Because I think that'll make it easier to have a fun ride, really! 

On Social & Viral Marketing

I was recently asked about using social marketing to make branded content more discoverable, and how to use social to foster a deeper level of engagement with a brand. They asked for examples. Here's my off-the-cuff answer with some hemming and hawing of course--what consultant doesn't like to hem and haw?

Can a Brand Go Viral?

This is still kinda a tough one. Despite what you've read everywhere on the web social is still an emerging space, and brands are still trying to figure out how to make it work for them. I think the most effective current strategies are to emulate the things that work for individuals who are creating their own personal brands through their engagement with social. AKA, find someone who is doing something really interesting, and successful, and copy it. One example of this: I have recently seen a campaign in my Tumblr feed by Holiday Inn, which seems to be copying Humans of New York:

holidayInn
Humans

Humans shows up in people's feeds because it gets shared, and because they like the page, and then you read them because we love to read about each other, we love each other's stories, we love to see all the ways we're connected. Holiday Inn shows up in people's feeds because they pay to be there. But they're trying to associate their brand with the human story angle, with a dash of upworthy 'we're all in this together', and hope that association sticks. The trouble with this for me is that Humans comes out of one person's passion, and his singular focus doing what he loves to do, whereas the Holiday Inn campaign is obviously cooked up by an ad agency. It doesn't feel honest, because it's trying to sell that you should stay at Holiday Inn by telling these human stories. To me the various Dove campaigns--The Real Beauty Campaign including the Real Beauty Sketches web videos--are still the absolute best when it comes to this kind of thing, because they aren't selling Dove at all. They are asking questions about beauty that women are currently trying to come to terms with--body image, age, etc. That said, there are still tons of critics out there who have all kinds of negative things to say about the campaign. In a post Marshall McLuhan world we just have a hard time trusting big brands to be the keepers of these difficult conversations, or to be the representatives of these values.

How About Mini-Viral?

I think the current challenge with social is that we don't tend to think of it in a targeted way--going viral is the antithesis of targeting after all--but I think there could be another approach, which is to think of mini-communities that you can offer actual value to, and attempt to go viral within that mini-community. Mini-viral? It's not sexy, but one of the things I learned working on a recent project for a company specializing in workplace law is that they are constantly writing very specific blog posts, and articles about changes in workplace law in the different states, and concerning different topics, and then basically giving all that great insight, and information away for free on their blogs, and newsletters. And then of course posting all that to LinkedIn, and Twitter. A series of user interviews led me to understand how much HR professionals, and corporate lawyers eat that stuff up. It's apparently tricky to keep abreast of all the changes in law that affect the workplace--e-cigarettes being one of the things that's changing all over the country right now--and rather than have to read law journals, and court decisions, etc. these lawyers, and HR folks just want someone smart to sum it all up, and tell them how these changes affect them, and the companies they work for. They subscribe to the feeds, and newsletters of the firm I was working for, and then do a morning read of all the new articles that apply to them. They create a relationship with the firm through these articles, and then, when the firm wants to do something a bit more marketing focused--like promote a new event, or conference--that goes in the feed too. The users are more likely to be interested in these events because they already have a relationship with the company, and might even feel a connection to one of the firm's representatives who will attend the event because that person may have authored one of the articles they've read, and found useful. And, of course, the firm continues to showcase their expertise in all aspects of workplace law through these articles, which is marketing in its own right. They are constantly communicating their expertise. I think for a big brand wanting to increase discoverability and engagement the idea would be to offer some kind of actual value to users, like the firm I worked for does. Provide information that that audience can actually use. Identify specific user segments, identify their very real desires (what they aren't getting right now content wise), and then figure out how the brand can provide that information. De-emphasize marketing, make information and analysis the most important thing, and then get these user segments to subscribe to their specific feed, and then, and only then, market events etc. to them sparingly. I think the only other option is to do something like Holliday Inn--figure out the emotional and aspirational messages that the brand is aligned with, and then figure out a fun way to reinforce that alignment through some kind of clever social campaign, like the way YouTube is currently marketing itself as the voice of young women: http://www.tubefilter.com/2014/04/08/youtube-nyc-subway-ads-michelle-phan-bethany-mota-rosanna-pansino/ Or the Dove beauty campaign perhaps. But that's not something that's easy to pull off. To me, the key is always:

  • Figure out who your audience is
  • Try to understand what they want
  • Figure out the simplest, easiest, lowest cost way to give it to them
  • Determine the ways that giving it to them helps meet business goals
  • And then line 'em up

How do we incorporate mistakes into the design process?

Come to Amsterdam and help me define a Mistake Manifesto.

F*CK UP DESIGN

Wednesday 09:30 HKU Hilversum Morning workshop by Jason Nunes

If good design requires failure, how can designers f*ck up when failure isn’t considered an option?

Edison famously said, "I failed my way to success." In the interactive world, we've all heard the buzz phrases about failing fast, and how failure--particularly in the form of prototyping--can be a powerful design tool. But what about real failure? We've all experienced projects that never got off the ground, or crashed and burned stunningly. We don't put them in our portfolios. We only talk about them when we've had one drink too many. What can we learn from our embarrassments? And are there really things we can learn by failing, especially in the agency and consulting worlds, where we are hired for our expertise, and infallibility?

Questions to think about:

Can there be actual power, and knowledge in failure? What is your biggest failure, and what did you learn from it?

What are the different ways you can fail? Have you ever had a "successful" project that was a personal failure? Why? What can you learn from it?

Why are we so afraid of failing? What are the negative consequences of failure? And how can we encourage a positive viewpoint on failure?

How can we pull victory from the flames of defeat? How do you not panic when you sense yourself failing? How can you use your failure to inform future successes?

How can we build an acceptance of failure into a design or consulting practice? How can we get away from always having to be right, and move towards creative adaptability?

Vote for F*CK UP Innovation on the SXSW panel picker

I just submitted another interactive panel for 2014 SXSW called F*CK UP Innovation.

Edison famously said, "I failed my way to success." In the interactive world, we've all heard the buzz phrases about failing fast, and how failure--particularly in the form of prototyping--can be a powerful design tool. But what about real failure? We've all experienced projects that never got off the ground, or crashed and burned stunningly. We don't put them in our portfolios. We only talk about them when we've had one drink too many. What can we learn from our embarrassments? And are there really things we can learn by failing, especially in the agency and consulting worlds, where we are hired for our expertise, and infallibility? - See more at: http://panelpicker.sxsw.com/vote/19144#sthash.imS0icVU.dpuf

If you like the idea, please vote for it. Thanks!

I was just invited to write another book...

by the Interaction Design Foundation.

In their words:

You have been nominated by several of our readers to publish with us. One of the reasons given for your nomination is:

'Jason Nunes is the co-author of a very inspiring introduction to user centered design'

Like our other authors, you get lots of writing invitations. However, this one is different: We are the first and only Open Access publisher of top-quality books in the world. We offer complete, unrestricted and free access to our books in online version.

Thanks, guys! I'm flattered, and I'm tempted. I like what the organization stands for, and they seem to have published some really interesting ID books from some smart people.

Only problem is, I have no idea what to write.

What do you guys thinks? Are there any UX/ID topics that you find fascinating that you'd like to see a book written about? Product strategy from an ID perspective? ID and physical computing? Something about storytelling across multi-platforms (which I'm loathe to call transmedia)? Branding from an ID perspective?

What do you think?