Yes, an actual book. Spine. Cover. Pages. Ok, it’s a draft in the photo, but …Somebody pinch me!
USERPALOOZA is a how-to for planning and conducting field research – to connect with customers in their context – to understand how they think and behave around your product, service or category.
…Because it’s easier to design for a customer you understand.
It started two years ago, when I wrote this sticky note and slapped it on my monitor:
This sticky note travelled with me during fieldwork. I couldn’t escape it’s call to arms. It won a two year battle of wills.
The sticky note soon became a companion, a travelling and motivating call to action as I squeezed writing time into my working days.
‘Isn’t that shooting yourself in the foot?’
‘Won’t people buy the book instead of hiring you?’
On the edge of NYC in a sleeting-cold January storm, two colleagues and I arrived at a home visit with instructions to ‘go round back’.
Without going into detail, ‘round back’ did not look like a safe place to visit, and we made the joint call to bail out.
This was the first time I’ve abandoned a user research session, and I was so pleased not to be alone. In fact, had I been alone, I’m fairly sure I would have gone ahead out of duty to the client and the project, brushing off any safety concerns, despite what my instinct was telling me.