Crossing the divide between Marketing and UX by Simon Lester
Simon Lester, exHead of UX & Design @ FlexiGroup
The topics Simon covered in his workshop were:
What is UX?
UI vs UX
Why do we use UX?
6 principles behind UX
The UX design process
How Marketing Teams should work with UX teams?
What does a User Experience Team Structure look like?
It’s all about customer centricity.
1. What is User Experience (UX)?
The dictionary defines “UX” as “a person’s perception and response resulting from the use and/or anticipated use of a product system or service”. But UX is better defined as “the experience that needs to be provided to the end user via the user interface that enables and promotes the end user to do business with us as a business”.
Simon, however, went on to say a better definition would be: “it’s how an experience can be manipulated or influenced by the designer to increase the pleasure and interaction between product and user”— always making sure that visions and solutions need to be customer-centric.
2. UI vs UX (User Interface vs User Experience)
UI is a user interface focusing on how a product ‘looks’. UX is about the experience, design, and how the end user interacts with a product. As an example, Simon showed us a bottle of tomato sauce, saying that UI sees it one way, but then UX will see it another way.
3. Why do we use UX?
Business goals generally include:
Selling more product
Providing a better service
Making more money!
UX design goals include:
Understanding the goals and context-of-use of potential users or customers
Use that understanding to design a product, service, or app within business and technology constraints.
So, to align the goals of the user with the objectives of the business, the focus needs to be:
Practical: You need to solve a user’s need, a problem that users actually have
Usable: Usability needs to be clear so that users understand your product/service
Delightful: It’s not a bad thing if a user enjoys using your product
4. 6 principles behind UX Process
Whether working iteratively (agile) or in a more traditional milestone approach, there is always one goal: to provide the right content and tools to the right people at the right time. Aim to give each customer an experience that feels personal.
It is essential to understand the 6 principles behind UX, which are:
5. The UX design process
Simon advises that process is critical. Many believe that UX Design is confined to sketching the interfaces. However, UX Design is a much broader process that ideally starts at the strategy level and affects the whole lifecycle of a project or business. UX design has a crucial part in defining the business strategy, providing baselines for business decisions with such design deliverables as personas or user stories.
1. Know the pain points of your target audience
Designers must understand the needs of their users and the specific context in which they will be using the product. This includes defining the problem that the product needs to solve.
2. Create a prototype
Designers need to come up with potential solutions to that problem. This step often includes creating prototypes and testing them with users. Once a designer has a good understanding of the user’s needs and has developed some potential solutions, they can begin working on the actual design.
3. Focus on the actual design
This step includes developing a visual language and coming up with an overall layout for the product. Finally, once the design is complete, it is important to test it again with users to make sure that it is effective and easy to use.
Simon mentions that a UX-driven process does not necessarily end with UI, as it then goes on to testing with people, supporting the development, and making ongoing adjustments even after the initial launch.
6. How Marketing Teams should work with UX Teams?
Imagine Marketing teams working with UX teams as two sides of one coin.
The Marketing side aims to communicate the value of the same product or system so that user experience designers have to design for customers (not-yet users).
The User Experience side aims to ensure that users who interact with said product or systems can accomplish what they need to do, and do so with minimal frustration and decent levels of efficiency, for users.
Both Marketers and UX designers focus on the end user however the Marketer knows the end user as a customer, and UX designers know them as the user. The conflict occurs when marketers look to produce copy and creativity that suits their audience and by the time the creative makes it to the UX designer, the experience has to be built with constraints in place.
Communication And Collaboration With Design Team
The solution to all of the common conflicts Marketers and UX teams face is simple – collaboration! Do not divide the creative responsibilities and deliverables. While the division is still necessary within certain industries, it is less imperative in an industry where collaboration can not only ensure the task is met, but also that it is done more efficiently. Simon noted here that working together should not be mistaken for working collaboratively!
In terms of collaboration, if you sit in different locations, use technology to your advantage! Programs like Optimal Workshop will assist those teams working on separate floors or even separate buildings.
Leave your ego at the door – nobody can create and continue to develop an incredible product experience on their own.
Everyone can draw – pick up a pencil and get ideas out of your head onto media that can be viewed and discussed
Define the roles & Cross participation – it works both ways! Set primary and secondary responsibilities
Skills vs Roles – The definition of roles matters less than how a company operates. Pick the people who are best suited for the task at hand.
7. What does a User Experience (UX) Team Structure Look like?
Typically, a UX team structure may look a bit like this:
The Product/Marketing teams: The Marketing team presents data and business goals but also has UX concepts.
The UX team: They would bring creative and interactive design concepts. The UX team brought how this project fits into the overall experience for a user and the brand overall (since they also designed other parts of the product). They were also very open-minded to other ideas for UX designs from other teams.
The other teams: They would bring anecdotes about users. The other teams not only brought user anecdotes, but also some great UX insights, and inspiration from other products and apps they had used.
Founders/Business stakeholders: They would bring business goals. They will take care of the ROIs and growth of the company with this experience design.
The key to learning from this was that knowledge is shared, and communication and feedback can be framed around business contexts. Everyone is a valuable resource to the UX designer, and it speeds up the validation of concepts. The result is a better team and a better product!
8. It's all about customer-centricity!
Everyone is a part of the User Experience… so do what they do!
Empathise – understand why your customers behave the way they do.
Be curious – Have a genuine desire to know why people behave the way they do and dig deeper
Provide clarity – Express often complicated concepts clearly to those with little or no prior knowledge in the field – to make better decisions
Parity Plus is a value-add initiative designed by Parity Consulting to contribute to our client's and applicants' skills development and industry knowledge. We regularly partner with industry leaders and specialists to provide opportunities to engage with and learn from market leaders at the cutting edge of industry transformation.
If you enjoyed this session, please leave us a Google review!