“Homer, I want you to design the average car for the average American”
If you are a fan of the Simpsons, you should know this episode.
This is a clear example of a full-blown fail.
In the ideal of companies this is a wonderful co-creation, where the client participates in the generation and co-creation of the value proposition indicating what he would like, what he needs, specifying his motivations, etc.
Well, as shown at the end, many co-creations that start off on the right foot in the end are useless, they can even ruin your idea.
The most important lesson to take is that, in these dynamics, “the user should help you with your idea, not create it for yourself.”
¿Why do co-creations fail?
This cartoon is not so far from what really happens in companies, basically for three reasons:
- We believe that the client knows what he wants; Which is not true. What he knows is what he does NOT want. How are you going to surprise your user if he tells you what you have to do?
- Co-creations are not focus / interviews. They are the moment in which we show the user our idea or concept, preferably a low-level prototype so that they can think with us; a base from which to start building and we can get real feedback to redefine our value proposition.
- For co-creations you have to carry a low-level prototype, which is ugly, so the user does not feel bad if the idea destroys you. But if your idea is in a super worked Mockup he will like it and that feedback is not real.
¿How do we structure a co-creation session to get the most out of it?
In the co-creations you are raising the cards. This is when you show what you have to your user and you must have a pure mind ‘like a Zen master’ so that your ego does not appear when your user does not understand what you have shown him and wants to build on top of it.
In a way, these dynamics are the closest thing to psychology sessions, but using your concepts as an element of expression. Why. through your idea or prototype, they begin to tell you what is wrong with their life.
If your idea gives them something, they will start building with you.
And that is the most magical moment that a company can have. You are doing something good for your client. This is when the prototype gets its value: how to show an idea that does not exist? How to show something intangible? Can you talk to the user about something abstract? Or should you show him something tangible?
To explain how to structure a session, we are going to talk about 4 key moments that you must take into account, if you do, you have a good chance of getting the most out of the session:
- Moment 1 “Show and validate the problem”
In the beginning of the session it is important to validate the problems before starting to talk about the concepts. This will help you understand if what you are going to tell them is interesting or not.
- Moment 2 “Show the idea”
Present ideas and comment on what they like and don’t like about the idea. The important thing here is not to sell, but to understand what they think of the idea. Positive and negative aspects, what he did not understand the idea or that it occurs to him based on what you tell him.
Just talk about these aspects. Keep heating up to fill in the feedback matrix.
- Moment 3 “Understand the Why of their answers”
Fill in the feedback matrix, let each participant post their posts and try to remove the repeated ones. About what they write, try to make them think aloud and express the reason for their response. If you are astute with an answer you can go deeper with the 5 whys to get to the root of the answer.
Verbalize what they have in mind and that can resolve doubts about the ideas.
- Moment 4 “Transform your idea into the reality of the client”
Ask them to build on your idea or tell you how they would make your concept more useful to better solve the problem you have detected. Here it is good to ask them if they know existing solutions and how they use them or why they do not use them.
Build on your main idea to create upgrade versions.
The next time you want to do a co-creation follow these three rules:
- See what hurts your user in his life. Something that you see useful or improvable in their personal history.
- Show him your idea and let him build on it.
- Reconstruct the idea and show it again until you think you have something worthy.
At Thinkersco, co-creation sessions are a key part of the project as they complement any research very well. In these sessions you get the main needs of your client, because thanks to the prototype or your seed concept the user is able to express himself better.
Would you like to know real examples? We invite you to see our real projects here.