Vlog – Episode 02: User Interviews, Customer Development

DISCLAIMER The purpose of this blog & vlog is not to teach anyone anything. The sole purpose is to record the progress and useful resources to come back to. I provide personal opinion and views which could be wrong, this is a learning process. Thanks, yo!

This week in learning (June 22-28)

The first task I was given this week is to conduct 8 user interviews about my idea/-s on the spot. This caught me a bit off guard as I have not conducted interviews (not job interviews!) before.

Having succeeded with 4 out of 8 I felt proud and rested assured the interviews went fine. The next lesson opened a lot of new things for me:

  • the way I conducted the interviews was all wrong
  • I was asking wrong questions
  • as a consequence I was getting wrong or useless answers

On the positive side I did manage to get some insights I could use.

First steps to kick off ANY idea

  • [Optional] Step 0: Conduct initial user interviews.
    In order to understand your audience better you need to meet your users face-to-face and ask a lot of questions. This way you will get a better understanding about your audience and the idea.
  1. Come up with 3 personas.
    Persona is a typical user of your product. You can come up with them yourself or you can get some insights while conducting initial user interviews in Step 0. Use this template to describe your personas.
  2. Find 8 candidates matching each persona
    In order to clearly understand if the persona is a fit or get more insights we'll have to conduct more interviews. This is the step where 'The Mom Test' becomes very handy – the book tells you a lot of tips on how to best conduct those vital interviews.
  3. Think of hypotheses
    Think of what you would like to prove / confirm during those interviews, think of different ways your product will work and write the most important ones down.
  4. Conduct User Interviews
    This is the most important step. You should be more prepared for it now (since you've read the book and have accomplished Step 0, right?!). Make the maximum out of these interviews – they will save you a ton of money and time in the future.
  5. Collect all above in a Customer Development Canvas
    Having this all in front of you will help you see the bigger picture.

These are the steps we went through last week and are continuing this week – user interviews tend to take a lot of time, but do try to have as many of them as you can.