Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Blog 10: Final Insights

From the Insight/Experience Audit & Prototype project this semester, I have gained deeper insight into what drives consumer’s behavior and how they feel regarding certain products and services. The segment I specifically worked on was the 10-13 year old boys in the backyard. From this project I learned more about this segment and the attitudes they encompass towards their backyards. My specific learnings are as followed:

Thinking of a Product:
Once we had gathered and analyzed our research, it was time to start brainstorming ideas on how to create a product based on these insights. We had a decent amount of findings and results, but we just had a difficult time using these insights to come up with a product. We had to take into consideration how likely our segment will actually use the product, if our segment’s parents will actually purchase this, and how well our product will serve a need for our segment. We came up with ideas ranging from mobile forts to pooper scoopers to lightweight bricks. We eventually decided on goggles that generated an image out in the backyard so our segment could essentially play video games outside. Then we gradually modified ideas and with each idea, we determined how feasible each one would be and how our segment would use our product. Our brainstorming session included goggles that went under water, goggles that give the perception that the backyard is 10x’s a big, and even goggles that allow you to play with your own pets in a virtual state. We finally decided that 1) our segment loves playing war/strategy/shooting video games from their consoles (Wii, Xbox, Playstation) and 2) our segment, for the most part, had an interest in playing in teams and competitions.

We finally came up with a product that generates holographic images in the goggles and allows users to shoot at these images with a Wii remote. We also wanted to partner with Wii because they already have a segment that interactive, motion sensitive games. We felt it was logical to have a motion sensitive console, pair with an interactive such as our product. We really had to connect our segment’s attitudes and behaviors into the creation of our product, and we used our own research findings and conclusions to tailor our product to their needs. By delving into our findings and research, we were able to create a product that fit our target segment’s desires and wants.

Creating a Prototype:
Coming up with a product was difficult enough, but actually making the product was a totally different story. We had the idea of creating goggles that allows the user to see holographic images out in the areas surrounding them. We immediately thought of using actual swim goggles or large sunglasses as our base. However, we felt we needed to add some sort of creative aspect to distinguish our product from just being ordinary-looking goggles. We then drew insight from our target segment such as color schemes and even comfort. We learned that colors play a crucial role in what toys and games they played with so we decided we needed a ‘boyish’ color. We ended up choosing a platinum silver because that was the color of many of their iPods and controllers. We then decided to cut out the nose holes from the swim goggles we were using. We did this because we learned, from our observations, that our segment likes to run around rambunctiously which causes them to breathe deeply and heavily. Since we were using holographic images, we might as well make the outside of our product look holographic as well, so we attached a holographic sheet of paper on top. As far as the inside of the goggles, we decided to depict what they would see if they had the goggles on and were playing one of their games. We decided to insert a picture of a backyard with Star Wars Storm Troopers in the background.

From this part of the project, we were initially lost on how to create such a prototype, but by looking at our segment and evaluating our findings, we were able to gradually construct our prototype. I learned that when you are stuck, looking back at your research always helps build ideas and gets the thought process going. Utilizing the insights gained and thinking broadly was a major component in producing a product.

Emotional Reactions:
As far as the group aspect of the product, there were a mix of positive and negative feelings throughout. The negatives were that there were so many minds with potentially thoughtful ideas, it was hard to decide on which one was best for our project. We were essentially left with the Paradox of Choice on many occasions. We also conducted different sections of the research methodology so at times it was difficult to combine thoughts and ideas on one steady and flowing perspective. We are all different and all had various ideas on how to approach our segment so it was challenging and even frustrating to find common ground sometimes. However, we had a larger array of options available on what ideas we could choose from. Also, everyone had different perspectives of what were important in our product, so we were able to pull certain ideas from one another and use them to add to our own ideas. I felt that our team had fairly strong chemistry so it was challenging (in a positive manner) to top one another’s ideas. Group members brought up great points that were integrated into other potential ideas. I felt by working with a group on this, it opened up new perspectives and allowed me to build on others’ great ideas. Like I mentioned earlier, although it was frustrating, I overall enjoyed coming up with a new and innovative product with my group.