Faster, Cheaper, Better – yes, you can have them all!

Faster, Cheaper, Better – yes, you can have them all! There are a few articles flying around that state for a product or service you have three fundamental options: Fast, Good and Cheap, but you can ever only choose two? When I first saw this, I thought, yep that’s about right. However, when this label started to get slapped onto every manner of product and service, something didn’t quite feel right. In fact, in today’s world, with the availability of agile and iterative tools and services, it is not fait accompli. Not only can you have all three attributes, but you should also be striving for Faster, Cheaper and Better. A mantra that continues to drive our business and now demanded of us! (Image Source) This is how it goes; you have the above three options for a product or service of which you can only ever choose either: Fast & Cheap, but not Good. Fast & Good, but not Cheap. Cheap & Good, but not Fast. So where did this come from? Its origins are in the project management triangle (left). A project manager’s tool used for defining and measuring a project goal. In short, it’s a planning tool to determine what the end product looks like. It now seems to be used by any incumbent in any industry which is being upset by disruption. In an article posted on business.com: “Fast, Good or Cheap. Pick Three?”. It argues that by applying an Agile and Lean process for product development, you can have all three. A statement that anyone who has worked in the SaaS industry knows to be exact! With...

User Experience issues in online market research

Do you collect feedback or customer insights? Did you test the online data collection experience first? Failing to check how your online market or social research set-up works with your target audience is likely to result in participant frustration and poor data collection. For those conducting their online surveys and online focus groups, a bad research participation user experience will deflate brand opinion and negatively skews the results. You only have to look at the Australian 2016 census survey fiasco to understand how a bad experience can lead to participant frustration. Look at some of the – not so rosy – comments received from participants completing online customer feedback and online research projects: “Why are you asking me to fill out this question, it’s not relevant to me?” “I can’t open this file, how am I supposed to comment on it?” “You haven’t told me how to share my video?” “Why am I getting this email and where did you get my name from?” “Oh, you didn’t tell me I needed a webcam!” “I can’t upload my file its in the wrong format, how do I convert it?” You may not even know you have created a user experience problem, or people are becoming frustrated by missing or poorly designed instructions. Most of the time participants will just give up or drop out. These kinds of issues mean you spend most of your day troubleshooting and redesigning the project when it should be running. Last minute changes don’t end well for the participant or customer and certainly doesn’t pan out well for you. How to minimise poor user experience...

5 steps to chat-based online focus groups success

Conducting a face to face, traditional style, focus group requires careful preparation to ensure the ninety-minutes spent with the panel of people is not wasted. Tasks such as checking your audio and video and making sure the refreshments are ready to be served.  You have people arriving in the waiting room where they are reading their consent slip, which explains their right and obligations by participating. The observers are already waiting for the group to start in another room looking at the group area through a one-way mirror or a video monitor. Just like traditional focus groups an online chat focus group takes the time to prepare but enables you to cut out a lot of the noise, expense, time, logistics and group dynamics. online chat focus groups are built for scale! Once you prepare for one group the easier, faster and cheaper it will be to conduct additional online focus groups. To get the most out of a chat-based online focus group follow these five steps for success. Schedule groups to run on a day and time that suits you and your participants. Forget about traffic and travel time, it’s no longer relevant, but do think about the times your participant’s might be sitting down to dinner or relaxing at home for the evening. Leave it too late and they become too relaxed and are likely to forgo participating at the last minute, start it too early you might not give them enough time to get home. Check with the recruiter, or the participants, what are the best times and choose a time which meets everyone in the...

7 Reasons chat online focus groups deliver insight

Chat online focus groups involves bringing a group of people together in a web browser environment at the same time to chat about ideas and questions guided by a structured discussion plan. In a traditional focus group, people might sit around a table or in close proximity in the same room, but in an online chat focus group people are sitting in their home or in any location that has internet access. The online focus group moderator manages the group over a sixty to ninety minute time frame by activating topics in a structured discussion plan. It’s as close as you can get to focus group chat automation using a real person to control the flow of the discussion and the depth of the participant responses – in real-time. People logged in to the online focus group express their views, thoughts and opinions in response to questions or topics through live text chat. You might ask people if they would purchase a proposed product or service, and why! What do you need to do to improve an offer so your target market would be more likely to buy or use your service? It goes without saying, these are the types of agile conversations you should be having with your target audience on a regular basis. Seven reasons why chat online focus groups work It is a perfect solution to engage a group of geographically dispersed participants of between 6 and 12 to get the answers you need on any topic. No need to wait for transcripts to be scribed form audio recordings the text chat transcripts are available right...

Case Study: Sentiment Text Analysis

The client “TasNetworks is a Tasmanian state-owned corporation that supplies power from the generation source to homes and businesses through a network of transmission towers, substations and powerlines.” The objective To uncover the sentiment and topic clustering hidden within the verbatim responses collected by the monthly ‘Satisfaction’ and ‘Ease Of Doing Business’ survey over a twelve month period. The customer verbatim sentiment analysis The textual data for each response was analysed for sentiment using a sentiment model which identifies the positive/negative/neutral polarity in the textual communication. The local polarity of the different sentences in the text is identified, and the relationship between them evaluated, resulting in a global polarity value for the whole text for a participant’s comment. This was done on a comment by comment level and scores were aggregated to provide a monthly or total score. The customer verbatim comment topic clustering We identified the text clusters by grouping a set of texts in such a way that comments in the same group (called a cluster) are more similar to each other than to those in other clusters. The clustering text algorithm receives a set of comments and returns the list of detected clusters. Each cluster is assigned a descriptive (topic name), a relevance value (indicating the relative importance of the cluster when compared to all other clusters), how often this descriptive topic is found, and the list of text elements that are included in the cluster.  Each comment may be assigned to one or several clusters. We then identified the scale and size of the sentiment and clusters based on the frequency and score. This provided...

Customer research in digital transformation

People expect a superior level of customer experience from businesses and organisations that use online channels to sell, distribute and support, their products and services. Customers expect you to know them, to be aware of their shopping preferences and know what solutions will solve their problems today. Digital empowerment means it’s now easy for customers to criticise a brand or rave about their product and services. It is because of this customer empowerment that digital transformation, for many organisations, will require the reshaping of the customer experience. Surprisingly, not all digital transformation projects place customer learning at the top of the digital transformation agenda. Interference from internal politics and silo protectionism unhinge and redirect the very best of intentions. Who owns the customer and information process can often result in a schoolyard spat between Customer Service, IT, Sales and Marketing. These are conflicts that leaders need to immediately address! Clearly, all parties need to be involved in the process and not just those who manage technology or define its use. Leaders need to be free to communicate effectively with their teams and share customer information which demonstrates the importance of each touch-point and the contact moment in the customer’s journey. To be effective, when it comes to understanding the customer’s journey, everyone needs to be on the same page. There needs to be clearly communicated benchmark and targets across the business for driving customer understanding. Leaders need to be free to communicate effectively with their teams and instil the importance of each customer touch-point and contact moment in the customer’s journey. Only then can everyone work together to proactively...