At UserTribe we talk a lot about how much companies can learn by understanding and collaborating with their customers. We know this is true because every time we deliver a project, we learn something new. Each research study contributes to our knowledge of research methodology, recruitment, data collection, analysis, and delivery.
We love talking to our customers about how they were able to use the insights we shared with them. Below are six lessons in customer-centricity that we’ve learned by partnering with some seriously cool companies. We think these lessons are universally applicable, no matter what industry you’re in or what project phase you’re working on.
1. Build. Test. Learn.
As a leading consumer finance supplier in Finland, most of Santander’s sales are conducted online. But there was a problem: large amounts of customers were dropping out during their online loan application process. UserTribe’s in-depth user research offered more than the standard usability suggestions. Our practical insights revealed the reasons why users were confused or dissatisfied by the process and unwilling to continue.
- Deep understanding of the underlying issues causing high drop off rates.
- Specific recommendations to improve the language and flow of the online application process.
- Improvements to their internal work processes on how to bring customers in to validate decision-making from early development stages.
- Higher converting online application process with fewer drop-offs.
“It’s important to do it as a process, more than a project. Because the world is changing all the time, and even if you don’t make any changes, it might be that the market or the customers’ expectations keep changing, and you never know when you are out of date.”
— Usko Manninen, Santander Consumer Finance
2. Small studies drive big results.
To compete against top tier consultancies, Scandinavia-based Qvartz needed to prove that they could connect with customers around the world, in their local languages. With UserTribe’s network, QVARTZ was able to collect original insights from their target demographic on five different continents. Even though the total number of participants was small (34 in total), the results were strong enough to demonstrate Qvartz’s global capabilities and win the project.
- Unique customer insights from 34 participants from Kenya, Thailand, France, Brazil, and the USA.
- Saved money compared to internal resources required to complete similar research.
- QVARTZ won the project, out-competing tier one consultancies.
“In all pitch situations, it’s great to have the voice of the customer. But it’s just very time consuming and resource-heavy. With UserTribe it took seven days. It’s a no brainer that you should do it.”
— Jens Friis Hjortegaard, Partner at QVARTZ
3. Test early. Test often.
With a wide variety of digital tools catering to their different customer segments, VELUX is always looking for ways to bring customer insights into their development processes. UserTribe was able to offer new methods for collecting user insights, allowing VELUX to focus on building and optimising their products.
- Sped up decision-making by validating early choices with customer insights.
- Saved money by avoiding costly mistakes and experiments.
- Introduced a variety of research methodologies to enhance projects at every phase of development.
“When you test a sketch, you can see if the customers really do not like it early on… [and] then you can stop and save a lot of money.”
— Lene Alice Bate, Senior Manager in VELUX
4. To grow, talk to people who aren’t your customers.
ReSound’s Relief app is one of the leading apps for relieving and managing tinnitus symptoms, so expanding and promoting it was a priority for the company. ReSound knew they needed to better understand the daily lives of those living with tinnitus in order to build a roadmap for expanding the app’s services and reach. UserTribe connected them to this hard-to-reach customer segment, providing deep insights on their daily lives and app preferences.
- Deep understanding of highly specialized customer segment.
- Fast insights that immediately informed their development pipeline.
- A clear roadmap for how to redevelop app and position it in the market..
“The whole process from ‘I have an idea, can you help me?’ to actually getting results and insights we can act upon was really smooth. It would have taken us ages to do that.”
— Juan Jose Romano, Product Manager at ReSound
5. Think Big. Start Small.
As part of an innovation hub at one of the world’s largest companies, the ISS Corporate Garage uses Google Venture’s Sprint methodology to generate new ideas. To make that process work better for them, they used UserTribe’s customer insights to quickly validate their initial concepts. Together, we accelerated their innovation process, helping their big dreams become reality.
- Unique insights into the work and technology habits of blue-collar workers in a developing country.
- Rapid validation of the initial concept, empower the team to move forward quickly.
- Improved work processes to better connect with current and potential customers.
“Our point of departure is always empathy, which is the first bit of classic design thinking.”
— Ulla Riber, Head of ISS Corporate Garage
6. Ask the right questions in the right way.
Danfoss’s traditional methods of gaining customer feedback were not delivering the results they needed. UserTribe’s international network was able to collect insights from industry experts in the US, delivering concrete feedback to Danfoss on how they can develop and position their equipment to be most competitive in a key strategic market.
- Specific insights into what industry experts in the US valued and prioritized in Danfoss’s steering units.
- Actionable recommendations on how to prioritize their development plan.
- A faster path to success by eliminating guesswork and reducing the risk of failure.
“We could actually see what the customers were saying. That’s very important and very different from what we had before.”
— Jonas Worm Hansen, Director of Strategic Development at Danfoss
The most important lesson of all is to stay curious. That means accepting that no matter how much research you do, there is always more to learn, more to explore, more to discover. We are always eager to go deeper into our methodologies and work processes, into our client relationships, into our research networks. We look forward to learning more as we deliver new projects to great companies.