Asking questions and understanding needs;
Why designers needs researchers (and viceversa)
Have you ever worked with a client so centered on selling that he thinks his product will be loved by “everyone”?
You ask questions about the target audience and they keep thinking it’s for everyone. You tweak the questions and ask to get examples of what they would like the packaging to communicate and their response is “that’s why I am hiring you. You are the expert. Please design something that is well liked by everyone. Make it appealing” You feel stuck AND have to design for an “unknown persona”!
As a designer you know that before you can ideate a solution, you need to understand the target you are solving for. However, there are a couple of things about design that most clients don’t know.
- Information gaps are not fertile grounds for design, they are fertile grounds for research.You are not asking questions to be “difficult” or appear “artsy”.
- Design is intentional, functional and iterative. It is future oriented. It begins by listening to clients or users, defining who you are (or the product), how you are different, developing a strategy and executing it. Design is not aesthetics.
- Good design tells a story about a problem (or pain), and ends with a solution or at least, an improvement.