Baking in UX











What’s with the User Experience design frenzy right now? Let’s break it down. I think of UX as the science of designing from a user’s perspective. With intention. Optimized navigation. Clarity. Thinking about what and why from beginning to end. For the client and consumer alike. Maybe you’re thinking, “Where can I find one of these UX designers?” And if so, maybe you’re in trouble. Because everyone on your team should be thinking this way from the get-go.

I just finished reading Baked In: Creating Products and Businesses That Market Themselves. (I know, it’s about time I read this.) A few years old, but the message holds that we should not design for self-indulgence. If we bake in the marketing at the start, we’re doing everyone a favor. New toys should never overpower brand strategy.  The book talks heavily about something called “design intuition” — “a tool to translate experiences into action by marrying rational thinking with the emotional feelings that arise.” This really means using design to create conversions. “To be effective, design intuition should be rooted in reality, logic, knowledge, and experience.” Alex Bogusky and John Windsor encourage everyone to tap into their own inner intuitive designer. Integrate user experience thinking into all of your decisions by asking some questions you might feel uncomfortable with due to their subjective nature. Ex: How do you feel about using __________? What makes this small business owner frustrated about your mobile app? What is this shopper worried about clicking here? Why does the layout make people leave your homepage? Get specific.

It’s no wonder this title has emerged out of necessity, necessity for how hyper-specialized the interactive space is becoming. My question is, will this create a “That’s not my job” mentality? Crippling our common sense because we leave the UX designer to think about that? You are a consumer. You are a user. You enjoy hassle-free experiences as much as the next person. No doubt some of us are better at keeping the big picture together, but let’s all be a bit more conscientious of designing for the user. Try to bake it in from the start. Otherwise we’re getting it very wrong.


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