Posts tagged “guerilla”

ChittahChattah Quickies

  • [from steve_portigal] My Notes on Steve Portigal’s presentation – Design Fieldwork: Uncovering Innovation from the Outside In [The Pam] – [Pam pulls out the key points from my UIE WAMT presentation that most resonated with her.] The knowledge “You’re not your user” creates empathy, but going out to the field makes you listen and understand what your users are going through. Through fieldwork you can detect unmet business goals. Doing fieldwork can accomplish many research goals at the same time, not only about the users but also about your organizational goals.
  • [from steve_portigal] Web App Masters: Uncovering Innovation with Fieldwork [LukeW] – [Luke's summary notes from my 75-minute talk.] Be a methods-polygamist. Choose, mash-up, or create a methodology based on the problem you are trying to solve. Integrate with other methods. Create a library of methods and artifacts that you can call on and modify as needed. Different methodologies tell you different things. It’s not an either or.
  • [from julienorvaisas] Let’s Be Frank: Divisadero Public Discussion Board [The Bold Italic] – [Building on yesterday's quickie – here's a local example of the use of public space as a form for gathering thoughts of residents.] I think it's cool that people can participate after the event by writing their thoughts on the chalkboards. This neighborhood has evolved so much in the last few years, and I'm sure everyone who lives here has thoughts about the transformation, good and bad. I'm personally worried that the changes will leave out members of the old neighborhood, but I'm hopeful when I see the community come together on projects like these. However you feel about the change, I think it's a positive step when people are asked to voice their opinions in the process. So neighbors of Divisadero, don't be shy, what do you think the community needs?

ChittahChattah Quickies

  • [from julienorvaisas] Artist Posts Neighborhood Surveys and Infographics on the Streets of Boston [GOOD] – [Together at last, street art and research. redefining guerilla research.] Since March, Devin, an artist based in the Boston neighborhood of Somerville, has been making small posters and taping them up on phone poles and other public fixtures. They come in three varieties (or "flavors," to use his term). "Mappy Facts" show people demographic data, like average income levels by neighborhood, on colorful maps. "Street Surveys" are more participatory, asking passersby questions about their relationship to their neighborhood, with tear-away tabs for them to answer with. A third flavor features poetry. The surveys aren't scientific, of course, but it's possible that people who encounter Devin's art will come away with a better understanding of their city, or be prompted to think about their own relationship to the place they live. You can download and print the survey posters and put them up in your own city if you're curious about how your neighbors perceive their home.

ChittahChattah Quickies

  • [from steve_portigal] Marrow Donor Campaign Relied on Flirtation, Officials Say [] – [Guerrilla marketing tactics from the past (?) being used for slightly more virtuous purposes] The recruiters were actually flirtatious models in heels, short skirts and lab coats, asking passers-by for DNA swabs. The registry, Caitlin Raymond International, was paying up to $60,000 a week for the models. The state’s senior assistant attorney general said the registry had hired models based on their photographs and had given them “explicit instructions” to wear heels and short skirts. The registry paid the models to approach potential donors at dozens of malls and events throughout New England. “The models worked the crowds, if you will,” he said. “We were told basically they would engage a lot of younger men with some sort of flirtatious thing: ‘Hey, don’t you want to be a hero? Come on, do this!" If people expressed interest the models — who, for reasons that remain unclear, sometimes also wore electric-blue wigs — would hand them off to registry employees who would take mouth swabs.

ChittahChattah Quickies

  • [from steve_portigal] The $5 Guerrilla User Test [Bumblebee Labs Blog] – [While we're obviously big advocates of getting input about designs from people as frequently as possible and at various levels of fidelity, it's a bit dissonant when informal methods get distilled (so to speak) into formal-seeming methods without any of the purposefulness and planfulness of established methods. Challenging to my assumptions and thus helpfully provocative] Drunk people are a pretty accurate mimic of distracted, indifferent people. This insight has lead to a wonderful technique I’ve been refining over the years that I call “The $5 Guerrilla User Test”. Here’s the 5 second version: 1. Bring a laptop to a bar, 2. Offer to buy someone a beer in exchange for participating in a user study, 3. Watch your application crash & burn as people do all sorts of ridiculous ass shit they would never do in a lab but constantly do in real life, 4. Go back, apply the lessons you have learnt, repeat until you have an app that is 100% drunk person proof

Clever or deceptive?

John Winsor describes a Starbucks promotion

… when he saw a guy starting to drive off with a Starbucks’ coffee cup on top of his car. [He] whistled at the guy who promptly thanked him and got out of the car to hand him a coupon to Starbucks.

No doubt this is effective; it made an impression on the warn-er, it made an impression on John, and the story is being spread.

But it’s deceptive. John suggests (if I read him properly) that this promotion and indeed Starbucks are great. I don’t know how I would react, but hearing the story makes me angry and resentful. The work of fending off scams – any situation where someone wants something from you that will have to give up if you aren’t careful – is mighty. I can’t trust the person who chats me up in a bar (not that this happens to me personally, of course) in case they are promoting booze or mobile phones. I can’t trust the phone calls or emails I get. And now I can’t trust the person who needs a little Good Samaritan assistance. If I help someone get their bag under their seat on the plane ride home tonight, will they offer me a flyer about Samsonite? Gah, I hope note.

Our culture mostly expects a clear delineation between content and promotion (with many many many exceptions); the people I’m talking to this week about how they learn what foods go with what wines are a great example: if Trader Joe’s puts up an end-cap with a chalkboard that describes the wine on display, that’s okay. Sure, Trader Joe’s was paid by the wine maker to do this, but it’s preferable than having this information on the bottle. There’s a comfort and credibility in context; even if we understand what’s going on behind the scenes. Breaking through that, as Starbucks is trying to do is notable, but personally uncomfortable.

Update: this has been going on for at least a year


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