Yesterday, I (and Danny) got to attend the Stockholm Startup Weekend Bootcamp hosted by Stockholm Startup Weekend at the venue for Young Innovation HUB. It was basically a workshop held to prepare all participants of the coming Startup Weekend. The theme of the bootcamp this time was focus on Product Design, or design in particular.

After having a lecture about the importance of a good business model for the success of your business idea, I found it very useful to (6 hours later) learn that a good product design and the way you want to convey your idea/product/service to others is very important as well. I think you have to have both: a solid business model and a good presentation so that you gain your public attraction. And then the best way to sustain that is through substance, which would your business model.

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Anyhow, with that being said… The event consisted of several speakers who focused on the theme of product deisgn. One of the speakers was Erik Ceder, who works at Veryday, which is a people-and end-user driven desing company that has had large corporate customer like Spotify, Toyota, IKEA and so on (the list was endless, phew). It is actually one of the top 5 design consultancies in the world! Furthermore, Ceder has also won the Red Dot Award for Product Design, which is basically equivalent  to the oscars in the digital design world. Pretty cool 🙂

The speakers gave us some useful tips in how to make your product i.e. app, webdesign etc. appealing and easy to grasp for your customers, or to the audience just in general. They 3 main tips were:

1) Simplify it/Less is More (even though you get lots of ideas for your product/service you need to scale you down layout to simplicity for others to easily understand and see a red thread)

2) Bring it to life/Branding (your product must have character and personality to create a credibility with your customers)

3) Fake It ’til You Make It (really spend time on developing your business plan)

Something else that I learned, and something the speakers were very good at pointing out was that Design is really about Conversion, meaning that it is in the end about changing behaviors (of users) and making usage more simple. One pretty interesting tip was that you should do the so-called “squint test, meaning that you should stand 3 meters away from you webpage or app to see what your customers would notice first. Then you should ask yourself if you like what you see  😎

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All in all, I believe that design/product design is a crucial part in developing your idea/product/service. It is a way to convey a message, a chance to showcase your stuff to your customers and instill a feeling or create a connection in and with them, especially when a lot of today’s innovation are digital – several business ideas that I have seen for the past few weeks have been based on mobile apps – we surely are going more and more digital!

However, a good busines splan and model is just as important. So I think both must go equally well hand-in-hand. So watch for my next post where I will go deeper into business plan/model generation! Also, read Danny’s post too to get more perspectives! 🙂

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