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Assumptions are good for your content strategy

2ea2d24094de48879bb88733389c7fb0?s=47 andyhealey
April 15, 2019

Assumptions are good for your content strategy

We’re always told that making assumptions is a dangerous thing to do, but we still make them every day. When designing content and UX for our products and apps, we make all kinds of assumptions.

In this talk, you’ll see how a group of 19th-century American philosophers promoted the use of assumptions to make decisions quickly. We’ll look at how lessons from mountaineering accidents in the U.K. show us how to make the right kind of content assumptions. And we’ll learn how to run an assumption slam, so that you can check just how risky your content beliefs are.

In this session, you’ll learn:
- How to check your content hypotheses at the start of a project
- That having some subconscious biases can aid decisions on content
- How to identify any dangerous assumptions about content or users, and how to make them safer

2ea2d24094de48879bb88733389c7fb0?s=128

andyhealey

April 15, 2019
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Transcript

  1. Assumptions are good for your content strategy ANDY HEALEY -

    CONTENT STRATEGIST, SHOPIFY
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  4. Flickr: sheilaellen / creative commons

  5. POUT-WHAT? Flickr: sheilaellen / creative commons

  6. INTER-WHAT?

  7. Jaws

  8. Basic human needs Interac Poutine SELF-
 ACTUALIZATION Pursue Inner Talent

    Creative Achievement SELF-ESTEEM Achievement Mastery Recognition Respect BELONGING/LOVE Friends Family Spouse Lover SAFETY Security Stability Freedom from Fear PHYSIOLOGICAL Food Water Shelter Warmth
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  11. Gill, by Lucy Leicester

  12. Assumptions are an integral part of our decision-making process

  13. “A decision, even a bad one, is still way better

    than no decision at all.”
 
 - It’s not the decision, it’s a decision 
 Cynthia Savard Saucier and Alëna Louguina
  14. It’s OK 
 to make assumptions Make inclusive assumptions Check

    your assumptions 1 2 3
  15. It’s OK 
 to make assumptions Make inclusive assumptions Check

    your assumptions 1 2 3
  16. It wasn’t that long ago, honest…

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  20. John Dewey William James Charles Peirce

  21. Πράγμα Get Sh1t Done!

  22. • There is no universal truth since everyone experiences their

    own world and environments in their own way, at their own time, in a variety of situations
  23. • There is no universal truth since everyone experiences their

    own world and environments in their own way, at their own time, in a variety of situations • If something seems to work satisfactorily, then assume that it does work satisfactorily
  24. • There is no universal truth since everyone experiences their

    own world and environments in their own way, at their own time, in a variety of situations • If something seems to work satisfactorily, then assume that it does work satisfactorily • Always allow for the possibility that a more effective solution will be found
  25. • There is no universal truth since everyone experiences their

    own world and environments in their own way, at their own time, in a variety of situations • If something seems to work satisfactorily, then assume that it does work satisfactorily • Always allow for the possibility that a more effective solution will be found User personas, journey mapping…
  26. • There is no universal truth since everyone experiences their

    own world and environments in their own way, at their own time, in a variety of situations • If something seems to work satisfactorily, then assume that it does work satisfactorily User personas, journey mapping… Data, testing… • Always allow for the possibility that a more effective solution will be found
  27. • There is no universal truth since everyone experiences their

    own world and environments in their own way, at their own time, in a variety of situations • If something seems to work satisfactorily, then assume that it does work satisfactorily • Always allow for the possibility that a more effective solution will be found User personas, journey mapping… Data, testing… Design crits, UX research…
  28. It’s OK 
 to make assumptions Make inclusive assumptions Check

    your assumptions 1 2 3
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  32. “there is no easy way up Tryfan” “extremely misleading and

    gives a false representation” “virtually impossible to follow”
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  34. “easy” is easy for everyone they would find and read

    all the warnings their experience level ! the description and map were clear
  35. “easy” is easy for everyone they would find and read

    all the warnings a certain level of proficiency the description and map were clear Information
 architecture Naming 
 patterns User needs
 analysis User testing Content strategy
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  37. It’s the same route, but a different journey

  38. “Shopify merchants are busy people who may be running their

    online business in addition to having a full-time job, managing their family life, and doing a million other things. They’re also located all over the world, have varying levels of literacy, and some may not speak English as their first language.” Shopify Polaris Design System
  39. “Shopify merchants are busy people who may be running their

    online business in addition to having a full-time job, managing their family life, and doing a million other things. They’re also located all over the world, have varying levels of literacy, and some may not speak English as their first language.” Shopify Polaris Design System
  40. It’s OK 
 to make assumptions Make inclusive assumptions Check

    your assumptions 1 2 3
  41. a content story…

  42. • 40% bounce rate • 22% open rate Emails

  43. “that’s not ideal”

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  45. Assumption

  46. “The hardest assumption to challenge 
 is the one you

    don't even know you are making.” Douglas Adams
  47. Assumption slam • I believe my users have a need

    to ____________. • I believe these needs can be solved with ____________. • I believe the #1 value a user wants to get out of this is ____________. • I believe the user can also get these additional benefits ___________. • I believe my biggest product risk is ____________.
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  49. High risk Low risk Known Unknown

  50. High risk Low risk Known Unknown

  51. Defer Plan Understand Evaluate

  52. 1. Develop research hypotheses
 2. Test them out with users


    3. Analyze the results and iterate Reduce the risk
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  54. • Are we giving users a clear value prop?
 •

    Do they feel secure enough?
 • Will the lack of friction freak them out?
  55. Value prop Security Reassuring

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  57. It’s OK 
 to make assumptions Make inclusive assumptions Check

    your assumptions 1 2 3
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  60. Thanks