25 July 2017
The Customer Discovery Journey
Know Thy Customer
“The main tenet of design thinking is empathy for the people you’re trying to design for.”
- David Kelley, founder of IDEO
So, we put down our spreadsheets and turned to the 8 years of combined experience on our CE team.
DIXIE GRIFFIN: They’re entrepreneurial, and hard-working. Our customers tend to emphasize the beauty, and the design, when they talk about our products.
EDMUND SANDOVAL: Our customers like meaningful things. They like that we’re local, small and independent.
From Surveys to Video Calls
We were only getting started! We were learning some of our customer’s ‘why’—why they supported Grovemade, why they liked (or didn’t like!) our products. Now it was time to go straight to the source. We unleashed a range of surveys on our customers—and they responded with Gusto and Pizzazz! We loved getting to read through all of the responses, and learned so much in the process. We even designed a totally new product because of the responses to one of the surveys (The Minimalist Belt).
We ended each survey with a question: “Would you be willing to talk more?” Jim and I set up video calls with anyone that wanted to talk, and we sat, and listened, and got to meet some amazing people. The different careers and backgrounds were all exciting—everyone’s story was remarkable in its own way.
The Inspiration Runs Deep
Throughout the whole process, there’s one thing that kept hitting home—our fans and customers do inspiring things. Artists, creative directors, tech startup CEOs and night shift ER doctors, graphic designers and musicians, the list goes on and on. And regardless of the career, we were impressed at the thoughtfulness and sensitivity to design and objects. We saw a lot of our sensibilities reflected in our customers, which was incredibly rewarding and exciting!
"The more we thought about it, the more we realized that our customers really are the ‘why’ at Grovemade."
We had started with data, and gotten all the way to 45+ minute video calls. We were starting to get a better idea of who our customers were, and how their needs overlapped with our products. More and more, our mindset was shifting towards inclusivity: Grovemade would always be focused on designing things our way, but we want to be aware of your needs and motivations, too.