11 aug Mario Bros finds service design patterns
[Video at the end of the blog]
In service design the goal is to build an end-to-end journey in which you capture all the steps the customer goes through. But which steps are the most used, which are the steps the customers like or not and in which order you put them? Because not all customers walk the same path during an experience. Next to that, they also not make the same mistakes or facing the same problems during the journey. To understand better how you can design a service based on the pattern most customers follow, I want to use an easy example from the gaming industry. It explains how patterns in service design work.
In the computer game Mario Bros, there are many possibilities for succeeding a level, and you can make choices in many moments. You need to jump over holes, you can take a green tube take a faster way, you need to kill enemies, speed up when there is fire and destroy stones to enter a new way. There is not one best way, because e.g. there are different motivations per user possible. Like collecting the most points, killing as much enemies as possible, discover new areas, finding the fastest way or collecting coins to get free lives. For every user there are different motivations to choose a path or activities, just as in the journey of your customers in your organization.
Another metric is the level of experience and the motivation and reason to play. Some users want to improve their score, others want to kill time and others want to enjoy playing with each other and show their skills. There is no ideal path, there is no one path and there is no ‘one’ customer.But there is an interesting method that gives us much more information then when we look at one user at the time. When we looking at the pattern, when we analyze almost a thousand users at the same time, we see something incredible. Because then we see behavior of the individuals compared to the behavior of the whole group. We see a pattern and in this pattern we can recognize what most users are doing, which mistakes they make, what path the fastest is, where they need to recover or change their strategy, etc. It is really easy to see, you will see it when you look at the YouTube video.
This simple method allows u to understand the behavior of most of the users, because we see the large group doing the same thing. With this analogy we can perfectly translate the large group of users in Mario Bros, to your customers in the service design of their journey. Because imagine you can look at your customers all at once when they walk the path of the journey in your organization. Then you will see where most of them have problems, they do a step twice or more, they skip certain steps you builded on purpose, they stay longer at a place because they like it, etc. You see more when you see them all, because interviewing or observing one client don’t give you enough information to see a pattern. And the interesting conclusion is that when you look at many customers at the same time, you see that one ideal path. Just look at them all and look from a distance, you will see it. And that’s the one you need to design, that’s the one most of your customers want. Good luck!
Danny Peters is Customer Experience consultant at Conexperience, specialized in Customer Journey Mapping and Customer Experience Management. He works mostly for large companies in Customer Experience projects and is exclusive partner of Touchpoint Dashboard in The Netherlands. Touchpoint Dashboard is online Customer Journey Mapping software.