I've been working with clients who want to create new native apps. They already have apps for their business and want to create apps to reach a broader audience. So, my company (and me, by default) is tasked with coming up with app concepts.
The problem is not coming up with app concepts. The challenge is coming up with apps that will need people's needs and solve problems.
Our approach has been to conduct a stakeholder workshop to:
- draw out user personas with stakeholders from the client (company)
- brainstorm on app concepts that will meet the needs of these personas
- list down features that could potentially be in the app
Needless to say, clients always have tight budgets and we usually go down this path. However, the problem with this approach is that it is all based on assumptions and hypothesis. And the apps may not meet the needs of real people with real problems.
So, I've been trying to find out what the best ways to conduct user research are in order to:
Validate app concepts
That is, find out if there is a need for the concept that we came up with. We want to avoid asking leading questions or questions about the future, like: will you use "this" app? Or what do you think about this kind of app etc.
I'd like to know your thoughts and appreciate any insightful comments and suggestions/recommendations.