User Driven Design: Annoying Buzzword or Actual Value?

Correct me if I'm wrong, but none of the people in that picture above are working on a website.

But let's assume they're your client's in-house marketing team. That makes them "users" (and a lot more than that, too, but we can ignore those for now.)

User-driven design means they dictate what you, as a marketer, are doing for their website that they are entrusting you to build by leveraging the expertise you have (and they don't have.) Sounds like a meaningless buzzword? I think so, but you tell me 🙂

Is customer feedback valuable? Yes.

Do you NEED to actually do everything they say they want? No... Assuming you actually know better and can demonstrate why.

This idea of growth driven design or user-driven design is, in retrospect, nothing but a fad. A cheap attempt at taking old buzzwords in the UX and heuristics world and applying them to the marketing world. Many tech folks who have made the switch to marketing are acutely aware that the all-marketing types are, almost always, overly and unquestionably accepting of whatever the latest buzzword their employer/software/industry is jamming down their mouth.

It's unfortunate because clients think they hire critical thinkers, but these thinkers aren't thinking critically about their own methods and efficacy. I could just be a pessimistic tightwad, but in reality, this has held to be true more often than not.

If you want to take a step back in time - well, not that far - check out this final link of an article my colleagues and I worked on at my prior agency.

Reading only the excerpt below is a good personal reminder for me - don't be so short-sighted! "User-driven design", "data-driven decision making", oh please.

If you haven't heard by now, Growth Driven Design (or GDD) is one of the biggest movements in Inbound marketing to surface in the past year. Also known as User Driven Design, the GDD methodology draws elements from process frameworks in agile development and customer development.

Delve further into the buzzword abyss here.