An excellent way to test an idea quickly with customers

Let me introduce a quick and cheap way to test new service ideas. It might sound a bit scary to test a new idea with real customers at the early stage of the service development process but it is worth it.

I had a chance to be part of an interesting project. Laurea University of Applied Sciences and Design Agency Kuudes Kerros did a service design project which aim was to improve student services at all Laureas campuses.

After we had gathered insights we ideated new services in small groups. One finding discovered through customer data was that student services are spread in different places. Our group ideated a solution for that problem. A help desk that serves students with their various questions was invented. A mobile tracking system was also designed to complete the service.


Next came the testing part. A group of students was assembled to hear our pitches and to evaluate them.

In a nutshell pitch is a planned presentation of a service or product that aims to persuade a customer to buy the service or product. A good pitch consist of a description of a problem and explanation how your service solves it.

We got feedback how to improve the service and whether the service is useful for the customers or not. After a first pitch round we made some changes and then pitched the idea again to a new group of students.

PitchingThis is how service design works. Products and services are tested in an early phase. Money and time is saved. This way the service is partly co-produced with customers and useless services fall of during the process. Customers can be involved in every phase of a service design project. Working this way guarantees better results.

Text and pictures by Laura Rinta-Jouppi SID student 2014

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