A customer or user persona is a archetype or semi-fictitious character created from the Design team’s ethnographic research. The persona represents a specific customer or customer groups needs. Designers usually create a persona to help guide the creation of products or services with a specific user in mind, helping to answer the important question of, “Who are we designing for?”.
Through use of empathy, the Design team can use personas to better understand the expectations and motivations of a customer or group – leading to the creation of more innovation solutions and exceptional experiences. Other advantages of using personas as part of the Design process include:
- Allow the Design team to view the problem and potential solutions through a different perspective (removing personal bias).
- Identify with and connect with the customer they are designing for, seeing the persona as a real person, which may motivate the team to create the best possible solutions.
- Create a shared understanding of who the customer is and what they expect, visualizing the personas motivations, desires, and needs to arrive at a common goal and provide direction for making decisions.
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