9
5 Comments

🗾 Have you heard about the empathy map? It helped me a lot

Empathy maps are a great way to figure out pain points and opportunities.

Hi all. I’m a UX/UI designer with over 10 years of experience in this field and I want to share some quick tips that get me results in my line of work.

When I think about any product building process. It all starts with a better understanding of your user. There are techniques such as personas, customer journey mapping and etc. The problem with them is that they are super time consuming to do.

You spend 20-30h of research but it doesn’t always answer the question of how exactly you can provide value to your user.

I am not downplaying the importance of these methods. However, I have a way to get to a similar result faster.

Have you heard about empathy maps?

According to Paul Boag, an empathy map is a collaborative tool that teams can use to better understand their customers. It consists of an image of the customer surrounded by six sections.

They are faster to create than customer journey maps. Empathy map sections are:

  • Think and feel. What matters to the user? What occupies her thinking? What worries and aspirations does she have?
  • Hear. What are friends, family, and other influencers saying to her that impacts her thinking?
  • See. What things in her environment influence her? What competitors is she seeing? What is she seeing friends do?
  • Say and do. What is her attitude towards others? What does she do in public? How has her behavior changed?
  • Pain. What fears, frustrations or obstacles is she facing?
  • Gain. What is she hoping to get? What does success look like?

The problem with the original that it was a bit too generic and some sections did not help me at all.

The reason I quoted Paul Boag is that I use this improved empathy map 2.0. This is a lot closer to reality than the first one.

Revised empathy map by Paul Boag

It consists of elements such as:

  • Tasks. What tasks are users trying to complete? What questions do they need to be answered?
  • Feelings. How is the user feeling about the experience? What matters to them.
  • Influences. What people, things, or places may influence how the user acts?
  • Pain points. What pain points might the user be experiencing that they hope to overcome?
  • Goals. What is the user's ultimate goal? What are they trying to achieve?

Try this out with a piece of paper to see if there is anything you had missed regarding your users. It’s good to repeat this exercise every 1-2 months.

If you have some questions. Let me know in the comments. I realized that I have years worth of things that I can share with people who are making something amazing.

  1. 2

    Sounds really cool. I'm interested in your personal experience with empathy maps. Do you have some use case that you would like to share?

    1. 1

      Agreed. It would be very helpful if @arthurleonov could provide a specific example of how he implemented his empathy map v2 in one of his projects.

      1. 1

        @kaishounachi @meoweloper In my line of work I usually charge by the hour. It's really difficult to sell extra 20-30h of hours of just client research. Hence why empathy maps were a good way to wrap my head around a product.

        How this could be implemented if you have some time. This could go in tandem with personas. Imagine this as a compliment to what you might think you user is.

        The most important part for me is pain point section. What is the user. What tasks he or she is trying to achieve and in what part of the process I can same most time.

  2. 1

    Sounds interesting. Already planning to try it this week

  3. 1

    Thanks for sharing that!

  4. 1

    This comment was deleted a month ago.

Trending on Indie Hackers
What do you think about NFTs? 36 comments Speed is the killer feature 21 comments Getting sick of the phrase "build an audience" 16 comments Is the vidds UX too crazy? Can you make a video for your SaaS? 11 comments 10 Reasons To Be Bullish On The Creator Economy In 2021 8 comments Twitter is testing a way for indie hackers to sell products through tweets 5 comments