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Seven Principles of Game Design and Five Innovation Games that work

The gaming industry is larger than Hollywood, by many measures. People spend tremendous amounts of time and money on games—and even pay to watch other people play games (and not just baseball…the competitive video game market is huge…and baffling!). But *gamification* is everywhere too—in education, in corporate culture, in the innovation industry. Why?

One of our favorite books, Finite and Infinite games, talks about how games appear in time and space and make a goal and a winner clear at the end, based on rules. When compared with most parts of our lives, that seems like a pretty good bargain – at our jobs, when does the change stop? How do we know if something “worked” or didn’t, if the game never ends? Life is, by some measures, an infinite game, where the rules constantly change and winners turn into losers, and vice versa. It’s exhausting!

tweet-graphic-4Game Design principles to fuel innovation: Play, Reward, Fidelity, Constraints and more

Setting up games, with clear goals and constraints help focus our energies and efforts and can improve and clarify outcomes and motivate us to move forward to the next clearly defined challenge and reward cycle. We use games all the time in our facilitation work, drawing on books like “Gamestorming” and “The Systems Thinking Playboook” to get teams thinking differently and to increase creative output.

Seven Design Game Principles

The first  principle *not* covered in the boxes and arrows article referenced below is the question of Fidelity.

1. Fidelity:

Will the team be solving a challenge that is NOT like the current problem? That is, will the game be just for clarity and learning? Or will the team be solving a challenge like current challenges, but stripped down and simplified? There’s no hard rule on this…your mileage may vary. Our feeling is that an abstract or general challenge is best to loosen a team’s thinking up first, then to approach the challenge sideways, not directly. The “always, never” game is a great way to come at the principles to guide a solution to a challenge in a safe and fun way.

The rest are from Boxes and Arrows. You should check out their article for more links and discussion.

2. Objectives:

There needs to be some kind of goal or outcome that people can work towards. The more concrete and defined these are, the easier it is for people to participate. However, fuzzy objectives can be more rewarding, since they model real situations better. Consider more ambiguous objectives for teams that are already gelled and accept the ideas for design games.

3.Constraints:

There needs to be some limits on what players can or can’t do when achieving those objectives. Constraints should be relevant, related to each other, and present a coherent whole.

4. Success criteria:

There needs to be some way of knowing when the objectives are met. Clear success criteria help establish expectations and buy-in for game participation. Some games are more unstructured, with less well defined criteria. Classic role-playing games like Dungeons & Dragons don’t have a clear overall objective. That ambiguity can make such games better able to model some scenarios, but harder to sell inside an organization because they don’t have a set ending.

5. Reward:

Incentives that reward success can be intrinsic outcomes of the game (good results, recognition), embedded in the game itself (getting more Monopoly money), or external recognition or prizes (the winner gets dinner at a nice restaurant). Balancing rewards between players can be a challenge, and needs to be considered when adopting games.

6. Play:

The most important reward needs to be a sense of fun, encouraging interaction and intrinsic value for the game. That sense of play can be elusive—playtesting a design game in your own team is important to get a sense of what is fun, and what isn’t before you roll it out with a larger group. Play operates in the area of flow—balance the challenges of the game with the abilities of the players.

7. Competition (sometimes):

Sometimes, but not always, design games can involve individuals or teams competing to achieve those game objectives. While competition can be an easy game mechanic to introduce, it can also create the wrong dynamic depending on organizational culture and individual participants. Does competition make things fun, or turn people into raving lunatics bent on winning at all costs? If it’s the latter, you might look for more cooperative alternatives, including setting competition against previous performances, like beating your old record for ideas generated, instead of against other teams or individuals.

Five Design Games that always work

1. 100 uses for…

We often use “100 uses for…” as a way to get creative juices going and sometimes to prime a team to tackle a challenge. When I was in design school, one of my professors had a “100 ways to serve pizza” assignment. Everyone was given a pack of 100 paper plates and had to draw a serious or silly way of serving pizza. That was a week-long assignment, and people really saw how hard it was to come up with a 100…you had to think outside the box! When working with groups, we’ll call the game “100 uses for…” but give them only 5 minutes! The prompt can be pizza, a log, or something more relevant. When doing a workshop with our friends at KeyMe, we used the prompt “100 uses for a key” to get people thinking about their challenge.

2. Mix and Match (fruit party)

Fruit party is a fun game that can be used to teach a variety of innovation themes, from the importance of generation and combinatory innovation to the idea of there being “no bad ideas.”

Team members each choose a fruit, with no duplicates. I’ve played this game with 15-50 and it works well in both cases. I then have people arrange themselves by various criterion – color, size, cost then by flavor. I’ll then select three or four people, representing different fruits and ask what fruit mix they are. Sometimes the combination sounds good, sometimes it doesn’t! Each time I ask what useful purpose the combination can make.

3. Generate and Share

Groups always want to talk first…I just don’t let them! The simplicity of this game is that you provide the generation template – full size paper, post-its, how many elements each concept needs to have, etc.

“100 uses for…” is a generate and share game. People don’t call out ideas, they write them down! And we give rules, like one post-it per idea and ideas with words AND pictures are better.  Deciding what you want the team to generate and then making a simple template for it is an easy way to get started.

4. Always/Never

I use this with teams all the time as way to clarify their thinking on an issue. A team was having a discussion about the new employee onboarding process and was getting bogged down trying to generate features, workflows and concepts. Giving them 5 minutes to generate and share what the onboarding process should “always be like” and then generating what it should “never be like” made a clear visual word and concept map that sparked features, workflows and concepts more easily.

5. Franken Ideation

When teams have generated ideas or concepts, mixing and matching is a great way to get them to go further. Fruit Party can teach the principles of this, but doing a round of Franken Ideation can help them dig deeper. Have each team member grab 2-3 post-its representing ideas or concepts from the wall, and to not think too much about which ones. What will combining these ideas give us?

Once, during a color-generating teaching exercise, a participant took “Green Sweater” and “Campfire Orange” to make “Singed Wool”. This process based mixing is creatively different from literally mixing these two colors…and far more creative! Doing this with more high level ideas is hard, but will get your team to unique ideas. Remember, even bad ideas can be good ideas if we look at them right!

We teach a facilitation bootcamp about once a month that touches on these topics and gives context and practice to these techniques.

Links for further learning:

LEGO Serious Play

Design Games

Innovation Games

Finite and Infinite Games

Gamestorming

The Systems thinking Playbook

Five Games for Creativity

1. 100 uses for…

We often use “100 uses for…” as a way to get creative juices going and sometimes to prime a team to tackle a challenge. When I was in design school, one of my professors had a “100 ways to serve pizza” assignment. Everyone was given a pack of 100 paper plates and had to draw a serious or silly way of serving pizza. That was a week-long assignment, and people really saw how hard it was to come up with a 100…you had to think outside the box! When working with groups, we’ll call the game “100 uses for…” but give them only 5 minutes! The prompt can be pizza, a log, or something more relevant. When doing a workshop with our friends at KeyMe, we used the prompt “100 uses for a key” to get people thinking about their challenge.

2. Mix and Match (fruit party)

Fruit party is a fun game that can be used to teach a variety of innovation themes, from the importance of generation and combinatory innovation to the idea of there being “no bad ideas.”

Team members each choose a fruit, with no duplicates. I’ve played this game with 15-50 and it works well in both cases. I then have people arrange themselves by various criterion—color, size, cost, then by flavor. I’ll then select three or four people, representing different fruits and ask what fruit mix they are. Sometimes the combination sounds good, sometimes it doesn’t! Each time I ask what useful purpose the combination can make.

3. Generate and Share

Groups always want to talk first…I just don’t let them! The simplicity of this game is that you provide the generation template—full size paper, post-its, how many elements each concept needs to have, etc.

“100 uses for…” is a generate and share game. People don’t call out ideas, they write them down! And we give rules, like one post-it per idea and ideas with words AND pictures are better. Deciding what you want the team to generate and then making a simple template for it is an easy way to get started.

4. Always/Never

I use this with teams all the time as way to clarify their thinking on an issue. A team was having a discussion about the new employee onboarding process and was getting bogged down trying to generate features, workflows and concepts. Giving them 5 minutes to generate and share what the onboarding process should “always be like” and then generating what it should “never be like” made a clear visual word and concept map that sparked features, workflows and concepts more easily.

5. Franken Ideation

When teams have generated ideas or concepts, mixing and matching is a great way to get them to go further. Fruit Party can teach the principles of this, but doing a round of Franken Ideation can help them dig deeper. Have each team member grab 2-3 post-its representing ideas or concepts from the wall, and to not think too much about which ones. What will combining these ideas give us?

Once, during a color-generating teaching exercise, a participant took “Green Sweater” and “Campfire Orange” to make “Singed Wool.” This process-based mixing is creatively different from literally mixing these two colors…and far more creative! Doing this with more high level ideas is hard, but will get your team to unique ideas. Remember, even bad ideas can be good ideas if we look at them right!

We teach a facilitation bootcamp that touches on these topics and gives context and practice to these techniques. Sign up for an upcoming bootcamp to learn more!

 

 

What Is a Studio Project?

A place to practice, A safe environment, A real case study, One-on-one coaching, and accelerated insights.

Research, Synthesis, Insights, Strategy and Great Ideas. It’s something we’re all asked to do nearly every day at our jobs. At The Design Gym, we’ve been teaching the design thinking process to companies and individuals for more than 2 years…and we’ve found that 2-hour workshops and one-day bootcamps are fun, inspirational and transformative…but that people still can struggle with taking this way of working back to their daily job. We’ve been experimenting for the last year and a half with various formats and ways of engaging people with this empathic and dynamic way of innovating. The Studio project is our best way of getting people to work through the design thinking process in real time with a real challenge. Over the course of 5-8 sessions, we take a cohort of professionals from research to insights and from insights to solutions.

The next Studio Project is coming up in July…sign up here!

We are committed to enrolling unique and fascinating companies for these projects. We’ve had the pleasure of working with some pretty diverse challenges – from rethinking lunch with Applegate to rethinking social networks with Mozilla! The results, both from the company perspective and the student perspective, have been really exciting!

 

Student Perspectives: Real world practice and experience

 

jessica“I’m excited about applying the [design thinking] process to a real project. It’s tough to get that sort of practice when you’re not doing it in your daily job”

Jessica Martin, Innovation associate

Acumen

 

 

sally

 

“I was always really craving to do it, as opposed to just learn about it… a 2-hour class where we just have some fun with sticky notes!

I love that we’re really working with a client and we get to try to really solve a real-world problem”

Sally Hall, Development Officer

GMHC

 

Client Perspectives: Real Time Open Innovation

From the perspective of our clients, The Studio Project looks and feels like real-time, open innovation.

 

Applegate is constantly looking for ways to connect with consumers, to both learn and to educate. The opportunity to access a diverse, unbiased group of motivated thinkers was irresistible.  The result of our partnership with The Design Gym was clear and unexpected insights from real people that were thoughtfully distilled into concise ideas and actions.

As our consumers continue to inspire us, innovation will remain a primary goal at Applegate and we look forward to collaborating with The Design Gym again.

Tiffany Gale, Digital and Social Media Manager

Applegate, Studio Project Client, Winter 2014

Download the Applegate Studio Project Case Study Here

The Design Gym process allowed us to better understand our problem and users, while leading us to many awesome ideas and solutions. Besides being a fun and extremely valuable workshop, I met a wonderful group of enthusiastic and smart people. I definitely recommend a collaboration with The Design Gym and their team of “solvers” on your next project!

Holly Habstritt, UX Lead

Mozilla, Studio Project Client, Winter 2012

Download the Mozilla Studio Project Case Study Here

 

If you spend more time with your staff than you do with your customers, if you enjoy feeling naked (Watch at minute 2!) in front of people…you’ll enjoy being the company challenge at the center of The Studio Project.

The next Studio Project is coming up in July…sign up here!

 

What’s going on in Chile? 

One thing we’re really proud of here at The Design Gym is that we’re a community driven organization. Looking back, it’s pretty clear that everything we’ve built has been done with input and participation of a core community that believes in what we’re doing and is willing to pitch in to make it happen.

Two years ago, someone said that the Weekend Workouts would go more smoothly if we addressed group dynamics more directly and had a facilitator for each team. So we invited people from the previous weekend workouts to come back and help fill that space. It changed the dynamics of the workshop…for the better!

About a year ago, a former client and community volunteer Gabrielle Santa-Donato came to us and pitched Startup Chile to us. Would we be interested to see if there is a global need for project-based design thinking education? Would we help her apply to the six-month accelerator in our name?

A few months later, Gabrielle and Daniel Stillman (one of the co-founders of The Design Gym) were headed to Santiago, Chile. Gabrielle for six months, Daniel for one. Now, this July, Andy Hagerman, another founder, and community facilitators  Nidhi Chaudhary and Justine Lai are heading down to Santiago for a month to help kick-start a multi-week training program to build local community facilitators to keep The Design Gym going after the StartUp Chile program ends.

We’re lucky…we’re a small organization and we can move fast and make small bets. Design Thinking isn’t just theoretical for us…we’re practicing what we’re preaching and so excited to see what comes out of this awesome experiment.

Visual Thinking Resources

Visual Thinking, as you all know, makes you an automatic Ninja. Being able to express your ideas visually makes them more impactful, and more memorable. It’s worth getting better at! That’s one of the reasons we have a Visual Thinking Happy Hour each month, and it’s always fun…but we wanted to make it easy for anyone to recreate the experience anytime, anywhere. We’ve taken what we’ve learned from these sessions and turned them into a sweet, sweet deck of large-format cards for you to play with.

Download the Visual Workpack PDF for $5

Some great resources on the value of doodling and sketching can be found here, in an Ignite talk given by Sunni Brown. It’s only five minutes and totally awesome.

If you want to know the basics, the DNA of drawing, take a gander at Sunni’s Visual Alphabet, here.

Another take is here, from Sunni’s collaborator Dave Gray. It’s really visual AND conceptual…and kinematic! So it’s awesome, basically. At 6:55, Dave discusses some of the finer points of perspective, including why axonometric perspective is awesome.

Some books that are awesome about sketching and visual thinking that I really love:

See What I Mean: How to Use Comics to Communicate Ideas
by Kevin Cheng

Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art
by Scott McCloud

The Back of the Napkin: Solving Problems and Selling Ideas with Pictures
by Dan Roam

Sketching is a muscle that gets stronger the more you use it. And just like any skill, it’s highly personal and individual. Getting good at a few basic shapes and items can go a long way to helping you express your ideas quickly to others…and yourself! And see for yourself (here) how simple pictures can tell a great story.

Take a look at this video about rapid sketching…and clothespin man!

Don’t forget: If you don’t write it down (or draw it) it didn’t happen.

 

Timeboxing and Artifact Making

Right smack in the middle of this video is some solid working-style advice. When I’m truly stuck, I use it. Chunking my day up into blocks, taking out my cellphone and timing those blocks and *not cheating* really helps. The pomodoro technique is one way to do it (there are tons of smartphone apps to help!) But when I’m designing workshops for others to go through I timebox even more assiduously. I’ll break a 2 hour workshop into 5 minute chunks in an excel document I use to track and sum up the time blocks so I know it all adds up. And with each chunk, I ask myself what each person and team will be making, seeing or sharing at each inflection point. That’s one reason why we make so many worksheets here at Design Gym central…getting people to write down their insights on paper can help create clarity and consensus where it seemed impossible a few minutes before. When teams have done their initial research phase and have taken the time to organize and visualize what it all means, we ask people to take a step back and fill out an “insights mad lib”

We thought _______ But we saw _______ Now we realize _____

I’ve used a few variations on that over time, depending on my mood and the goals of the exercise. Often I’ll ask teams to add a visual diagram of their insight. The point is, teams feel all over the place, like they need more time to agree on what they really learned. But when I ask them to sit down and work alone for 5 minutes on their own insights, when they share them out to each other, there is always amazing overlap. Taking the time to timebox and create an artifact will always move the conversation forward and help us see where we are. More time to think and talk seems like a great idea, but taking time to make things is essential.

How to become a learning organization

 

DonorsChoose.org is ranked year after year as one of the most innovative organizations in the world. We think their insatiable curiosity and willingness to learn is a tremendous contributing factor. The best companies are learning constantly in an effort to push their creative capabilities and grow. We had the privilege to partner with DonorsChoose.org to help them in their efforts to stay inspired. Last December we took their partnerships and business development team on an inspiration field trip, visiting The Union Square Hospitality Group and TED.

How can a non-profit learn from a restaurant group and a global learning platform? The process and the tools we used are outlined below…

Step One: Visualize the challenge

When gathering inspiration it’s hard to know exactly where or how interesting nuggets of information might be applied back to your organization or role.  Instead of beginning with a single written challenge or research brief, have your team (or just you) visualize the challenge and all the areas where new inspiration can help.  Thinking visually allows us to look at many  areas of the problem at once and helps your team align on what your most essential challenge is.

Sketching for 5 minutes and then sharing your work and looking for overlaps and key points for 5 minutes for each sketch can really help your team get clear on where you should focus your efforts. (And your sketches don’t have to be pretty to be useful!)

Step Two: Go Outside your walls

Once you’re more clear on what areas of your business could use an infusion of new thinking, where the open questions are, go wide in assessing industries, organizations or consumer groups where some great ideas might come from.  A world-class restaurant group was not the most obvious choice for a not-for-profit supporting public school teachers. Union Square Hospitality values service and relationships like few other companies. When you look past the exterior, Donors Choose.org found a wealth of inspiration from Union Square’s guiding principles.

Choosing where to go and how much time and money to budget shouldn’t be a huge barrier. Our low barrier research method sheet helped us focus our efforts in the most time effective ways.

Download the Low Barrier Method Sheet

When you send a group of people into the world, it’s essential to have their eyes trained in similar ways.

The A-E-I-O-U observation framework can help a team share an observation language, which can help them share observations when they debrief. (Note – we didn’t invent the framework…we just love it!)

Download the Observation Template

Step Three: A Willingness to Build

Once you’ve gone out into the world, had compelling conversations and learned from new perspectives, now what?  As a team you want to debrief what was heard (We promise everyone heard something slightly different), organize your insights and questions, and think about where these  insights can apply to your initial challenge sketch.

What can you prototype? How can you put these ideas into action? As members of your  team are proposing how to connect certain ideas back to your business look to build on concepts with additions or tweaks. Say “Yes, And” (the first rule of improvisation!)…  Allow your team to be generative first, then organize and prioritize options. This generative process will allow for the development of concepts that no single individual owns, but are based on the needs and ideas of the entire group.

Being a Learning organization doesn’t mean having  a big budget or a huge amount of  time.  Like DonorsChoose.org the most innovative companies are continually out in the world (to steal a phrase from Danny Meyer) “collecting and connecting dots”.  I hope this simple flow can give your team the inspiration to get out there and gather some new perspectives.  And if you’d like some help getting started, we’re happy to help.

If working *inside* is more your speed: Download our Workshop Offerings

Design Thinking Weekend Workout with the Brooklyn Brainery

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The Design Gym is a community at the intersection of learning and creative problem solving. We bring together classes of diverse professionals to work on projects of aspirational organizations – learning by doing. This month’s weekend workout focused on the challenges faced by the Brooklyn Brainery as they plan a new offering outside their wonderful four walls.

Below are four videos and summaries of the insights each team delivered after just one day of work, along with feedback from the Brainery Staff.

The right process and amazing people is an irresistible combination! Photos from the day are at the bottom, too…

Thanks to all the amazing people who came out to the workshop and the Brooklyn Brainery for spending your sunday thinking about the future of your business.

 

Retention Expansion Strategy:

Overview:

We want to launch a community membership program that allows people to progress from a one time student to a teacher within the community. Each time a new community member takes a class they are given two cards. One is a card that acts as a tracker for progression in the community and as a way to know how the most devoted members are. The other acts as a promotional card that can be given to a friend, and gives them 20% off their first Adventure Club trip.

As people continue to take more classes they work their way through different levels, gaining access to new opportunities and benefits. A new community member would begin as a Novice, progress to an Explorer and finally become a Dundee.

 

Brooklyn Brainery Feedback:
I like that it takes an informal behavior that’s already happening (people beginning as students and becoming teachers) and begin to formalize it. We have a lot of instructors who both take classes and teach classes, this would give structure and a clear progression to that.

 

The Real Little Italy Concept:

 

Overview:

Experts who love their neighborhood and have a rich knowledge of its history and culture can share what they know with a greater audience. For example many people don’t know that the original Little Italy is actually in the Bronx. Helen has a great deal of knowledge about the people and establishments in the neighborhood that have made it what it is and a desire to share this knowledge with others.

 

Brooklyn Brainery Feedback:
I love the idea of engaging new people who just happen to know and love sharing a great deal about their neighborhood. Even just sitting down at a bar and hearing their stories could be really interesting.

 

Creating Comfort in Adventure:

 

Overview:

Utilize the already existing brand to create social circles of people who want to connect throughout New York City, based on where they live. During these happy hour’s they will connect with teachers who are local to the area in which they live.

This first meeting is a one time experience to create comfort for people who might be intimidated to go out somewhere with people they’ve never met before and introduce them to this new concept.

Use instructors they already know to keep something familiar and show examples during the Happy Hour of what different excursions might look like.

 

Brooklyn Brainery Feedback:
I like the idea of a mixture between the known and unknown. Grabbing pictures allows people to know what the experience may be like but also allows us to catalogue all these experiences.

 

Financial Flexibility: 

 

Overview:
People new to the city are going to have different amounts of time freedom and flexibility; we believe that payment options should also be flexible to accommodate different varying schedules. Single event based pricing for those that can only make an event or two per month, with an option for a monthly payment that gives them access to a variety of events each month.

In addition to the financial flexibility, another benefit would be an email sent to each attendee before the event takes place. This email covers who else has already signed up for this event, a quick blurb about them and some points of common interest amongst the group to spark conversation.

 

Brooklyn Brainery Feedback: 
“My favorite thing about this, is getting the email upfront that says this is who is going to be at the event and that the email comes after you’ve already signed up. It allows you to know who will be there without selecting purely based on that”.

 

Photos from the weekend:

Design Thinking Bootcamp

The Design Gym is a community at the intersection of learning and creative problem solving. We bring together classes of diverse professionals to work on projects of aspirational organizations – learning by doing. We recently did one focused on airbnb, because we think it’s a pretty rad company, and our students were pumped to work on their problem for a day.

HOW IT WORKS
One day, a doctor, an ad executive, and a design student go out to lunch together to learn about the state of hospitality (no…seriously). This is how it goes down over the course of a full-day:

 

THE OUTCOMES

Each team refined their insights, sourced from their interviews and issues maps, pushed through prototypes, storyboards and iterative testing over the course of the afternoon. Each team presented a vision for AirBnB going forward:

– Air Home & Hood – an online service that allows home renters and buyers to test out a neighborhood or city before fully committing to making the move. It’s complete with a neighborhood guide matching system.

– AirBnB KEY – an iPhone app that unlocks the world. Just grab your keys, wallet, and phone, and go. Through a new hardware device, users can unlock their Airbnb rentals conveniently, and through partnerships are able to easily access rental services and currency exchanges.

– Airbnb +plus – An add on service that allows users to supplement their home rental with services such as cleaning, local guides, recreational equipment, and even a weekend pet.

– Airbnb Experiences – People search endlessly to get an authentic experience or have a serendipitous encounter with locals – why not make that easier? Airbnb experiences connects travelers with local communities and people to break bread, explore the town, and build empathy far beyond the normal travel book’s recommendations.

Street Research Insights

How do you get inside the head of your customer? What really motivates them, and how do you reach them where they are?

Our current answer is a dual-learning model. We bring companies we’ve trained in design thinking together with people who are also training in design thinking to collaborate on insights.

Applegate Farms works with us to develop a more agile and autonomous atmosphere of innovation. Coming to this workshop to get insights about their customers and products (instead of paying a consultancy to tell them what to do) is one way they’re changing their culture.

This class had three phases:

1. Workshop One: The Company and the Class interact, exchanging information and framing the challenge.

2. Field Work: The Class goes out into the world and does low-barrier ethnography – one-on-one interviews, shadows, intercepts.

3. Workshop Two: The Class comes back with their user research and synthesizes it, pitching back their findings .

Why should this company listen to these people? Firstly, they were an astounding assortment of people, that any company would want to have in their corner. They work in the Mayor’s office, as business consultants to the mental health industry, VPs at ad agencies, doctors and teachers. Secondly, they were able to bring in about 50 user profile data points – far more on-the-ground insight than most market research firms can complete in the same time frame.

 

The first group focused on interviewing families while grocery shopping and at the butchers. They thought that health would drive decisions more than they heard from their interviews. They pointed out that taste and quality of the product were more important than labels and brand.

The Second group peered into the extremes: A Key Foods in Bushwick and the Dean and Deluca store in SoHo. What they found was a hazy middle section of consumers. Sandwiched in between the extremely informed and those who don’t want to be informed are a large segment of people who know some buzzwords and know they “should” care more than they act on.  What will get this “twilight zone” of people into the more active region of engaged customers? Ethics and health played a role, but very few do research before going into the store. Their data and insights sorted on ‘hyper-informed vs. disengaged’ by location is pretty interesting.

Group Three felt that some buzzwords fell into the noise…they look at ingredients, and want to compare items in the store, where it seems that many purchasing decisions are being made. Applegate products should be placed side by side with other products to allow users to see the better ingredients and healthier product that Applegate provides.

Group Four insights included the recognition of “single” issue voters on food, and that labels needed to have information as clear as possible in order to win them over.