How to communicate a use case?

If you have a product, how is it used? Is it use it all yet? Sometimes I wonder if people don’t understand what I am doing with this app, because I don’t see too many people using it on Twitter. 5.1 with its brilliant new Twitter implementation ought to fix that on a user flow level, but perhaps I haven’t done a good enough job of communicating exactly why you should tweet out audio.

There are only a few ways that people start using new software. The most powerful of these is what I label “monkey see monkey do” – user sees another user getting value out of the nap, and wants to get it for themselves. We built a lot of that into the app and platform of Tinyvox already.

But what if nobody’s getting any value out of it is all right now? Clearly, if you are getting value out of something and others are not, either you are an aberration or you have not made yourself “imitable”. That is, are you getting value out of it that a mainstream user would if they followed a few short, simple instructions?

Certain product packaging for consumer goods displays “suggested uses” on the label. Clearly this is a parallel to what I am going to build today. If the product is fairly fast in usage, you shouldn’t leave it to chance that people will discover how they could use it on their own. You probably already have a list of how people can use it, so start creating content around the various elements of that list and you will connect through SCO and viral marketing every time you hit the spot with the usage that connects with somebody. Make sure you ask them to share!

The first constraint on communicating a use case is clearly attention span. I use it, unless absolutely fascinated or in profound need of solving problem, may only give you about a minute of time to communicate your suggested use.

Some use cases depend on multiple users. For instance, a walkie-talkie usage of Tinyvox Ward ideally involved to people with iPhones and Tinyvox on each end. They would exchange MP3 messages with one another regardless of constraint on needing to have the app. You would need an app on your end in order to send a message, but not to receive one.

Maybe I could make a video of this nugget? Clearly, the first step in communicating getting a use case is talking out the flow.

But why would two friends want to exchange MP3 communications with one another? Perhaps they are in love and want to send each other clever little voice mails. But why wouldn’t they just do that over the telephone? Maybe they are overseas from one another and telephone calls are expensive.

Clearly listing alternatives to your new proposed solution can give you powerful positioning. Unlike a telephone call, sending a Tinyvox tape does not require the other person to be on call for you. Unlike a voice mail, you can talk as long as you want with the Tinyvox tape, even interviewing another person so as to create two people communicating to one person through time and space.

You create content to promote an alternative, and you must therefore highlight the deficiencies in your competition. Other alternatives are not as smooth or powerful, and you need to talk about this. The hard part is being negative about other people’s technology, but that’s the way the cookie crumbles. You must convince your reader that there is no alternative to Tinyvox. Without it, silence prevails on your profile. The silence of oblivion, as if you did not exist.


About tinyvox

The Social Tape Deck
This entry was posted in experiments, publicity, reasons, user experience. Bookmark the permalink.

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