It’s all about ART!

I don’t mean the art you’re thinking of but that can be a nice metaphor. A museum clearly thinks about how to present a new collection to its patrons. Recently a client asked me to review the beta version of their mobile app. When I looked at the proposed format, I quickly realized this app was being made in response to their competitors and not for their patrons. The app mimicked the features of the competition and it was not suited for the majority of the client’s unique audience.

It is so important to understand how your audience uses technology before designing convenience apps. This business seemed to forget that their audience is mainly attracted to their niche. There were no niche functions in the application. Gone were the detailed explanations of their services, gone were the connections to a personalized guide.

I gave an honest review. Don’t worry, I was pleasant. First, I shared how great it looked! You need to do this. It’s sort of like telling your friend that her hair looks great before breaking the news about the dress! Start positive then get to the root of it. I suggested they follow the ART process. ART is an acronym I coined, probably because of my background, to remind me of the order in which new media should be conceived. I say should but we all know this rarely happens the first time! Often a new media plan happens after the initial efforts fall flat.


  • Whom are we trying to reach?
  • What do they find unique about us?
  • What problem, which matters to them, do we want to solve?

ROI (return on investment)

  • What will we gain from taking on this expense?
  • Will it cost us more than we gain?


  • How does our audience use technology?
  • What medium makes sense, to them?
  • If they don’t use it, can we re-purpose the technology?

Know your audience, assess the ROI of creating new media for this segment, then and only then choose the technology that will best suite your audience. The point is, if your business is a work of art and serves a niche population; your app should enhance that niche.

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