Storyboards

35 prog-storyboards

Storyboards are a graphic representation of how a user will interact with a product or service, made up of a series of pictures with accompanying text. Storyboards provide an easy and quick way of gathering feedback on ideas early in the design process.

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Related Mindset:

Experience

Segment:

Program

Inputs:

Inputs to storyboard creation include personas to define the primary characters and a journey map to understand their pain points. Strategic themes, ideas, and Epics may all influence the content included in the storyboard.

Outputs:

The storyboard is the output of the activity, made up of a series of illustrations that convey step-by-step interactions with a product or service.

A storyboard is a series of images depicting interactions to tell the story of a user’s intended experience interacting with a product or service.

It keeps the focus on the experiential flow during the design process, instead of listing features and functionality. Storyboards bring users to life while keeping focus on tasks and behavior by including real-world contextual information. They are easy to explore and iterate, complement personas and journey maps, and help identify more detailed use cases and feature sets.

The basic fundamentals of a story include 3 elements to shape the storyboard:

  1. Character(s) who consume a service or are the user(s) of a product, as defined by personas and/or archetypes.
  2. Conflict may come from a customer journey map by drawing on existing pain points or articulate a problem that a new product/feature is aiming to solve.
  3. Goals provide the motivation a character needs to overcome the conflict and engage with the product.

Storyboards can be used to tell different types of stories about a product or a service such as:

  • Communicating a concept to give a big picture overview of a product
  • Illustrating how a user becomes a customer for the first time
  • Depicting how a user engages with a product or service to accomplish a goal or task

Common Pitfalls

Storyboards are an effective communication tool to envision how users may interact with a product or service.

By understanding their intended use, teams should be able to avoid some of these challenges:

  • Not an exhaustive tool: Storyboards are a great tool to keep discussions focused on people and their goals in an appropriate context. They aren’t intended to be an exhaustive tool to map scenarios.
  • Cumbersome when complex: Because storyboards are typically created with hand-drawn illustrations, repeating scenarios or focusing on details of a UI can be difficult to create efficiently.
  • Not just linking UI designs together: To maximize the value in creating a storyboard, contextual information should be included, not just a series of screens or elements.

Tools

Storyboarding tools should be easy to use and enable quick, iterative sketching.

The following may be useful: