November 16, 2022

Great product development starts at the WHAT, and extends to the WHY!

Pay Attention

Companies make the mistake of creating products that users don't need.

If your software product doesn't solve painful problems, it doesn't need to exist.

Many things don't need to be made.

But, if you’re going to make something, pay attention to all the experiences your customer will go through!

Start Mapping

Map out the entire journey of a user.

Your product isn't just a product, it's the whole user experience. Customers see it all. They're the ones taking the journey.

Most companies ignore the parts of the customer journey that are not sexy.

As a product designer, you must map out the entire journey of a user...


• How will they discover your product?
• How will they consider your product?
• How will your installation process work?
• What are the steps to onboard a user?
• What do you do when someone cancels?

Prototype as much of the customer experience as possible – even the less “showy” parts of the journey.

Your Company is ALL the Things

Your company is not the product.

Your company is a collection of ALL the things: your web app, mobile app, advertising, messaging, mastermind groups, colors + branding, etc.

All the experiences your customer goes through is your company: product, marketing, support.

Pay attention. Execute well on each part. Create a single customer journey.

Move Your Customer Naturally

Overcome the moments of friction.

Each user needs answers:

  • Why should I care?
  • Why should I use it?
  • Why should I stick with it?
  • Why should I buy additional modules?

The goal for each phase is to move your customer naturally on to the next phase.

Detailed Mocks

To get this right, you must prototype the entire customer journey.

Create detailed mockups illustrating how a customer moves from an advertisement to submitting their information for a demo, to sending documents for onboarding and implementation.

Our user journey moves from a detailed demo, to initializing personalized data into the application.


At PZM, we use "one-line diagrams" to map a utility's information into our app.

A one-line diagram is a simple way to show the major equipment in an electrical substation and how the equipment is connected. It uses standard symbols and naming conventions. The simple representation makes it useful for switching, troubleshooting, and analyzing complex electrical distribution systems.

One-lines are essential for electric utility asset management software because understanding the structure is crucial to implementing the data correctly.

Real Data

Using actual data from one-line diagrams is part of our customer's journey with PZM.

We have a 100% close rate when using real, customer data within the PZM app.

Electric utilities understand their specific data and protection zones within PZM. This helps them visualize and interact with our application in a way they couldn't with mock data. They can use PZM for their electrical substation inspections.

It does take longer to initialize this data into PZM, but the benefits outweigh the costs.

Don't Make Users Think

Creating an experience where the technology gets out of the way is crucial to great product design and delighting users.

Combining who your audience is and what they need is the secret.

Deliver superpowers to your users, without requiring technical expertise is essential.

At PZM, users can generate inspection reports for auditors and insurance companies with one click.

Design for Use

Strategically design your company's technology.

In most cases, your web app & mobile app should not be the same – our web and mobile app display different user actions and information.

Complex data reports are hard to read on smaller mobile screens, and should be solved with a web app.

PZM’s mobile app is designed specifically for field technicians to complete their work in a timely and intuitive fashion.

3 Versions

Making and correcting mistakes takes leadership.

Building compelling and remarkable products for your customers takes effort. Sometimes it takes three versions to get something right.

Shipping and learning through customer feedback is a proven method of designing products to reflect real-world data, not simply the opinions of the founders.

Explain. Create.

Great product development starts at the WHAT, and extends to the WHY!

Many companies wait until the end of product development to summarize what it does and why it's important for users.

Explain the product. Create a narrative that relates to people's lives.

Continually communicate and connect with customers – they're the ones taking the journey!