The Concept Canvas

A FREE DIY framework for digital teams wanting to ensure they're solving the RIGHT problem, the RIGHT way when creating and experimenting with new products or features.

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From waterfalls to experiments

Do we really need yet a-n-o-t-h-e-r framework? Seriously? Let's take a look at where we've been, where we are and where we're going as an industry for a bit of perspective.

Past

Back in the day (1950's to 2000), we developed software by following the trusty systems development life cycle method (colloquially known as waterfall). It was highly structured and work was carried out in discrete stages, however it was just too rigid and didn't cope well when project conditions, markets or end-users required change.

Present

In modern times (2000's to today), we've adopted more agile, highly iterative methods to develop software that allows for increased flexibility and change. This better reflects modern market conditions. We've seen different flavours of agile, lean UX, design thinking and more. We can now rapidly execute projects and turn on a dime.

Future

Fast foward to today (and beyond), it's no longer a sustainable competitive advantage to have the most efficient delivery methods. The "secret sauce" will come down to how well companies create new opportunities, out-innovate the competition, and delight new and existing customers via their ability to rapidly experiment and test new ideas.

Design and science unite

Such a perfect union. Design brings creativity and possibilities. Science brings rigour around experimentation and validation. The Concept Canvas combines the best of both worlds by capitalising on hypothesis-driven design.

1

Hypothesise

Begin by (re)framing your problem or opportunity as a how might we question. This becomes your central hypothesis.

2

Experiment

Use ideation tools to explore solution ideas. Differentiate between them and run experiments to validate (or invalidate) each.

3

Learn

Evaluate which concepts work best. Combine or discard where necessary and capture what's been learnt.

🎂 There's more than one way to bake a cake 🎂

Even the most popular solutions are based on UNIQUE underlying concepts within their respective industries. The Concept Canvas encourages you to create and experiment with these different possibilities. Here are some common examples...



Music streaming


Spotify

Subscription-based model with an emphasis on social features such as sharing, subscribing and collaborating on playlists with friends.


YouTube Music

Free streaming service centred around music videos on YouTube based on genres, playlists, and recommendations.


Tidal

Targets users who are fanatical about superior audio quality. Pays the highest percentage of royalties to music artists and songwriters.



Dating apps


Tinder

Built entirely around an innovative swiping motion: swipe right to like a profile or left to dislike. If both swipe right, parties are matched and have the opportunity to chat.


Bumble

Differentiates itself by allowing female users to initiate the first contact with matched male users (for heterosexual relationships).


OkCupid

Focusses on helping users get to know each other via multiple-choice questions and storytelling to facilitate better quality matches.



Ridesharing services


Uber

Pioneered a convenient alternative to taxis by using technology to match passengers with drivers. Want a ride? Press a button & watch your driver make their way to you.


Hop

Drivers use rental cars from Hertz as their ridesharing vehicle. Drivers also secure a guaranteed hourly rate and don't need to pay commission on fares.


Shebah

Targets women and children only and has a strong emphasis on comfort and safety. They may even allow pets in certain circumstances ;)

Are you on the right trajectory?

The Concept Canvas can also help you determine whether the investment in time, finances & resources for your project will be well spent. Explore all your solution options and arrive at one that has the best chance of succeeding.

Consider, minimise and potentially eliminate solution risks prior to delivery.

Understand the specifics of a solution before any heavylifting.

Explore new, untapped value for customers and the organisation.

Gather evidence and learnings to support a business case or showcase to stakeholders.

Want to fast-track your concept discovery efforts?

Book our 1 day Concept Discovery Workshop aimed at helping your product team generate numerous solution alternatives for testing.

Book now

Complementary to existing frameworks

The Concept Canvas has been designed to complement existing frameworks, not replace them.

Double 
Diamond

Design 
Thinking

Lean 
Canvas

Business Model 
Canvas

Google Design 
Sprint

The Concept Canvas is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International license

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