Improving the Lives of Others
Software agencies purpose is to build products for their clients, which in turn will generate cash flow for the client by either attracting customers or assisting employees. An agency generally has a funnel of leads and a regimented selection criterion of which customers to follow up with. After hundreds of calls, an Agency will fall into a cadence which attracts a specific "type" of customer. Over time we have found that these questions are the most important way to determine who is a valid customer to work with:
Will the Client treat the Agency like a partner?
Do the clients sell products to that help people positively?
Is the CEO or sole decision maker part of the daily decisions in the product?
But one of the most important aspects we analyze has nothing to do with the customer. We attempt to understand the end users. There are only two people in the world that are labeled as users and that is software users and drug addicts. It can be a dirty industry as the notification bubbles and addicting sounds constantly bring its user back to the device converting each swipe to a dopamine rush. As a software agency it is very important that we understand the intentions of our clients and how the product will be used in someone's daily life.
From the author of Hooked and Indistractable the manipulation matrix is a simple decision support tool to determine if the software products we are all building can "hook" the users and more importantly, should we?
To use the Manipulation Matrix, the maker needs to ask two questions. First, "Will I use the product myself?" and second, "Will the product help users materially improve their lives?"
Using the Manipulation Matrix at an Agency
Nir has provided us with a simple decision support tool for us to understand, during a customer call, a way to ask "Are our clients trying to hook their users?" and more importantly, "Should we help them do that?"
This does not mean that if we are trying to determine if the business that intends to hire us is moral or potentially successful, rather it gives us guidance on our abilities to live with ourselves by the end of the day when we claim "we built that."
We have built a very intentionally addicting application that is based on clinically proven methods of forming a habit. However, the habit was for better sleep, nutrition, water intake and overall health - plus the makers user it today! This "Facilitator" has become a life changing experience for hundred of thousands of "users" and we were glad to be a part of it.
You can find more of our products at 923 Digital here
If you want to read the explanation for each section in the matrix you can find it here