OTA 2013 – 5 year Reflection

Over The Air is coming around again – so time to think about what I will bring to the party this year. It is one of the few annual events highlighted in my calendar (other than birthdays!), so unlike most people, who reflect around the start of a new year, my point of reflection is Over the Air!

So it started me thinking, how far has my campaign to put users at the centre of technology been going? Did I succeed in my personal mission to be entertaining and insightful?

OTA 2009 – Yes, I am right, technologists realised they were not engaging users early and often enough (and also are up for a bit of fun!)

Panel photoAt OTA 2009 I got to further test out an idea that I had been toying with by putting a panel of young people on stage to offer their reviews of a number of products that were pitched to them. The feedback I got certainly proved the point I set out to make:

“…These teens are giving the best hints on marketing and product development I’ve heard in a while…strong feeling people are better at presenting their new technology rather than the benefits and users of it…better than venture capitalists when it comes to grilling the presenters…”

Here is a link to the full report I wrote under the banner of “The Digital Youth Project” collating input from a number of panels and pieces of client work, pre and post OTA 2009:

OTA 2010 – Product Doctor Surgeries are launched

By OTA 2010, I had moved on to establish a new name: “Product Doctor” (good story as to how that came about which you can ask me about some time!) and in keeping with the title, offered up Drop In Surgeries for the first time. One on one consultations with walkaway prescriptions. Found to be useful by patients, I have repeated that each year and each year I write up my findings.

Product Doctor Surgery, OTA 2011, courtesy of Paul ClarkeOTA 2011 – Surgeries prove popular – advice areas seems to become repetitive

As I was writing up the output, I seemed to be giving advice around the same areas, so I decided it would be a good idea to write a “how to” guide.

OTA 2012 – Patients are given a DIY User Engagement guide this time


During the Summer of 2012, I was asked by UCL Advances and Mobile Monday London, to put together an evening programme with industry experts teaching business, design and need-to-know aspects of technology over a 10 week period for people that are developing new ideas. Yes! My campaign could continue – best practice is of course, user-centred design, and over the past two programmes, I have turned the guide in to a series of practical “how to” sessions, that have been well received by the participants. Our 3rd certified CPD programme runs from 1st October – 3rd December – book here: http://moblacad-2013-10-01-JS.eventbrite.com)

OTA 2013 – DIY User Engagement becomes a practical “how to…” session, oh and of course, Product Doctor Surgeries are on offer again…

  • Session: Friday Morning time TBC.
  • Surgeries: Friday Afternoon: 14.30 – 19.30

For OTA this year, I am going to deliver a session that pulls on the material I have created for The Mobile Academy; it is an interactive demonstration on how to get user feedback – doing it yourself.  Starting with the why and moving to the when and what: this session will show you how to engage users to test out early stage concepts, get feedback on how you look, help you prioritise your feature lists and to work through how usable your product is.

1) Do you have a product I can use as a Case Study for the session? Criteria: Must be able to find at least 4 target users for your proposition in the audience; must have a logo and either have a website or a page in an App Store.
2) Would you like a consultation? Email me direct for a 30 minute appointment: julia@productdoctor.co.uk


Posted in Uncategorized

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *