Inspiration with Storytelling

To create a holistic vision of inspiration in fashion that guides designing innovative content products for Zalando, as well as to define the value proposition for the Zalando’s consumers around content.
Content Strategy
Creative Direction
Business Case
Product Design
Design Lead / Creative Strategist
The point of departure was noticeable lack of consistency around content formats facing the Zalando consumers in the fashion store and apps. By bringing relevant teams responsible for creation, planning and distribution of content, I identified user need gaps and conceptualised respective value propositions. Leading an interdisciplinary team of researchers, UX designers and creatives, I built several content product concepts, verified by user testing and ROI evaluation.
research synthesis
After defining its scope and deliverables, the content initiative project underwent a stage of secondary research. The main part of it was the synthesis of previous learnings around engagement and consumption of content. A rich collection of user interviews and already defined consumer insights from past projects served as a basis to identify main opportunity areas within the content realm. I framed them within three possible functions of content: inspiring, guiding, connecting.
Based on initial insights, with a divergent approach, the team brainstormed a vast amount of ideas. After clustering, analysing and evaluating them through feasibility and impact criteria, we converged the concepts together. Narrowed down to six distinct content formats, designers sketched them out and created low fidelity prototypes ready for testing.
User Testing
The complex nature of content products made it clear that there must be more than one loop of user tests. After setting up hyothesis and research questions, three evaluative rounds were planned - from testing the formats and topics, through UX and interaction, to produced content integrated in a comprehensive user journey. A comprehensive collection of learnings were gathered. Their synthesis allowed me to assign recommendations on the level of storytelling principles as well as targetting to various customer groups.
In terms of content, high fidelity prototyping means actual production. In order to prepare both a high fidelity ethnographic evaluation and an onsite A/B test, the team went through a week of guerilla video making. Hacking a creative process with a help of an internal Zalando production team, we managed to art direct, script, edit, and launch two Stories of Style - short, emotional films about interesting personalities represented by their unique styles. Undergoing the whole process as close to reality as possible, allowed me to assess implications on budget, resources and potential customer impact.
A thorough revision of efforts around content creation resulted in development of engagement strategy and content offering customised for different user groups. The final value proposition included business cases, art direction guidelines and high-fidelity prototypes of envisioned content formats. Evaluated via qualitative research, A/B tests and social media experiments, few of them have proven beneficial in terms of emotional response and engagement KPIs.