Presenting UX Research to Stakeholders

Public speaking, and especially presentations, can be a daunting task for many. Even if it’s easier for some, everyone can relate to the anticipation and tension felt before a presentation.

The challenge is even greater for UX designers, especially when the audience consists of stakeholders who may not even be familiar with basic UX design principles. In such an event, the designer has to communicate in the language of both a layman and an executive without losing the importance or confidence of their findings.

If you follow these 6 tips for presenting UX research to stakeholders, you’ll be able to educate and convince even the most skeptical stakeholder!

6 tips to help make your presentation the best it can be

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1. Learn to Communicate:

You’ll learn a great deal of things when you’re researching the UX, but you have to learn how to communicate your findings to stakeholders effectively. If you just report the information and the statistics blandly, the executives will hardly pay any attention to them, let alone understand what you are trying to convey.

Rather, you should create definite segments that talk about the findings, the insights, how these can be implemented, and suggestions for further additions.

As for findings, these are the vital key points that you’ve gathered about the customers. These are just facts, and they should be announced at the beginning.

The insights are testaments to those facts. These may include statistics or results of surveys that prove the facts that you lay down before.

a cartoon illustration of communicating ideas for a UX presentation to stakeholders - TryMyUI usability testing

Once you have proved your point, it’s time for you to say what you think about the course of the company. Some people don’t feel confident about proposing the solution as they do about gathering data.

When it comes to this, people feel shy and awkward. However, if you can overcome your anxiety and put forth some good solutions, the executives will listen to you. Remember, the solution has to be substantial, otherwise your reputation will be at risk.

The last step helps by getting you the attention you require. Although you will convey the facts and the insights, some stakeholders are too distracted, or too busy to process all that information. If you do that processing for them, you’re sure to get their attention.

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2. Connect your Solutions with the Business:

You may have discovered an amazing thing about UX, but the executives won’t care unless there’s something in it for them as well. That’s why you need to relate your solutions to the business and inform them about how it can help them.

If you want your proposals to make a huge impact, you can start by influencing the teams that may be affiliated with your strategy. For example, if there’s a marketing team who are facing problems that your UX research can solve, you can contact them early on, and include a solution that serves their purpose as well.

Doing so will give you an upper hand, which will benefit you in your presentation and your career.

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3. Consider the Users:

The main purpose of your research is to understand the customers, and in turn, understanding the marketplace. However, stakeholders don’t want to understand the customers. All they care about is how the marketplace is shifting, and how can they make the shift favorable for the business. This is where you come in.

Not only the customers, but you need to research the competitors as well. You have to research on competitive products and the competitors themselves. If you do this, you can understand how the competitors and the products are evolving in the marketplace combined.

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4. Use Infographics:

When you’re talking to the executives, it’s important to speak in their language. Likely, they won’t understand a mobile interface design like they would understand a pie chart, because the latter is what they deal with.

That’s why you need to make sure that you integrate appropriate data and statistics in your presentation. For example, if you’re displaying the new user interface that you want to suggest, you can show them how this addition is going to influence the users, with infographics.

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5. Use the Inverted Pyramid:

The problem with schools and colleges is that they teach us to write academically mostly, and we make a habit out of it. However, when you’re presenting something, that method doesn’t work.

If you include five to six pages of raw information before putting forth the main points, chances are slim that the stakeholders will keep up with you. If such happens, they won’t listen to what you say.

Here, using the inverted pyramid method proves very effective. According to this method, you have to say all the key points at the very beginning. If you convey every important fact at the outset, you won’t have to worry whether anyone is listening to you or not later on.

Storytelling for marketing, design, and everything else - TryMyUI remote usability testing

6. Tell a Story:

The thing with stories is, they can leave a lasting impression. Which means you can do the most important with a story. The only way of making sure that the stakeholders will listen to you is by telling them a story in your presentation.

In which case, you can share a customer experience. If you share a customer experience that indicates that the customer was missing something, and that can be fulfilled with your solution, the executives will consider using your solution.

Parting words:

Your presentation will determine whether your company will take your UX research seriously or discard it completely. Even if one part of the research isn’t up to the mark, chances are that the whole research will be ignored. That's the unfortunate fact of our industry, which is why you have to make sure that every piece of your UX research is on point.

With the 6 aforementioned tips for presenting your UX research to stakeholders, you can fine-tune your presentation and get the best results out of it.

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