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User Research for Design Innovation

SPK Media’s research practice is led by David Shaw, a consultant specializing in user research for online and offline product and service innovation. SPK Media research clients include: Webroot, Bonfils Blood Centers, Kaiser Permanente, Best Buy, EffectiveUI and more.

We work with our clients to identify qualitative research methods that fit their project needs by offering the following research services:

Video ethnography

  • Observe your users in natural environments
  • Gain insights into behavior and needs
  • View and review user behavior
  • Create experience models
  • Present rich, documentary evidence to clients

Camera and journal studies

  • Put data-gathering tools in users’ hands
  • See the world through their eyes
  • Attach images to emotions
  • Capture spontaneous, unplanned data
  • Address personal and uncomfortable topics


  • Observe, interact with and interview a subject during the course of a day or experience
  • Understand events, experiences, decision-making processes

Ethnographic interview

  • In-depth interview to understand subjects’ worldview, life experiences, situations
  • Structured, yet open-ended dialog
  • Gets to the core of issues under investigation
  • Avoids stereotyping subjects
  • Rich data and quotes

Prototype testing

  • Participatory design experiences and co-creation
  • Observe interactions with concepts and prototypes
  • Record reactions
  • Paper models and wireframes
  • Immediate feedback to guide and refine design

While SPK Media’s research focuses primarily on web and technology users, David is also a partner in Consumer Research Associates.