Africans living in the diaspora need a way to effortlessly perform Afrobeats karaoke during Afrocentric social events/gatherings.
This problem space stems from a recent personal experience. I was at an Afrocentric social gathering with a karaoke session. More than 95% of the songs performed were Afrobeats. YouTube was the tool being used during the session. I noticed performers were struggling to find the song they intended to perform. When they did, the songs were either sing along versions (different from karaoke versions) or lacked accurate lyrics with no visual cues. In some other cases, performers were abruptly interrupted by 5-15 seconds non-skippable ads before and during their performance.
This bewildering experience resulted in me asking the question “is there a simpler and effective tool for performing Afrobeats karaoke?” Results from my curiosity research lead me to the conclusion that the existing karaoke products do not sufficiently cater for the Afrobeats genre and its karaoke experience.
Afrobeats is a growing genre with a vibrant Afropop culture. Within the last decade, this once niche and underrepresented sound of music has become more mainstream. This explosive growth has led to Afrobeats becoming a huge part of Nigerian and African pop culture.
Over the last 10 years, the atmosphere of Afrobeats music has become huge in the diaspora. Because of this, Afrobeats music is considered the No.1 fun factor in every Afrocentric event or gathering. For these reasons, there has been a heightened demand for Afrobeats karaoke at these social gatherings.
The creators of SingOn, a web-based PlayStation software, estimated the global karaoke market to be as much as $10 billion USD . This audio-visual interactive type of entertainment usually offered in clubs and bars, where people sing along to recorded music using a microphone , is becoming more popular in Afrocentric social gatherings. Nonetheless, the existing process and tools, including Youtube, Spotify and other generic Karaoke websites (Ex. Singa, Karafun, LYRX, Etc.) have proven insufficient with respect to Afrobeats and the entire Afrobeats Karaoke experience. A combination of these impediments has resulted in user frustration and dissatisfaction at the end of a karaoke performance or session.
Conducted a study to understand the major pain points users experience while using existing products for performing Afrobeats karaoke and how these issues contribute to their dissatisfaction with the entire Afrobeats Karaoke experience. Both evaluative and generative research techniques were employed to obtain user experience data and feedback.
The research confirmed my initial hypothesis. The key insights are as follows:
The preliminary user survey along with the interviews conducted provided the opportunity to further understand the pain points users are currently experiencing while using existing karaoke products. Ad interruptions and difficulty finding the right song with the correct lyrics were the top 2 stress points users complained about. Users also highlighted limited Afrobeats catalogue and subscription fees as secondary pain points.
Based on the responses from our target, it was evident that the solution needed to embody the Afrobeats culture with a focal point on the entire Afrobeats karaoke experience. The proposed solution will be focused on eliminating the pain points users are currently facing when using existing tools, while sidelining the various inconvenient elements of these products.
With the two main pain point being Ad interruptions and difficulty finding the right song, the jobs-to-be-done (the solution) needed to be centred on creating a product with the following features:
While this product will not be built in the Co.Lab 8-weeks PM bootcamp, I am looking forward to working with a team in the future to establish a roadmap and fully execute on the “how” of the final solution.
I intend to take my experience and lessons learned in this program to develop a future MVP with a team of UX/UI designers and developers.
This Co. Lab program has been an intense eye-opening experience for me. I intend to carry on expanding my knowledge and skills in the problem space and in the overall product management domain. I was able to employ my knowledge in scrum in writing user stories during the user research phase. Additionally,
I fully understand the importance of focusing on the problem space while keeping the solution space at arm's length. Centering on the “what and why” versus the “how”. This program provided a deep insight on the best practices and techniques on developing a coherent problem statement, a comprehensive research plan and a compelling product requirements specification. Focusing on all these without skewing into the solution space. I learned how user research is essential in identifying the existing pain points and discovering the jobs-to-be-done.
Overall, I have gained valuable knowledge on how to effectively approach a problem space, to enable me drive value creation and leading the execution of a well formulated solution, with the highest prospective impact. As a lifelong learner, I look forward to employing these learnings in my overly progressive personal and professional adventure.