Announcements

The User Interviews Contributor Guidelines

Carrie Boyd
/
November 14, 2018

Here at User Interviews we’re all about helping teams make better business decisions by making user research easier, faster, and more joyful. And we hope our content does that too. To make sure we’re making quality stuff, we need your help! If you like to write, talk, or ramble about user research, we would love to collaborate with you.

Our blog, newsletter, and Field Guide are designed to be useful and inspiring resources for researchers of all types and experience levels. We’re also launching a podcast and a webinar series to help build community around a discipline we love and are huge believers in: UX research.

We feature ideas, stories, articles, and contributions of all kinds from user research practitioners. We would love to hear from you!

We call our blog “Views,” and our newsletter “Fresh Views,” for two reasons.

1) We love qualitative research, and user interviews in particular (eh hem), and so we love using interviews as a key format in our content. And we hear our audience of researchers, product managers, designers, marketers, and entrepreneurs likes it too!

2) We want to highlight people with a point-of-view. Fundamentals have their place, but what do you believe that not everyone does? What have you actually learned from the field? How do you bring these insights together in new and interesting ways that will inspire your peers? What do you like to read? That’s the kind of stuff we want to publish.

Here are some ways you can contribute.

Email carrie@userinterviews.com to submit your ideas for the below or something else you have in mind that fits with our overall vision.

1. Participate in Other Side of the Table

It is pretty wonderful

This is a light lift for most researchers. Just copy and paste the template into a new document, then fill in your responses. Feel free to modify the questions or add additional ones. We love featuring videos, sketches, and photographs from your experiences!

Here are a few recent interviews from this series:

Caveat: I can’t promise we’ll publish every submission if you don’t have something interesting to say, and we always go through some light editing.

2. Write something

If you have something good to share, we want to hear it

If you have something to say and are looking for an outlet for that, we’d love to feature you and help promote it.

  • Here is a recent article written by Ashley Tudor, formerly head of UX research at Thumbtack, for inspiration. 🙋
  • Here is another from JH Forster, our VP of product, on what exercise and user research have in common: 26.2 Things. 🏃

Good to know: We love straight talk. We describe our audience of PMs, UXers, researchers as:

seriously curious, playfully deliberate, humbly confident, collaboratively independent, pragmatically empathetic. We’re looking for honest content that reflects these complexities.

3. Guest write “Fresh Views,” our newsletter

Image result for endless newspaper print

If you’d like to write an issue of our newsletter, and, optionally, link that back to an article you’ve also written for Views, great! Let us know your ideas. Here are a few recent issues, but you could write something a bit longer and stand alone too:

4. Submit your Medium articles to our publication

Already writing all the time? Awesome!

If you are already in the habit of publishing on Medium, we’d love to continue building out our publication with original content that helps extol the virtues of, question the assumptions of, and generally make us think critically about, user research.

To do that, email carrie@userinterviews.com, who will add you as a contributor to our publication, then follow these steps, pictured below:

5. Contribute to our Field Guide

It’s our map to the UX Research World

We launched the UX Research Field Guide with the goal of creating a rich resource of fundamental UX research content. We wrote all about it here. In short, we want it to have a little something for everyone, have customizable delivery (email, bookmark, web push, etc), be approachable and engaging, be living/breathing/feedback driven.

We want to hear your field stories!

On the living/breathing bit, we would love to continuously add more stories like below. If you have a story to tell from the field, and better yet with photos, sound, video, or sketches, please share those for inclusion. These can be quick anecdotes (serious or humorous or both), lessons learned, a way to think about a particular principal, tricks that work, etc. They can be just a couple sentences of a short essay.


You can see all published topics here, and also, generally, what’s coming in the next few months.

Submitting your content and ideas

If you want to toss some ideas around before committing to a draft, email carrie@userinterviews.com anytime with those ideas. Include a sentence or two describing the point of the thing and then how you’ll tell that story.

Draft checklist

Once you have a draft, share as a Google Doc and grant access to carrie@userinterviews.com. Make sure to include:

  • A couple of suggested headlines that actually describe the content AND are compelling 🏃
  • Include your name, title, company, and where you’d like those to link (e.g. Twitter, Medium, LinkedIn, Facebook if you’re so bold). 🙋
  • Please spell check and copy edit first to best of your ability. A good tip is to write it in one (or more) setting, then read it through and edit in another. ✏️
  • Images, videos, soundcloud links, illustrations, drawings, sketches, extemporaneous notes—anything that provides texture to your story is awesome. 🖼️

Please allow at least two weeks for editing and another two for publication. It’s possible we can move quicker at times, but we can’t promise it will.

Don’t like to write? Do like to talk?

6. We’re launching a podcast


If you’re more into talking about user research, we’d love to have you as a guest on our podcast, Awkward Silences. We’ve recorded a few episodes so far, and we’re excited to share them with you. The podcast is hosted by Erin, our VP of Marketing and JH, our VP of Product. They love to talk about research, product design, UX, and anything else that comes up (looking at you, politics)!

Our podcast is a place for conversation and, occasionally, some awkward silences. It’s casual, playful, and full of great insight. If your friends are sick of hearing you talk about user research, the podcast is the place for you. We’ll never get tired of talking about research.

Since this is a podcast and sound is pretty important, we do have a few requirements for contributors:

  • Please find a quiet place to chat. We’re not sound engineers and can’t cut out the background noise 😞
  • Be sure your microphone works well. You can test your microphone here. Listen to the quality of your voice and the amount of background noise you can hear. If you're not sure about the quality, just hit save and send the file to us for review.
  • In a quiet and well-insulated room, you may do fine with the microphone in your computer, but a wired mic is generally better. USB mics work really well and can be quite inexpensive. Anchor has some great recommendations.
  • We record the podcast through Zoom, audio only. For this to work, in addition to a good mic you’ll need a stable internet connection. You can test your connection here.

Want to contribute to the podcast? Email carrie@userinterviews.com to get started!

7. We want to create more webinars

Image result for professor ted
Got something to teach?

We love creating content that helps people learn more about user research, and that means video too! We want to create more webinars like this one. If you have a presentation/talk you want to share, we’d love to see it.

We want the webinars to be an opportunity for people to learn more about user research and the community. Therefore, we’re looking for contributors who have an idea they are passionate about and can present on for about 20 minutes. We’d love to be able to conduct webinars live so people have the opportunity to ask questions, but we’re flexible and down to chat about logistics with you.

Want to create a webinar with us? Email carrie@userinterviews.com.


Do you have another idea for a content collaboration? I’d love to hear it! Just email me at carrie@userinterviews.com and we can chat about all things content and user research.

P.S. Can we email you?

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Carrie Boyd

Carrie Boyd is a Content Creator at User Interviews. She loves writing, traveling, and learning new things. You can typically find her hunched over her computer with a cup of coffee the size of her face.

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