category: UIUX 360

Paradox of Specificity

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Paradox of Specificity

What is Paradox of Specificity?


The Paradox of Specificity tells us that adapting our efforts to the needs of a more specific audience creates solutions that are useful for a wider range of conditions.

The paradox of Specificity is user research and user experience theory which states that adapting our efforts to the needs of a more specific group will yield solutions (products, concepts, services) that are useful to a much wider audience.

When a designer designs with a particular user group in mind, he creates products that appeal to a mass audience beyond that target group. The more specific you are when designing a service, the more attention you'll pay to the user, and the better product or service will be.

Paradoxically, focusing on a more specific user group in the design phase allows you to develop a product that has a more generalist appeal.

A simple design improvement that aims to solve a niche pain point; can be valuable to a much larger audience than you may guess at first. Specificity also helps you avoid vague promises and content that is hard to follow because it doesn't really provide actionable advice.

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