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“Rootstrap was great to help us identify and outline our assumptions, define a clear vision based on customer feedback, and ultimately minimize our risk moving into development.”

— David Waldman, Founder of StyleMD

Goal: Connect Users With On-Demand Stylists

StyleMD came to us with the idea of giving everyone access to a personal stylist on their own time, at an affordable cost, and right from their mobile device. The young startup had a great idea, but they sought our guidance to turn that idea into a market-ready product. After dialing in the UX, we created a stunning, development-ready clickable prototype that let users find, book, and consult with a professional stylist in seconds. After this Rootstrap session, it took David and StyleMD just 12 weeks to raise $500,000 and achieve a market ready product.

At Neon Roots, we know that it’s impossible to end up with a refined app if you don’t start with a refined idea. Before moving forward with the session, we spent the first few days identifying the core functionalities and key value proposition before starting the backlog.

As a team of developers, designers, strategists, and content creators, we made sure StyleMD progressed seamlessly through the different pre-development stages. At the end of our Rootstrap session with StyleMD, David ended up leaving with a lot more than a set of slides and a clickable prototype — he left with a market validated product that was fully ready to head to a dev shop.

Strategy and Roadmap

We spent the first week getting the idea from concept to sketch. The initial pre-development phase is when any idea is at its weakest — and the Rootstrap ensured that StyleMD successfully navigated the initial phases of ideation and product design.

With StyleMD’s main goal in place, we asked a few questions to refine the idea and find market fit before beginning the design process.

Who is the target user?

What is their current problem?

Why do people need this?

After ideation and brainstorming with the team, we used our answers to these questions to define the core features behind the app.

  • Style selection for different trends and occasions
  • Stylist profiles with rates, scheduling, and previous outfits
  • Video based consultations for a completely personal, on-demand style experience

Backlog and Design

Our second week working with StyleMD was primarily spent iterating and executing what we learned during roadmap creation our first week. We started with low-fidelity wireframes and continued to refine our design until the end of the Rootstrap session.

By the end of the second week, all of the ideation, roadmapping, and design was finally completed. What initially came to us as a vision to reinvent how we get style advice left our office as a stunning, development-ready prototype that allows anyone to find a stylist in seconds.

Our final mockup features a minimalistic design that highlights all key points of the experience without overwhelming the user with too much simultaneous information. The navigation is quick and simple — from signup to stylist, the experience is easy yet elegant.

Author

CEO and Co-founder of Neon Roots

Ben Lee is the co-founder and CEO of Neon Roots, a digital development agency with a mission to destroy the development model and rebuild it from the ground up. After a brief correspondence with Fidel Castro at age nine, Ben decided to start doing things his own way, going from busboy to club manager at a world-class nightclub before he turned 18. Since then, Ben has founded or taken a leading role in 5 businesses in everything from software development to food and entertainment.