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Developing behavioural personas for digital services aiming to build habits in its users


  • Explore decision levers at funnel events: Conversion, drop-off, inactive, engagement, completion

  • Identify and create user personas for personalised experience

  • Participatory UX prospects for future development

“Overall, the project really helped us understand the different segments of learners that were using the app and the value that we were or were not creating for them, depending on their needs. The three different segments of users that you presented are still something that we refer to and reflect on in our conversations on product features, content, or the way forward. I consider this to be a big win within the team.” Maseeh, Utter

"Based on our ideation, we have modified and updated our Google Ads campaigns over the last 2-3 months to target more of the US3 type of users who are likely to pay on the app. This has given us a lot of success in our conversions over the last few months." Maseeh, Utter

Key Insights

A uniquely presented English learning app, with paid and unpaid modules was looking to improve their educational impact and increase their user base. But they had little clarity on who all were their audience why the data acquisition and engagement data behaved the way they did.

Insomanywords made 75 user calls to users across India. With 47% response rate, by 35 user calls we got our insights. Users’ engagement with the app was strongly driven by personal need and most importantly their perceived level of English knowledge. Their need was interesting and varied: Shop owners wanted to attract and sustain educated customers, students wanted to fare well in competitive exams, teachers from NE wanted to speak better English, and graduates were apprehensive about their interviews, with their weak English.

It was not far from here when we identified that users chose to sign-up or engage with the app and pay for the app based non their need, knowledge and affordability. While at some level all the users chose to upgrade their English for their own survival, only one user group was intending to use the app for long duration, and willing to pay. Meaning, only one user segment had the need for the app-service for a longer period in their lifetime.

However, engagement with an app based service always needs emotion and need driven continuity. In this project that was anchored on their ‘craving’.

All habits start the same: a cue triggers a certain response. If the outcome is rewarding, the behaviour sustains. If the cue and the reward are consistent and response needed is consistently provided, that action becomes a user’s routine. At some point is strengthening neural pathway becomes a standalone craving. That even without the cue, the brain starts to crave the rewards and seeks to do the response action. During ideation session we were able to come up with ideas to strengthen the user routine and build craving - are uniquely targeting each user profile.

This project, and others that followed continue to validate this insight that app service personalisation is the key to enable and sustain user engagement and habits.


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