SPOKE User Research - Hero Image
User research   •   UX   •   Analytics
User research  •  UX  •  Analytics
User research • UX • Analytics
SPOKE is a start-up that aims to break the mold of mindfulness by using music as a mean of making the wellness industry more accessible and relevant to a wider audience.

The start-up business model is centered around a customer facing digital product: a Mindfulness mobile app. As SPOKE's solo in-house designer I am in charge of running user research studies in order to evaluate the product's performance within its target audience and understand how to best meet our user needs.

The aim of this research project is to guide the app's design and content creation decisions in order to make sure we are reaching and attending our target users. It goes across the Product, Marketing and Content Creation teams and will help in sizing the market for the SPOKE app.

The goal is to identify and understand the different characteristics among the public that arrives on the app and the behavior patterns that emerge from our audience while using the SPOKE app and how we can both improve the product for them - so they come back and keep using the platform in the future (impacting User Retention) - and better target our Marketing channels (in order to increase User Acquisition). Finally, we want to understand if the product is right for the users we are trying to attend and if the content is hitting on with the right users;

As an initial step of the research, I've collated information from SPOKE's Website Registration Form, which is a form that all our users need to complete so that they gain access to the app. According to the data gathered, between the months of February and May of 2021, there were in total 264 sign ups on the website. From this amount:
- 53.2% of the respondents were male and 45.2% female;
- 40% consider their Meditation level to be between 5-7 on a scale out of 10 and 26% say their Meditation level is a 2 or 3 out of 10;

When asked about what brings them joy, Music was the topic mostly mentioned, as it appears in the word-cloud below:
SPOKE - Registration Form Wordcloud
The most mentioned terms were:

- Music - 28% of the respondents;
- Being around Friends or Mates - 14%;
- Practicing Sports - 11%;
- Being with their Family - 8%;
- Enjoying Nature or being Outdoors - 8%;
SPOKE - Data from SPOKE Website Registration Form
Another important piece of information uncovered from the form was that near 60% (59.3%) of the users who signed up to install and try the SPOKE App have already tried other Meditation apps before, with Headspace and Calm being the most popular ones.

However, when asked if they ever subscribed to any of the apps, only 32.6% did, that means that almost half of the people who've tried those products, didn't stick to them. The 2 main reasons for churning out of the apps were either a lack of time and proper commitment from the user – as in they weren't able to turn Meditation into a habit – or the repetitive, monotonous content available on the apps. Only 21.2% of the respondents answered that they keep using the apps regularly, after subscribing to them.
SPOKE Registration Form Data - Reasons for churn on competitor products
Following this initial analysis, we opted for applying the Persona framework as the methodology to move forwards with this project as our aim was to simplify and humanize the complex audience using our app, generating therefore empathy with our users within the SPOKE team. We've scaled down the user sample, by looking at the group of users who downloaded the app on the month after the first analysis was concluded (May 2021), with the intention of also discovering research insights that would be fresh and not outdated.
SPOKE - IdentifiedPersonas
Using the data collected from the Sign Up Form for the app download on SPOKE's website, we created a 3-rule categorisation system, taking manly the user's experience and interest in Meditation into consideration. Based on this criteria, we were able to identify 3 different Personas within our audience and individually sorted each user from the sample accordingly into one of the Personas.
SPOKE - Persona Categorisation Criteria
Following this analysis and mapping out behavior patterns from the user sample by affinity, we came across 2 important takeaways about how the SPOKE's public interacts with the app's content:

- Users completed more Check-ins in-app than listened to episodes in their full length;
- 47% prefers to sample the tracks than listen to them until the end;
SPOKE - Affinity Mapping Outcome Slide
The identified behavior patterns were then categorised as:

what the person is trying to accomplish as an outcome
Needs: something a person needs to achieve a goal
Pain points: a barrier or difficulty towards accomplishing a goal
Tasks: something a person does to achieve a goal
Tools (other websites/apps): a tool a person uses to try to achieve a goal

As a result of Affinity Mapping the following points were uncovered:

Pain point:

The user has the goal of finding one episode to listen to the end, but they find it hard to do so, when the recommended episode is not of their taste or its duration doesn’t fit in their spare time.

- The user keeps checking in on the app in order to track their emotions/feelings.
- The user checks in on the app in order to find a suitable recommended episode they like.
- The user samples various episodes in order to choose one to listen to.

The user needs to do some episode sampling as a decision making step to pick one episode to listen to.
→ The user who has this need will most likely not use the Check In feature as an episode recommendation tool, they will either only use it as a personal tracking tool or they'll skip the Check In overall.
SPOKE - Comparative Analysis Slide
As a deliverable of this research process and in order to paint a more precise picture of our audience to the rest of the team, I've built Empathy Maps for each one of the 3 identified Personas and detailed them on a single canvas.
Persona Canvas Gallery
Click on the image for the full Persona canvas
Back to topNext workBack to topNext workBack to topNext work