Hypothetical, archetypal user characters, defined in detail
They have names and faces. The whole team can picture them
Defined by their behavioural and attitudinal differences
Behaviours and attitudes influenced by their motivations
Not market segmentation
Personas help… reduce the effects of the ‘elastic user’ – when team members use their own beliefs and opinions to represent the user
Personas help… encourage empathy for the user throughout the project team, helping to inform and validate design solutions and business decisions
The context of personas in User-Centred Design Specify the system behaviour Personas Scenarios User journeys Scamps Prototypes & testing Detail design Specification Model your users Model the ideal experience Model the product/service-to-people interactions Model the interface in detail Test prototypes with real users Specify the interface design Build the product/service
We create personas using the Cooper methodology ( About Face 2.0 The Essentials of Interactive Design 2003 ). This methodology provides a repeatable framework for persona development.
Define axes Identify patterns Map data into columns by user Develop personas from emerging groupings of patterns Create hypothesis for axes Observational research of product or service interaction Scenarios, user journeys, prototypes, visions for the future, training
Segments are usually the result of quantitative research whilst personas come out of qualitative observational and interaction research
Their relationship is one of co-informing and co-validating
The persona process allows new themes to emerge through the depth of its open process
The segmentation process provides reliability
Personas can map to segments
Segmentation mapping Segmentation models Sally Nichols Diane Rowe Jerry Ellis Maps somewhat positively Maps positively Maps very positively Strength of mapping Segment 1 Learning first, technology second Diane believes learning is important but also thinks technology is part of the future. She does not have enough time to find out the detail of what goes on in schools. Learning is of high importance to Sally and she will do all she can to push her child and the school to deliver the best education. Jerry, of course, believes learning is important but does not feel he needs to be that involved in the process. Segment 2 Switched on but too busy to stop Whilst Diane feels like she does not have the time, she does not feel ‘switched on’ either. She has too many responsibilities. Sally makes the time and is not driven to find out about the latest technologies. Jerry knows how to find the information he needs, in that sense he is ‘switched on’, however, he tends to help out on fun activities. Segment 3 Middle of the road Diane puts her faith in the system so shares the behaviour of this group in that they are defined by their lack of strong characteristics. Sally has too much drive to map to this segment. In his complacency, Jerry shares characteristics with this segment as his drive is to sustain the ‘normal’ life he has achieved. Segment 4 Well-off supporters Diane does not feel the confidence of this segment. She may be comfortable but she worries she is doing all she should. Sally is engaged with technology. She has values which map to this segment even if her income level does not match. With his aspirations firmly in his past, Jerry is now in this segment. Segment 5 Unplugged and disadvantaged Diane is not very engaged with technology. Leaving school at 16 means she been brought up with more disadvantages than most. She sees herself as very different from this segment in terms of drive for her children’s future. Some members of his family would fall into this segment.