Before creating my persona I researched exactly what a persona is. I know from my own experience at work that it is basically a resource used throughout the entire design and implementation of your product. It gives a name and face to the user. This way when you are thinking of ways to design the product you are designing it for a specific user instead of just the general population.
Personas are crucial part of the UX design process.
I wanted to research more in depth to see how other UX designers use personas. The first site I found, explained what a persona is. It described a persona as an, “Imaginary yet realistic descriptions of users of a product.” They could be valuable because they “provide basis for design discussions.” A persona should be realistic should be realistic so it is important to have a good idea of who the user of the product truly is. This is why I read through the reviews of my application. This gave me an idea of who actually uses this product. The comments described how they would want to use the product and from that I could determine more about their lifestyle and needs for the application.
I will also make sure to keep in mind that, “personas are fictional characters created to represent the different user types within a targeted demographic, attitude and/or behavior set that might use a site, brand or product in a similar way.” These are key parts to keep in mind when I create my own personas.
The next site I visited, DIY User Personas was very helpful in terms of what specific information is important to include and how the information should be laid out. This was a very important aspect to my research.
A list of things that should be included in my persona are:
- Social and demographic characteristics
- Needs, desires, goals
- Habits (consumer habits, behavior)
- Cultural background
- Must do, must never
Another websites slideshow explained that personas can be used for design, research, recruiting, and training. This further demonstrates the importance a persona has on the process.
One part that I really focused on in my researched was how they laid out their information in the example personas. At my work it was very simply laid out with a picture on one side with their name, age, experience, and perfection/education. On the other side it went more into depth about their lifestyle.
I made several sketches as I researched different ways to layout the information. I also took note as to the specific information that was kept.
I developed two personas. One persona was made of myself. This was usful because it gave me practice writing the type of information needed for a persona and laying it out in a visually pleasing way.
When creating my layout I used a mix of several different layouts that I researched. I used one from DIY User Personas in particular. I also made a final sketch before starting to put all of my information together.
It also gave me insight into the type of user I am. Although I am not at all a user a user of the application I am redesigning, the act of creating it started my thinking in that way.
I then created a persona for a user of Epicurious, the application I am redesigning. This persona is going to stay with me throughout my entire process. Because of this I made sure to put in a lot of research and time to make sure that it was as realistic as possible.
After doing some more research I found that mother’s are much more likely to use Apple products. Since my persona was going to be a mother. I kept this in mind while creating it.
After critiquing each others personas I redesigned them both. For the most part All of the information that I wrote was well done. I was really detailed in both of my personas, giving the designer a clear image of who that person is. It is so important to have a vivid image in the designers head because then they know who they are designing the application for.
I was not happy with the way that mine printed so I redesigned my posters in inDesign, and made sure that there was more white space. Although I liked the amount of information I had, they layout looked too crowded. I took out some of the parts that I felt I didn’t need and rearranged the layout of everything. I also looked at some of my other classmates created their personas for insertion.
I also had to make some changes to my 2nd persona because I changed my application.
Overall I think my new personas are visually cleaner and appealing.
My updated personas are in the links below: