Personas study

Articleed | | Personas (UK).

We at Snitker & Co. are conducting a personas study aimed at companies who have used personas in their work. If you have experience with using personas we would kindly ask you to help us and fill in the questionnaire.


Personas til BabySam

Articleed | | Personas (DK).

Jeg bad Anne-Marie Christina Thoft om at beskrive sine erfaringer med at udvikle personas til et brugerfokuseret innovationsprojekt til babyudstyrsforretningen Babysam. Her er hendes erfaringer:

Prøv at beskrive projektet i korte træk?

BabySam er Danmarks største babyudstyrskæde med 32 forretninger fordelt over hele landet. En af BabySams nøgleudfordringer er at levere en på den ene side kundetilpasset service af høj kvalitet og på den anden side ensartet serviceydelse på tværs af salgserfaring og branchekendskab. Desuden er produktkompleksiteten og brugernes produktviden steget mærkbart de seneste år, hvilket stiller høje krav til medarbejdernes viden og kompetence.

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Personas research

Articleed | | Personas (DK), Personas (UK).

We at Snitker & Co. are starting a worldwide inquiry concerning how, for what, by whom, and for how long personas are used in companies. If you have used personas in your company and would like to participate in our research, please send an email to ln@snitker.com. We expect to be able to publish the results this autumn.

The effect of personas is finally proved

Articleed | | Personas (UK).

In the research Paper – Real or Imaginary: The effectiveness of using personas in product design by Frank Long, the author investigates the effectiveness of using personas. The results showed that personas:

  • Produces designs with superior usability characteristics.
  • Provide a significant advantage during the research and conceptualisation stages of the design process.
  • Photographs works better than illustrations.
  • Visual storyboards are more effective in presenting task scenarios than text only versions.

Personas in a cultural world

Articleed | | Personas (UK).

Research points to, that cultural cultural different readers fill the narrative gaps that occur in every text differently. Having this in mind, it becomes interesting to see how different readers interpret a persona description, as differences in interpretation might have impact on cross-cultural projects. 

In the following I will report from two studies of how people from different cultures perceive a persona description. The first study is reported here at pp. 43-46 and involved six participants from India, China and Denmark, most were young and students. This study was followed by a second study with eight participants from Japan, Brazil, France, Holland, Russia, New Zealand, Germany and USA. All were familiar with the persona method and all were usability professionals.

The persona portrayed a person working with marketing. The description was written in such a way that there were no cues in the text of age, gender and culture.
In both studies the participants were asked to: 1) read a persona description. 2) find a photo on the internet that resembled the persona. 3) write a short comment on why they had chosen this particular photo. 4) mail both photo and comment to me.

The two studies showed interesting differences.

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Influencers or Satellites – the persona is never alone

Articleed | | Personas (UK).

Personas are never alone in the world. They are surrounded by people who influence their decisions and jobs. I call these influencers for “satellites” as they float around the persona – it can be a parent who buys a mobile phone for a child, a teacher who decides to use an IT system in class, or a system manager who is responsible for a system is installed. The satellites should be described and play a role in the scenarios. The descriptions should not be as thorough as the personas descriptions and the satellites do not necessarily have a name, but they are important because of the function they possess – often as either helper or antagonist. 

In the redesign of Virk.dk, a website where companies report digitally to governmental bodies, we found a number of people who influenced the work of the ones doing the actual reporting, especially when it came to acquisition of a digital signature. We identified three satellites: the boss, the IT systems manager, and the person receiving the digital report. The three satellites where described in a brief form that lacked personal details, they had a name and a photo. The three satellites had very different influence on the four personas identified in the project.