migme is a global digital media company but at its core, a social network with 33+ million monthly active users from emergent markets like Indonesia, Bangladesh, India, the Philippines and Vietnam.
migme has been around for 13 years and though having been through a few brand refreshes, the product design became especially outdated in the years 2010s as new design languages like material design and flat design were introduced and popularized. I joined the team in 2015 to help the team build a new design system and revamp the product's experience.
User's social status, one of the platform's long-lasting features, was among the experiences in need of an upgrade. mig users can acquire labels to distinguish themselves from other users based on their popularity, roles and activities on the platform. We launched our field research to identify our user personas and opportunities to make this feature front and center to users. Here are our findings:
mig's customers live in areas with less or limited internet access. We found some common traits amongst our users based on in-depth market research into the internet usage of our targeted markets and a field research ran in Indonesia:
On the user journey there are specific moments where users will see user labels and/or want to acquire user labels. Understanding where these moments were and the online world the mig community occupies was essential to the solution phase:
Our initiatives for this project include:
Through regrouping similar labels with the same a) metaphors (semantics) and b) powers (extra privileges and features on the platform like blocking users from a chatroom), we managed to reduce the number of labels to four:
Referenced from the social engagement loop, as defined by Zicherman & Cunningham, 2011, we needed to show: a) visible progress and reward for users who are aspiring to acquire a label,
b) motivating emotion by celebrating the reward or acquisition of a label,
c) social call to action through sharing the rewards and engaging more on the platform, and
d) a reengagement strategy through leveling up or acquiring other labels.
The solution we arrived at provided all users with more visibility and emphasis on the importance and weight of the social status system:
We took this opportunity to add new graphic elements into the mig platform to strengthen the brand language as well as adding more fun into the whole experience.
Understanding the power of integrating series feedback loops in which a user engages in an action, receives feedback or rewards, and gratification, feels encouraged to reengage and perform the next action has enabled our team to build a social status system in migme that not only increased engagement but also loyalty and user satisfaction. The system was welcomed by our old users thanks to our migration plan and by our new users as they are enticed by the fun graphics and this distinctively different feature in migme as compared to other social networks. We understood that our user demographics' needs are unique and differ from the user demographics of other social network giants like Facebook or LinkedIn therefore a completely different approach and community must be built to satisfy those needs.