5 Persona Distinctions: How to use Personas properly

man with mask

What are Personas, really?

alan cooper
Alan Cooper, father of Visual Basic and UX leader
persona example- woman on left, profile of brief descriptions on the right
Persona- typical poor example of a persona

5 Key Persona Distinctions: How to use Personas properly

Remember personas are representations of collective user actions. The big problem with matching personas to an actual user you talked to or discussed in a meeting is your sample size of that single user…In UX our qualitative research sample sizes are small, which also means we’re more interested in behavior and shared problem-solving between users (not each user individually). For example, if you interview 15 users and create 8 personas based on individual users, that’s not much of a pattern. It’s better to find generalized behavioral patterns in the data that apply to a larger set of users, and lean on a functional role, you can design around. With 15 users you might identify 3–4 key roles that capture 75–90% of user problem-solving needs.

storytelling written on a pad
Storytelling is vital for socializing persona insights and data.

Personas as storytelling vehicles

Frank Spillers, CEO of Experience Dynamics

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Experience Dynamics

Experience Dynamics

Experience Dynamics, a leading user experience design consultancy that helps high growth companies manage and win with UX/UI excellence.