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My Users: Empathy Map, User Persona, and Journey Map

  • Prototyper

    This provides background about my users, their problems, current environment, and potential solutions.


    Name: My Diabetes Meals (by: Doug Warren)

    Purpose: Provide healthy meal plans and recipes for people with diabetes, and understand their glucose impact.


    • Track, analyze, and plan meals

    • Manage recipes, photos, and links

    • Understand diabetes impact


    First it’s helpful to focus on the people who will use my new app, along with related observations about them. This enables me to understand the current market, segment my target audience, and identify problems that can be solved using my app. This ensures that people will use what I create to improve their lives through better diabetes self-care that leverages digital health technologies.

    I will start with these documents to help describe my users:

    In the spirit of an agile design approach, I will create basic documentation initially based on my personal experience, and then refine and enhance it later as necessary. Feedback will be solicited from designers and potential users to help validate and extend this information.

    This process has been extremely valuable, and I am glad that I spent the time doing this before designing my prototype. It has enabled me to really focus on my user’s experience, their problems, and my opportunities.

    These are documented as updates 3-6 for my project, but it seemed useful to create a topic here in the Makerspace forum since it appears that is where everybody looks now.

  • @doug Looking good Doug, I'm just putting mine together now! I noticed you used yourself for the persona too. I should have outlined where to start with creating them, as it can be more effective to think from the perspective of others in your market.

    Check this out for more information about that. However, sometimes it is true that you are making something primarily for yourself, and you are the user. I don't think there has been much written about this though, since designing and building products is often a team activity within a company, and the material out there reflects that.

    These days, many are building products on their own though, so I think this could be a new area for design content. I found this article interesting about how individual 'makers' can incorporate design into their process.

  • Prototyper

    @Graeme Thanks for checking my initial attempt to create these design documents. This was the first I tried to do this, and it was quite a struggle. However it was a very helpful exercise, and I am learning a lot that will help me create better prototypes of my app.

    In my User Person document, I identified the following possible user personas to represent different types of users for my app.

    • Doug: iOS developer with Type 2 diabetes using One Drop and Diabetes Meal Plans

    • One Drop Mobile users

    • Diabetes Meal Plans users

    • All persons with diabetes

    • Any healthy cooking enthusiast

    Initially I worked on a user persona for Doug (me), and will now expand to additional generic types as personas for various market segments as design and development proceeds to address with the new tools you suggested.

  • @doug thanks for feedback on how it went! If you're not finding those excercises useful, don't spend too much time on them.

    They were useful to me as I had no idea what product my audience actually wanted. It helped me think around it and prioritise features - I documented it here as an example.

    However, many people make things for fun or for themselves. In that case, these exercises can be a waste of time and it may be better to start prototyping and testing them out. There isn't really a fixed order for doing this either 🙂


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