Word: Predictive Persona
Definition: A research tool that allows you to validate whether you can accurately identify somebody who will become a customer. These types of personas go beyond merely describing what a user is like, but also offer specific characteristics that will make a person become a new or a returning customer.
Reference: I first learned of this term from designer Laura Klein in her blog post for Invision. Klein wants to turn the traditional “describe your current user” persona model on its head by changing the way designers think about this portrait. She writes:
“But the question they should be asking themselves isn’t, ‘If I interviewed a user, would this describe her?’ The question should be, ‘If I found a person like this, would she become a user?'”
Thoughts: The key to predictive personas is to identify traits and feature that will make a person want to become a customer. Once the persona is created, then designers can recruit research participants that fit this description. If you have a hard time doing this, something is wrong with your persona! Eureka!
It is always refreshing to try out a new take on an old research technique, so let’s get predicting!