Establishing an engaging UI text persona through extensive user research & testing.
Codal partnered with Samsung to establish an effective UI text strategy, recommend changes, and define best practices for a superior user experience across its mobile footprint for the North American market. A long-time proponent of user testing, Codal helped Samsung’s stakeholders see its value and embrace it as a vital step in enhancing the user experience.
One of the most recognized technology brands in the world, Samsung is an industry leader in developing cutting-edge mobile devices, which consumers across the globe depend on every day.
As part of its value proposition, Samsung strives to provide a streamlined, intuitive mobile user experience. Seeking to provide a consistent and inclusive experience for all users, Samsung is committed to ensuring its mobile UX helps users quickly navigate through tasks and focus on what really matters to them.
An essential component of this accessible UX is a clear and concise UI text strategy. Samsung is a large company that innovates at an extremely fast pace. As Samsung continues to unveil new, cutting-edge features and applications for its mobile devices, it’s crucial that the text within these features and applications is governed by an effective strategy. Ultimately, this strategy ensures consistency across all text in Samsung releases and serves to reinforce Samsung’s unique brand persona and value proposition.
Codal’s mission was to build a strong UI text strategy with a user-friendly messaging structure for Samsung mobile devices and applications. In a multi-phased approach, Codal set out to analyze Samsung’s UI text, compare it to its competitors, and outline a high-level strategy—including a new persona, voice, and tone for Samsung text. Then, Codal aimed to provide a set of actionable recommendations to existing Samsung mobile content, backed by extensive user testing.
Codal began by undertaking a content audit of Samsung’s mobile devices, as well as those of its competitors Apple, Google, and Huawei. Our team analyzed nearly 250 individual screens per device. Reviewing the tone, voice, diction, and structure of the text on each of these screens, we ascertained and articulated each brand’s unique UI text strategy. Using adjectives such as “detached,” “thorough,” “casual,” and “poorly expressive,” Codal’s content analysis detailed the positives and negatives of each device’s UX text.
This audit was crucial to understanding the nature of Samsung’s UI text in its current state, as well as how it stacks up to the competition. But more context was needed to truly grasp Samsung's brand persona, how the text is conveying it, and what improvements can be made to it.
In order to gain more context, Codal conducted brand-consumer research to extract a solid impression of how Samsung and its competitors are viewed in the marketplace. Pulling data from two of the largest market research providers in the U.S.—Resonate and comScore—our team gained valuable customer insights for each brand.
Primarily, we learned that Samsung users are motivated by reliability and functionality. To them, a smartphone is not a brand badge or a vanity piece, but rather an important tool that serves a practical purpose in daily life. By attaching this market perception to a specific brand archetype, Codal had the full context to assess its audit of Samsung’s UI text.
Our team determined that while Samsung's existing UI text was helpful, friendly, and approachable, it was also neutral and lacked an engaging disposition. Though it didn’t veer into being overly casual or detached like some of its competitors, it lacked an inspiring voice. Our objective was to revamp and modernize Samsung’s mobile UI text, making it bolder, more confident, and empowering.
Phase two of the engagement saw Codal undertaking extensive user testing to determine how to best make improvements. With the goal of evolving Samsung’s UI text to be more engaging and accurately reflect its brand persona, our team targeted UI text improvement opportunities within multiple touchpoints and applications on its mobile devices.
To gain perspective and understand direct user data, we developed a user testing strategy with three distinct rounds of qualitative testing. Codal worked with a premier Chicago-based research firm to recruit participants and create a secure remote testing environment that allowed users to participate in sessions from the safety of their own home. This remote testing environment supported live moderating and multi-camera recording for both real-time and post-session analysis.
The first two rounds of testing were hour-long, remotely-moderated sessions with an independent moderator. Participants in these rounds were both current Samsung users, as well as users of competitor devices.
Throughout the testing sessions, users were guided through a series of tasks within Samsung’s mobile device, including onboarding, settings, camera, and more. Participants were prompted to provide feedback specifically on how the on-screen text helped or hindered their completion of the tasks, as well as how it affected their overall understanding of the device’s capabilities.
Additionally, our team wanted to understand how certain prompts and workflows impacted how the user felt throughout the process, as establishing an emotional connection is the backbone of a great user experience.
To set a baseline of user preference and understanding in round one, Codal tested Samsung’s existing interface and content. By observing the sessions live and reviewing recordings and transcriptions after the fact, our team observed users’ behavior and listened to their verbal feedback. We were looking for instances of tension, confusion, and disorientation, as well as if the users felt the text conveyed a confident, engaging persona. What words or phrasing seemed to confuse people? What features did they fail to understand correctly? What didn’t meet their expectations and why? What were they curious about?
After each round of testing, Codal compiled observations from each individual team member. Then, by grouping similar observations together, our team gained an understanding of patterns in the text that were working or needed improvements. Based on these patterns, our content experts made substantial changes to the touchpoints in the test, resulting in improved UI text based on round one testing feedback. Round two participants were then shown these updated screens, and their feedback helped us refine and re-work the recommended changes.
Finally, round three of testing saw participants engage with these revamped screens through an unmoderated, web-based environment. This round of testing served to validate changes made after the round-two analysis and helped our team receive necessary clarity on specific phrasing and word choices.
After completing the user testing phase, Codal had a bevy of recommendations on how to improve Samsung’s UX text to more effectively reflect its unique brand persona. While participants responded positively overall to the existing Samsung context, Codal identified overarching themes that should be addressed to create a better user experience.
Based on our research and validation through testing, Codal recommended specific text changes and content principles in order to increase user experience comprehension, while creating a more consistent and engaging persona. These principles were intended to govern all UI text on Samsung’s mobile devices, ensuring consistency, and reinforcing the brand’s unique persona.
Samsung needed a clear and concise UI text strategy to ensure an effective mobile UX for its cutting-edge devices. Partnering with Codal helped Samsung understand its value in relation to its competitors, and how this can inform its unique persona. Then, through comprehensive user testing, Codal ascertained issues with Samsung’s existing content and supplied tried and tested solutions to these based on key strategic principles.
The result was a UI text strategy rooted in Samsung’s unique brand persona that helps the company provide a streamlined user experience for its mobile devices. Codal and Samsung, in close partnership, evolved the company’s mobile UX to be more engaging, accessible, and modern.