Pfizer Get Healthy Stay Healthy Personas

Razorfish Healthware created the site Get Healthy Stay Healthy for Pfizer. I was hired to do interviews and usability testing based on the personas they created. The report from that interview and usability testing effort can be found in the Work section of this portfolio. 


Deeply understanding a target audience is critical to creating meaningful, lasting engagement. As part of the User-Centered Design process employed at Razorfish Healthware, they documented key audience insights around information needs, motivations, and digital behaviors in their personas.

For Get Healthy Stay Healthy, the four audience personas were: Julie the Distressed Mom, Earl the Jaded Script Taker, Jose the Metro-Active, and Sally the Soon-to-Be. These four segments were identified by earlier research conducted by Pfizer as part of their broader "Third Imperative" activities.

Personas form the foundation for understanding users and driving design. They are design tools that help us understand who we are designing for and are ideally based on a combination of primary user research and syndicated research. For Get Healthy Stay Healthy, Razorfish used the Segment Identification and Target Profiling Study and Pfizer Imperative 3 Target Segment Media Habits documents provided by the Pfizer team, as well as Razorfish Healthware Connection Wheels as primary reference documents. Additional third-party data sources, such as eMarketer, were also consulted.

Personas are a key component of the User-Centered Design process. They are created to inform a strategic vision and assist in decision making throughout the design and development process. They are useful at a high level for determining what the overarching experience strategy is; and at a detailed level, they provide a basis for determining site categorization, page layout, visual prioritization, features, functionality, content, tools, and approach. Additionally, and very importantly, personas provide a consistent definition of users throughout the duration of the site development life cycle, regardless of what stage the site is in or who is part of the project team at the time.

What I uncovered during interviews and testing

Selecting people from the different user groups helped to recruit a diverse set of participants. However, the different user groups did not think all that differently, behave that differently, or have different problems they were trying to solve or different problems using the application. In creating different user groups, we want to make sure each group reflects a "difference that makes a difference" when it comes to interacting with our product and achieving results that make them happy. If that does not exist and there isn't a significant difference in goals, attitudes and behavior between men or women, young or old, tech saavy or not in relation to the use of a particular product, there is not a real need to have different user groups.  It's a rare case where personas do not add significant value to the design process. This was the first one instance I had encountered where I questioned what value they offered as a design tool for this particular health education site.