The Problem
MLB players have substantial fan followings, but there has been a gap in providing a dedicated platform for players to engage with their fans and monetize their personal brands effectively. Traditional social media platforms lack customization options and often result in diluted fan interactions. Additionally, fans desire more exclusive content and personal connections with players beyond game performances and official interviews.
The Solution
We tackled this challenge by conducting an extensive foundation workshop that included a Service Blueprint, Stakeholder Interviews, Brand workshop, and a Protopersona Workshop.
Service Blueprint

During the Service Blueprint workshop, the team mapped out the entire business model and user journey of PopFly. This process helped them identify the touchpoints, interactions, and processes that would be involved in the application's usage. By breaking down the user experience into individual steps, the team gained a comprehensive view of the service ecosystem. This workshop revealed the main stakeholders: MLB players, PR managers, content creators, and fans.

Stakeholder Interviews

Stakeholder interviews were conducted to gain deeper insights into the needs, challenges, and expectations of the identified stakeholders. These interviews revealed the necessity for a Content Manager tool, enabling PR managers to share and manage content with creators and control publication, ensuring consistency and quality. Insights from these interviews also indicated that fans desired a more integrated platform to follow multiple players.
Protopersona Workshop

The Protopersona Workshop aimed to create fictional but detailed user profiles that represented different segments of the target audience. The two resulting protopersonas were:
Adults in mid +40: This group focused on memorabilia and exclusive real-time sports news. They sought deeper connections with players and a unique, personal experience.
Young adults +25 years: They were interested in players as celebrities, wanting insights into their personal lives and behind-the-scenes experiences.
These protopersonas provided a human-centered perspective, helping the team design features and experiences that resonated with the diverse user base.
Research Interviews
Following the foundation workshops, the team conducted in-depth research interviews with individuals who matched the protopersonas. This phase aimed to gather real-world insights, preferences, and pain points directly from potential users. By mapping the results of these interviews, the team identified two distinct user personas: the memorabilia-focused adults and the celebrity-focused young adults. This user-centric approach became instrumental in shaping the direction of the application.
In summary, each workshop activity contributed to shaping the evolution of PopFly from a personalized player app concept to a centralized platform catering to the needs of both MLB players and their fans. The combination of user-centric research, stakeholder engagement, and adaptable problem-solving led to a successful business model transformation and the creation of an impactful social media application.
Business Model Pivot
The research interviews led to a significant pivot in the business model. Originally intended as a provider of white-labeled apps for individual players, PopFly transformed into a unified platform. This platform allowed fans to follow multiple players in a single location, addressing the desire for a consolidated experience. This shift was driven by user preferences and aligned the app's functionality with the users' expectations.
Brand Workshop and Style Guide
To create a strong and cohesive brand identity, a Brand Workshop was conducted. Through this process, the team established four key brand attributes: powerful, approachable, excellence, and motivational. These attributes formed the foundation for the style guide, defining the visual elements such as colors and design elements. The choice of electric blue, navy blue, and orange colors aligned with both the brand attributes and the inspiration drawn from MLB sports brands.
The solution materialized as an POC with essential features:
The evolution of PopFly from a concept of personalized player apps to a unified platform demonstrates the power of user-centered design and flexibility in adapting to user needs. The case study highlights the importance of conducting thorough research and engaging stakeholders to identify opportunities for innovation.
By pivoting the business model based on user preferences and needs, PopFly successfully created a platform that empowers MLB players to monetize their personal branding while providing fans with exclusive content and a deeper connection to their favorite athletes.

You may also like

Back to Top