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Designing and Measuring Engagement in Digital Behavior Change Interventions

A presentation and workshop on the why and how of engagement to support behavior change.

Workshop for the 2019 Health Experience Design conference, adapted as a webinar for PharmaVoice. 

Co-authored with Dustin DiTommaso, SVP Behavior Change Design, Mad*Pow.

Frequently, when designers think about engagement, they think about it as an outcome. How can we increase the number of users, the time spent in an application, or the number of pages viewed? These measures can be important, but they do not capture real-world outcomes. We created this workshop to highlight the importance of designing to promote and measure real-world outcomes in digital behavior change interventions.

Abstract

Engagement is a prerequisite to any successful behavior change intervention, but engagement alone doesn’t guarantee a beneficial outcome. If we want to improve outcomes by improving engagement, we need a clear understanding of what characterizes meaningful engagement, how to design for it, and how to measure it. Despite designers’ every effort to convince, entice, seduce, trigger, or hook users into interacting with digital technologies, engagement with digital interventions is typically low. In this half-day workshop, we’ll cover relevant theories and empirical findings from the engagement literature, introduce a multi-disciplinary model of engagement, and end by taking a deep dive into features and techniques for promoting effective engagement in practice.

Learning Objectives:

In this workshop, participants will:
1. Develop an understanding of the behavioral and experiential components that make up engagement.
2. Learn what design features and behavior change techniques are most conducive to engagement and how to apply these to your interventions.
3. Explore how to best tailor content, features, interactions & behavior change techniques to fit individual users and their specific needs and contexts.
4. Assess different methods for how to measure engagement.
5. Think critically about simply promoting engagement for engagement’s sake and instead considering how to establish “effective engagement” or just enough engagement with your intervention or service to achieve desired outcomes.

Click image below for full presentation used for the webinar (44 sides).