Metrics Driven Design

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Kevin Ford

September 22nd, 2015

The fast-moving intersection of games, mobile, and advertising is where the NativeX UX team lives, works, and designs new ways to help our partners rise above the noise. For that, we depend on a process of Metrics Driven Design.

For our UX team, metrics are key to how we help our partners, mobile game developers and brands, outperform other networks and win through their ads, ad formats, and overall approach to in-game economies. Jane Fulton Suri at IDEO said something recently that has helped to inform our approach to UX design:

“Radical innovation requires both evidence and intuition: evidence to become informed, and intuition to inspire us in imagining and creating new and better possibilities.”

At their most fundamental level, we think about metrics as a key and integrated part of the design process. In our work, we’ve translated that loosely to encompass a couple of core principles:
• Our design decisions are NOT based on intuition, taste, or personal opinion
• Intuition, taste, and experience guide our design decisions
• Metrics and outcomes are used to evaluate design decisions against business goals
• The outcome of those evaluations form the next step in the build, measure, learn, share process made popular by the lean startup movement

Sharing the outcomes and learnings of this approach within our organization and across our partner network has also been important to the process. Recently, at the Balanced Team San 2013 meeting held at Carbon 5 here in San Francisco, we had a chance to present our case for the importance of metrics as a tool to aid in the creative process, give a high level overview of our framework, and also share some of the ways we use it to create high performance ads and ad units for our partners. Later that weekend, our team also led a workshop with the Balanced Team members on ways to further innovate our framework, which we continue to evolve and hope to share with the design community as a whole in 2014.

So far, we’ve already seen amazing performance gains for our partners, 100-200%, and even greater increases in eCPMs, where we’ve balanced intuition-driven design with data-driven optimization and learnings.

We’d love to know more about how you use metrics in your design process. If you would like to share or learn more about our design team, and how we are helping our partners achieve their performance goals, please contact us at:

References: Joshua Porter

Sketchnotes by: Bloom

Kevin Ford

Marketing Manager


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