Social networking app where people can make new friends with
one-on-one activities and events.

00. Introduction


What I have done:
Market Research, Interview, Competitive Analysis, Personas Creation, Ideation, UI Design, UX Design, Usability Testing, Prototyping

Pen & Paper, Sketch, Invision, Photoshop

Social Networking


People are so isolated from the real world with virtual dialogues. 40 million Americans reported that they are chronically lonely. Design an experience that will help connect like minded people while doing things they are most comfortable with and like.  The increasing importance of work-life balance and saturated social circles with friends who are ‘busy’ or have different interests, there emerges a need for companionship for people to take part in activities of their interest.


Mobile app where users can make new friends through one-on-one activities and events. Gowime will connect people who are interested in the same activity. With Gowime friends, people can hike, enjoy a concert, do yoga, make shopping, visit an art museum, make an adventurous trip, do a guitar jam or go to movie and more. We want every person to be happy and find new friends while doing things they are most comfortable with and like. 

01. Discovery

The Challenge

– 40 million Americans report that they are chronically lonely.
– 52 million Americans report feeling extreme stress.
– One-third said they feel lonely at least once a week.
– Health problems stemming from loneliness include: stress, obesity, high blood pressure, alcoholism, depression, heart disease, insomnia, and stroke.

We hypothesized that we’d accomplish our goal by adhering to a few tenets:

First, we needed to make it clear that there is a community of people looking for new friends based on an activity and events.

Second, in order to find new friends we wanted to give different list of activities based on users interest and also the geo location.

Third, make finding new friends as easy as possible tapping a button.

Understanding the landscape a little better, my next research initiative was to interview event based app users to hear about their experiences. 

In order to conduct research properly and design effectively within a timeframe, we have decided to focus on users between the ages of 18 and 44 who are more likely to utilize technology when they are searching for their new friends.  With the target audience defined, I then used 3 research methods to help me gain a solid understanding of the problem space properly. The 3 methods including, competitive analysis, survey and interviewing with people who previously used Meetup, Tinder and Facebook Events. 

So, all those researches will help me to answer some of the questions as following:

Competitive Analysis

  • What are some of the existing solutions out there to help users to look for a good match?
  • Can user find a good match with ease using existing solutions?
  • What are some of the strengths and weaknesses of the existing solutions?


  • We need to get more quantitative data to understand giving behavior of users.
  • What are they looking for and what make the process easier for users?

Interview with 16 Candidates

  • Why did they want to find a new friends?
  • What do they look into when they are searching for a new friend?
  • What helped them to determine if their new friend match with their interest?
  • What were some of the pain points they encounter in their search & finding process?
  • What were some of their favorite parts in their search & one-on-one activity process?

02. Define

Key Findings

Understanding the landscape a little better, my next research initiative was to interview event based app users to hear about their experiences.

We interviewed 16 people between the ages of 18 and 44. Mostly female. All interviewees had previously used Meetup, Facebook Events or Eventbrite.

Early pilots of this product yielded the following results:

    • 85% of participants mentioned that the app like a mash up of a dating app (like tinder or bumble) with a social group activity app
    • 75% of participants mentioned that the app might help finding new friends new to an areas or traveling to different cities.
    • 90% of participants want to use the app regularly.


First I put together a persona that captured the characteristics of the user to design for. I created 2 deliverables to convey the persona— a persona overview, an empathy map, and a storyboard walking through a finding friend by the persona.

One key takeaway from research is that experience finding new friends and going an activity with someone new can really make big differences in people’s life. In order to ensure I am designing for friend finder effectively, I synthesized my findings into personas that represent my two different user groups: first-time friend finders and users previously used different apps. These two different personas both want to look for the best friend that match with their lifestyle and activity interests.

What They’re Saying

Here is what I experienced while I was single in New York at age 24:
- I wanted to date. But I had no idea how to meet someone. I didn’t want to use any of the actual “dating” apps out there because most of the men on there were extremely creepy and only had one thing on their mind.
- I wanted to make friends…but I was REALLY shy. I briefly looked at some of the social media “group activity” apps…but I felt too shy and nervous to show up to a big group activity all by myself with people I didn’t know at all.

Jennifer M.Photographer

03. Ideation

With the research done, I moved on to brainstorming to come up various ideas that can help our users to minimize their pain points and amplifying their gain points in the search & find friend process so that they can find a friend that matches with their lifestyle and activity interest smoothly.
In the process, I diverged and came up with 5 different product features that explored design of touch points. Such as:
1- Explore Activities
2- Join Activity
3- Find the Best Match
4- Smart Post
5- Review Profiles
I sketched out some low fidelity wireframes  to help me with planning:

04. Design

I then moved on to designing with Sketch & prototyping it with InVision. Actually prototyping it helped me to understand how some of the interactions designed in first place may not work well and helped me to iterate. Here is the final user flow generated.

Explore Activities

Explore recommended activities around you or choose the best activity that fits your interest. Find something very new to you and try something different.

Join Activity

Take a look at all those activities on Gowime. Is there one that interests you? What are you waiting for then? Send a request to join that activity. Have some fun already!

Find the Best Match

Search people based on their interests and activities that are common with you. Find like-minded people around you and explore new places with activities that you and your new friend are both interested in.

Smart Post

With smart posting, you can easily choose the category of your interest, add date, time and location of your activity and post it. You can then let people with similar activity interests find and join your activity.

Review Profiles

With Gowime you can explore people’s profiles to know more about them. See their photos, find out their interests and take a peek at their hobbies. Are they the real friend material for you? You go and decide.

05. Evaluation

After the high fidelity design process, we conducted guerilla testing with 12 users and also usability testing. Users are all in their 20-30s and they are looking for a new friend based on activity interest. We asked participants to complete the following tasks in the usability testing.
1- Create New Account
2- Search
3- Post New Activity (Smart Post)
4- Review Profile
5- Explore New Activities around you
6- Search near by Friends
After completion of the tasks, we asked our participants to rate the prototype on the scale of 1-10 according to satisfaction of use and how likely they use the app when they are searching for a new friend. The results we obtained were:
Satisfaction of use
Likelihood of use

Direction for Iteration

80% of our users mentioned that, this idea is a great alternative to dating website but definetly not friend finding app. Based on same interests, people can use Gowime as a new dating app. This result was not an asamption at all. So, after reviewing entire process and feedback all team tought that we need to iterate the entire concept not just design, as a new “dating app”.

06. Reflection

We had a lot of fun working on this project. As a UX designer, my goal is to understand user’s pain point, get the user insights and than make a difference in the world with my designs. Thinking how the outcome of this project took us to the different direction was absolutly not in our mind.

So, the reality is, if you can not measure, you ca nnot manage.

Few takeaways from this research:

1- Do not underestimate the user’s pain point.

2- Data, data, data.

3- Focus Groups would be great to start this user research.

4- We need to think the problem in a bigger scale.

5- Lonliness is a reality and still needs real solutions.

Make new friends. Be active. Become happy.
We want every person to be happy and find new friends while doing things they are most comfortable with and like.