Kanga

Sr. Product Designer, 2019 – Current

Kanga is a mobile & web app that allows you to follow video game streamers across platforms so you never miss a stream or piece of content!

Visit Kanga.gg

Ace of Swords

Writing

Read my blog covering musings on design, technology, and where the future is going.

Getting started

In early 2019, I joined the team at Kanga to help them build the future of stream watching. Being a fan of gaming for most of my life but not a stream watcher, the problem resonated with me. How could we make it easier to navigate the ocean of gaming related content—especially that of a livestream variety?

Towards the middle of 2019, we launched the first version of Kanga as a computer vision powered livestream directory of Twitch.tv and Mixer. For the first time ever, you could see what was going on in-game without ever opening the livestream, making it much easier to find something to watch.

With over 1,500 users in the first week, we observed poor retention right away. In talking to our users, we learned people struggled to keep up with their favorite streamers beyond livestreams alone.

We decided to explore improving our value based on this.

Market
  • Gaming enthusiasts, like those interested in esports
  • Men and women between 13 and 35
  • Active on many social media platforms
Team
  • 5 Engineers
  • 2 Designers
Responsibilities
  • Product Strategy
  • Agile Planning
  • Interface Design
  • Experience Design
  • User Research
  • Growth & Marketing
Screenshots of the original Kanga Chrome extension, which embedded itself inside of any page the user activated it on.

Building Kanga 2.0

After interviewing dozens of users and sending out over 1,000 research surveys, we collected our findings and started the process of designing the next iteration of Kanga.

As lead designer on a small team, my role here included writing specifications for the new product, determining visual style, and creating multiple user journeys—like those needed for user onboarding.

Over the course of several months—working in 2-week agile sprints—we completed the build of a mobile and web app for the new Kanga product.

Sketching allows rapid exploration and collaboration with the product team.
The new interfaces for Kanga were a mix of many familiar paradigms users were familiar with across livestream platforms and social media, smoothing out the experience of each.
I worked with Emiru to update her Twitter link to point to her Kanga page

Building in ideas for growth

During our exploration into improving the Kanga platform, we recognized an opportunity for our product to behave as a super-charged LinkTree for streamers.

After researching needs from content creators, we decided to build a dedicated portal for content creators to manage and customize their pages.

This ended up being a great tool for getting our product in front of consumers—as demonstrated by Emiru’s Twitter link—without using paid advertising.

The new Kanga web app was a fullscreen experience, allowing content—whether livestreams, clips, or photos—to take center stage.

The Results

The redesigned Kanga app for web and mobile as performed significantly better than our original flash-in-the-pan Chrome extension.

There were many challenges in this development, but the biggest thing I would change would be to think about marketing earlier on to ensure a smooth roll out to our target audiences.

All in all, it’s been very positive seeing content creators use their profiles to promote their content across platforms and surprising to see the volume of traffic generated by links on social media.

In the numbers

Over 75K

Visitors in the first 3 months

45%

of traffic via social

$0.00

Spent on ads or promotion

2%

of visitors create an account