Meditation, like any healthy habit, takes repetition to stick. But while the folks behind Calm, a meditation and mindfulness app, knew their product’s core value was helping people to learn and build a meditation practice — initially they didn’t put too much thought into the practice part of it all.
That changed when they dug into their behavior data and discovered that users who had taken pains to schedule a daily reminder in the app’s settings were much more likely to stick around. When they proactively prompted new users to set a daily reminder after completing their first meditation session, Calm saw a 3x increase in daily retention — and according to their analytics platform Amplitude, this boost impacted weekly and monthly retention as well.
Calm increased the success of their product by making it easier for their users to remember to use the app for its core product value.
If you make web or mobile products, you’re actually in the business of task management. You’re counting on your product to become a recurring part of your customers’ lives. In order to accomplish that, you have to motivate your users to build a new habit.
Sometimes software companies forget that what they’re building isn’t just a product that people find valuable. Part of what you’re building is how people will find and experience that value. It’s easy to overlook, because it seems like enough of a challenge to build a great product that really helps users with their needs. But humans are a bit absurd. We don’t get around to fulfilling all our goals, checking off all our to-do’s, or following up on our resolutions — these are the people you’re working with!