Design, Full-stack Development
Asim Robinson is the cofounder of Angelic Voices Ministries, a Christian community organization. Their church launched a new venture program to encourage entrepreneurship and innovation within the community. This is where they got the vision for the AVM platform.
In the early days of social, some people thought it taboo to talk about social media. But a brave few weren’t held back. They used the tools at their disposal to share a message they believed in. This led to an explosion of faith-based creators across all social media platforms, from Youtube to Twitter to TikTok.
Their research revealed that many people enjoyed using social media to connect with faith based creators, but having all of their secular and faith content mixed together wasn’t always ideal. People wanted a dedicated platform they could use to discover all the latest content from the Christian Community. AVM is unique because it hosts video and audio content. You can sit and watch a speech or a movie. Or you could listen to a podcast or music. In addition, AVM has a live TV feature that allows you to watch pre-scheduled content.
They had the vision and the idea. But they tapped us to lead the design and development of the platform.
We designed and built their iOS/Android app and web app.
React Native and Laravel with PHP 8 for Rest APIs
AVM came to us with a pretty defined scope of what they wanted to build and why. So this made our job easier. They had an engineering background so they drafted up all of the technical requirements of the product.
Our job was to look through those requirements through a human-centered design lens. We had to take those requirements and translate them into a cohesive product experience. We did this by going through several exercises together.
First we defined the competitive references for the product to better understand what success looked like.
Second, we did one of my favorite product scoping exercises: Product on a Page. This is a rapid brainstorming trick where we try to define the most essential aspects of the product before bias sets in.
Then we worked with the client to identify the core jobs to be done for each of the users. Here we had to define the feature set for consumers and creators on the platform.
Like most of our clients, AVM tried building out their MVP themselves. They used TikiLive to create an online TV network. But as you can see, it didn’t quite go as planned. The design is outdated, overwhelming, and confusing. It’s not clear what you should do or what the site is for. There’s no indication of additional affordances or functionality available.
We did a full teardown of their existing site to create guardrails for the redesign. The primary references for this project were Youtube and Apple Podcasts because of the focus on combining audio and video content into one platform.
Product on a Page
Who’s it for?
Churches, pastors, and their congregations
Why do they need it?
Pastors give several sermons on a regular basis. But sometimes church members miss the sermon and they don’t have a way to revisit that content.
What does it do?
It’s an audio and video content platform and social network. It allows people to find curated Christian TV, video, and podcast content. It allows church members to follow and connect with their favorite churches, pastors, and preachers.
What problem does it solve?
It provides a dedicated platform for all formats of church content. This allows people to:
- Discover content that’s relevant to them
- Listen however they want, whether it’s on the go or at home
How’s it different?
- It combines audio and video content
- It combines on-demand content, but also allows people to schedule their content.
- It allows people to broadcast their content on a live stream similar to Cable TV programming
- It’s focused on the Christian Community
- It allows you to donate directly to your favorite channels
- Browse and discover on-demand content
- Watch live stream/scheduled programming
- Content engagement (like, comment, react, share)
- Follow channels/creators/organizations
- View creator/channel profiles
- Explore content categories
- Create playlists
- See notifications
- View watch history
- Donate to churches, pastors, or organizations
- Upload audio and video content
- Schedule videos for live premieres
- Manage their channel metrics, content, and engagement
- Get support from the webmaster when needed
This project was an exciting challenge. We’re known for our brand and marketing design, but this project was pure product and utility. We shifted our focus from emotional design to functional design. We had to think about how we could make the experience as usable and intuitive as possible. From a development perspective, we were focused on performance. So we integrated AWS as our media server to ensure the system could scale properly. We were also able to complete the project 50% ahead of schedule. No better feeling than seeing your work out in the wild making a difference. Shout out to AVM for making that possible!
If you’d like to learn more about AVM or discuss potential projects, feel free to shoot me a ping.
Till next time — own your power, give back, and leave no stone unturned.
Black Lotus Out.