The Espresso News

Short, impactful all first thing in the morning

Economist recently released their Economist Espresso app which is based around an old but very well understood idea: Tapping into habits that people already developed and bringing another level of delight to their mornings. As long as your product provides quality content, using existing habits allows the users to transition your product with ease. That’s why I picked the Espresso app.

I really enjoy reading news and even though there are numerous sources to get news, I never found one simple source that could give me some highlights on things that I care about without sounding like complete jargon (if it’s short headlines) and still keeping it interesting. A news espresso app is just incredible at so many levels: I can relate to it because I drink coffee occasionally, I have one single source that provides me with good content and most of all, it’s just a spin on the same old idea, but the concept and naming are now tapping into a habit that I have. The marketing of a product really has a huge impact in that this app just based on its name makes me want to read it while I’m getting ready in the morning. So many other apps just provide the news in the morning without any context or relation to my life, the human connection is what separates the espresso idea (This is true not just for news apps).

A habit-forming product contains a few characteristic traits essential to capture users but they may manifest as something entirely different. To elaborate on that, these traits don’t necessarily have to be a pain point for the user, but they have to have a very low barrier of entry so that they can be integrated into the user’s life. More importantly, products like that need to do a more difficult job of delivering engaging, impactful and concise content and present it in minimal-user-input manner. What do I mean by this? Let me give an example, it’s a simple idea that could be as simple as swiping left to get to the next espresso-summary. Now why is this important? The idea here is that the user reads one story and getting to the next one is easy and intuitive. This is an example of what would form a habit, something a user would willingly spend more time on. Habit forming products depend on this espresso-factor: Central hubs, easy to navigate which translates to more time spent using the app forming a habit and satisfying to the user so that by the time they finish their coffee, they realize the time spent was valuable. Do that and your app will rock