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Enabling content discovery through AI-Driven content curation

FOR YOU

COMPANY

ZEE5

DEVICES

RESPONSIVE ACROSS MOBILE, PWA & TV

ROLE

PRODUCT DESIGNER

4 MONTHS

TIMELINE

OVERVIEW

Zee5 is a leading Indian OTT  platform known for its vast library of regional content.  "For you" in Zee5 is transforming how you discover your next binge-worthy watch! We've introduced a groundbreaking AI-powered recommendation system that leverages social media trends and Gen-AI technology to create a truly personalized experience.


I focused on the user experience of "For You," designing intuitive interfaces for AI-powered recommendations. This included crafting engaging layouts to showcase social media buzz and award wins, while ensuring clear presentation of titles and summaries.

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CONTEXT

Old "For You" page? More like "For Everyone" page

For You page was like a crowded party: lots of options, but nothing you truly connected with.

Zee5's "For You" page was a one-size-fits-all . It lacked personalization, resembled the generic homepage, and failed to engage users. This resulted in low click-through rates and missed opportunities to create loyal viewers. We needed a revamp - a personalized experience with viral content, social buzz, and features like mood-based recommendations to keep users hooked and coming back for more.

UM THE PROBLEM EXACTLY?

No personalization

There was no real estate on Zee5 app which could be perceived as "personalized"

No experience differentiator

“For You” page looked just like home page. The experience was not unique.

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No virality factor

Most content becomes boring in 3 days, there was a need for a dedicated place for viral content

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PROCESS

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Benchmarking

Detailed competitive benchmarking of similar products that offer awesome personalization.

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Social media sentiment

How to manifest the social buzz that we see in other products in Zee5?

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Objectives

Defined final use-case objectives to see what features do we want to implement.

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I/O Blueprint

To align all the teams we employed systems thinking approach.

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Brainstorming

A team brainstorming workshop with all the stakeholders 

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Decision factors

Based on our research identifying what are key decision making factors and attributes.

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Archetypes

Understanding the user archetypes to understand user needs, drives & blockers. 

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Conceptualization

Final breakdown of components and rail collections to be incorporated.

COMPETITIVE BENCHMARKING

While personalization was our north star, we knew a deep dive into the competition was essential. We analyzed both OTT and non-OTT apps!

By looking beyond the immediate competitors, we aimed to create a truly unique and engaging "For You" experience for Zee5 users.

OTT DOMAIN

To understand successful personalization features in the streaming space - recommendation algorithms, social proof elements, etc.

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N​ETFLIX

  • Profiles feature across devices/platforms

  • My Netflix - Notifications (Coming soon, New arrivals, Suggestions); Downloads; Shows you’ve liked; My list; Trailers you’ve watched; Go behind the scenes (Sneak peaks, insider news)

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​YOUTUBE

  • Home feed customization

  • Notifications - Choice btw which channels notifications user wants to receive

  • Creator interaction through Community feature

  • Youtube Music - Personalised playlists; Offline Mixtapes

  • Youtube Shorts: Personalised discovery experience; Hashtags

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MUBI

Human curated movie selections over algorithm generated recommendations.

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ROKU

Roku recommends (A short weekly show hosted by Roku that talks about the weeks best 5 content on Roku)

NON-OTT DOMAIN

To gain insights from unexpected sources! Inspiration could come from social media apps' personalized feeds or e-commerce platforms' curated product suggestions.

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I​MDb

  • Recommendations based on viewers' ratings and viewing history.

  • Watchlist feature and User generated playlists by movie enthusiasts

  • Discussion forums

Spotify

SPOTIFY

  • Discover Weekly;

  • The Only You Campaign;

  • Follow Profiles, playlists, etc;

  • Share on your favourite Social Media website

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ROTTEN TOMATOES

  • Audience and critic ratings

  • Personalised “You Might Also like” recommendations

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LETTERBOXD

  • Personalised Movie Diary - Track and rate watched movies.

  • Follow other users' profiles.

  • “Popular” (Within the community)

SOCIAL MEDIA SENTIMENT

Personalization goes beyond user data - it's about understanding the cultural zeitgeist. That's why we analyzed social media buzz around related apps! This helped us see:

  • Trending Content: What shows are sparking passionate discussions online?

  • User Preferences: How do viewers describe their favorite content? Are they using humor, excitement, or nostalgia?

  • Regional Nuances: How do social media conversations differ across languages and demographics?

By analyzing social sentiment, we aimed to create a "For You" page that reflects not just individual preferences, but also the broader cultural conversations surrounding the content users love.

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OBJECTIVES

Defining use cases was crucial for our "For You" page refresh. Without clear objectives, personalization efforts could miss the mark. By outlining these objectives, we ensured the "For You" page wouldn't just show content, it would spark conversations and keep users engaged.

01

Showcasing the positive social media sentiment related to a title to increase social proofing

02

Creation of alternate endings for popular TV shows and movies

03

Leverage conversational search on the 'For You' page in the form of an avatar for quick and guided content discovery

04

Personalized recommendations powered by AI/ML models

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AI-powered Immersive Discovery experience using Reels

I/O BLUEPRINT

We knew a successful "For You" page refresh hinged on clear communication between design and engineering. That's why defining input and output for each personalized feature was critical. Think of it as a recipe! We needed to specify the ingredients (input) - social media data, user preferences - and the final dish (output) - engaging summaries, alternate endings. This ensured features were designed with a purpose, meeting user needs and delivering the desired personalized experience.

SOCIAL MEDIA

ALTERNATE ENDING

RECOMMENDATION

INPUT

OUTPUT

Social sentiment about content on various social media platforms

Content level one-liner to be displayed in recommendation rail

INPUT

OUTPUT

Subtitles and Synopsis

Episode level Alternate story continuation options to be displayed on the page as a widget

INPUT

OUTPUT

 User, content and interaction data

User personalized Recommendation rails

BRAINSTORMING

Head of Design

For you currently stands at 2% of all Home feed clicks → we need to take it to 15%

Product Manager

The Head of the Family ( Not the breadwinner ) controls the Connected TV

Researcher

Let's experiment with things like Vibe Check- ask the user for their mood and recommend content accordingly.

Me hehe :3

1 million DAU consuming more than 10 min per day.
Dedicated placeholder across the platform, which hold potential/viral content in a periodic manner.

Sr. Designer

Conflict - Family time but want to consume personal entertainment, usage through mobile

We should also be able to monetise this while we create the experience, real estate to be given to brands