Evaluate the ROI of Your Digital Transformation Through the User Equity Model

Author: Thomas Halter

This article by Brice Le Blévennec was first published in French in the Inside Magazine.

In their new role of experts in user experience design, the agencies that assist companies in their digital transformation must have tools and processes enabling them to identify priorities and to measure the results of their activities. How can we estimate the value of a project, product or service – even that of an entire company – and establish an action plan to calculate its ROI? We can, thanks to the Emakina User Equity Model!


The design, creation and implementation of memorable and rewarding, innovative user experiences, is a major challenge for agencies. One of the key challenges in this task is to represent the interests of users to the companies that hire us, and to reconcile these with the organisation’s aims. In order to obtain the best rates of adoption of their services and products, it is imperative to meet the users’ expectations.

This is why Emakina is positioning itself as a User Agency, a player which can navigate between the expectations of all parties, to achieve the best possible return on investment. For this, we have developed a tool to measure the quality and usefulness of services provided: the Emakina User Equity Model.

Reputation, user experience and loyalty: the three pillars
This model is based on three central elements: the reputation of an organization, user experience and loyalty of users to a brand and its products and services.

The reputation embodies the strength, the power of a brand, its intensity and resonance with consumers, which determines the ability of a business to attract new users. Which of these are ‘front of mind’, do we spontaneously think of, or are associated with positive values?

As such, the general feeling expressed in ‘earned media’ (blogs, social media etc.) is crucial: how many fans does the brand have on Facebook, how many followers on Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter and so on? How many bloggers write spontaneously and positively about the brand? Do they have ambassadors – fans who do their promotion among their networks, defend and recommend their products?

The user experience at the heart of the process
The quality of the user experience in turn, determines the objective value of goods and services. The emotions caused by user interaction on all touchpoints must be positive: fun, nice, fun, simple, useful, efficient, ergonomic, memorable, leave a footprint on all senses … All devices, both offline and online are carefully considered.

Loyalty, expressed in terms of retention (loyalty of the user, as well as the duration of the relationship, determine customer value throughout its ‘life cycle’: the ‘lifetime value of the user’ is defined by money spent by the user throughout his relationship as a customer with a brand – before leaving for the competition.

User retention or fizzling out
We assess if the product is addictive – and to what extent, and if it hooks the user (e.g. it’s difficult to make the decision to ‘leave’ Facebook for many practical reasons, linked to its use).

Can use of this product be repeated, is a CRM platform being effectively used, what about the ‘churn rate’ or attrition rate (how many customers are lost and how much are gained during a given period), what is the size of the user community, does the brand offer a new product at the end of the first product cycle? The answers to all these questions help define the brand loyalty.

What’s the ROI for Emakina’s customers?
In practice, these three elements are assessed by a range of qualitative and quantitative research techniques. Through questioning groups of users (focus groups), we come to understand their assessment of the brand and extract specific figures through advanced analysis tools.

The results are used to attribute a value to a brand, a service, a product, and compare it with its competitors in a given market. But they also enable an ‘audit’ of the company, to identify its weaknesses and convert them into opportunities for improvement, and help to prioritize tasks.

The Emakina User Equity Model is of crucial importance for customers of Emakina, since it enables a comparison of the business situation before and after the intervention of Emakina teams – to be able to see what has been improved and therefore calculate the value of the organizational benefit. This remains, of course, the bottom line for any company that undertakes a digital transformation.

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