Banjo Robinson
and the product
design story so far…



We making reading and writing fun!

Banjo Robinson is a magical globetrotting cat who sends fun packed letters from his adventures around the world to children age 4-8 years old. Banjo engages young children with their reading and writing through a hybrid of real world and magical products, putting the “JOY” in learning.

Children also learn about the world, cultures, diversity, travel and growth mindset through his adventures. They explore a magical world of make-believe and reality, brought to life through magical tales, curious pals, a subscription and online resources for use at home and in school.

I’ve been working on developing products including an App for children and families. The App is currently in the research and design stage.

Read more about Banjo Robinson and how it all began from our Founder.

This page is dedicated to the Product Design side of my role as Director of Product Design (UX-UI focus) at Banjo Robinson. 

Head of Product Design
UX & UI design
Strategy & road mapping

Product owner
User research 
Product market fit
Ideation sessions
Affinity mapping
User flow
Wireframe sketching
User interface design
Monetisation, pricing & funding




Banjo Robinson’s unique value proposition is providing screen-free fun for children age 4-8 through joyful learning activities. Children receive activity-filled letters through the post addressed directly to them.

The subscription by post

Getting the letter

Writing back

Enjoying the activities

The opportunity:
Reducing churn

The subscription blurs the realms of reality and make-believe, providing sneakily educational materials with 9 out of 10 children writing back to Banjo. With this model proven, we wanted to find a way to broaden our outreach and look at reducing churn form the subscription, possibly by enhancing the product in an interactive way. 

The challenge:
Engaging gen Alpha

Digging deeper, a series of user tests and focus groups revealed that whilst the subscription is performing its mission, (to increase literacy levels through fun learning) there were issues that affected the overall user experience. Pain points, such as gen Alpha (“gen now”) expecting on-demand content, levels of reading ages and the amount of time busy parents could give to support younger children doing the activities.


User research

Following on from the initial set of user interviews and testing with existing customers, I set about delivering further in-depth interviews with non-customers, to understand product market fit. This included parents typically within the 25-50 age group and their children age 4-10 years old. 

1.Research & analysis

Interviews, landscape analysis


Initial analysis

Interview script

In-depth interviews
Customers & non-customers

I posted on LinkedIn to recruit a round of busy parents. A great way to easily screen at a low cost. The interviews were hold on Zoom and face to face.

During this particular interview round, I wanted to identify:

1. How age appropriate our existing content is.
2. If parents allow their children to access digital content and if so, what types of Apps do they allow and for how long?
3. How they felt screen-time impacted the child and family life. Is this actually a good thing for a busy parent?
4. What don’t you like about your child using Apps?
5.Testing of 3 concepts born out of the in-depth interviews with existing customers



Empathy + Affinity mapping 

Empathy map session

Affinity map session

The Affinity Process

In this collaborative team session, we sorted all the feedback from the interviews sessions and positioned them into groups of feedback, including pain points and solutions. We could begin to see recurring pain points and ideas for growth.

1. Banjo appears to be for younger kids but the content is pitched at a higher level
2. Most parents do allow their children on tablets but for a limited time only.
3. Why? Because it enables busy parents to finish work or domestic chores. It is a good thing – in moderation.
4. Apps often consume children by being overly addictive with long sessions.
5. Any levels or games should be a maximum of 20 minutes, 6. Anything digital should have a sneakily educational value and share good values and messages, including being diverse and inclusive.
7. Should include instant gratification, such as rewards, currency and new fun things to do.  
8. Self-serve content is a MUST. Parents expect it. As do children.


Product concepts


1. Expand the offering to adapt to different levels and ages of children. One size doesn’t fit all.
2. Empower parents to download content as and when they need it, developing a self-serve approach.
3. Develop concepts for an interactive and playful App for children to engage with Banjo in short bursts.

Analysing the emotions of the user journey

Road mapping


1. Concept and MOAT for funding document
2. MVP for parent/teacher resources hubs
3. Develop content for a younger audience and make the subscription flow a better experience. 
Develop concepts for an App
5. Sketches, flows, interactions and wireframes
6. Testing (Ongoing)
7. Design, validation + monitoring


Product 1:
Self-serve content 


SKetch & quick Figma mock-up

Sketching the advanced hub flow and a simple MVP in Figma.

MVP, membership & monetisation

We decided to develop a self-serve portal in 3 steps:
1. Test with an MVP built straight in WordPress
2. Collect data, iterate and develop into a membership area
3. Start to monetise downloads “Twinkl style”




We decided to develop a self-serve portal in 3 steps:
1. Test with an MVP built straight in WordPress
2. Collect data, iterate and develop into a membership area
3. Start to monetise downloads “Twinkl style”

The WordPress MVPs are almost ready for launch

I designed and built a simple MVP page for both the parent and teacher hubs, with downloadable content available for an exchange of details. Users can also “register their interest” building a case for more content, developing the MVP and pitching for funding.


Product 2:
Banjo World 

In-depth interviews revealed a strong case for interactivity with Banjo. Reluctant readers really do seem to engage with Banjo and so we started to look at ways children could safely engage with content, learn to read and write, whilst travelling around the world with Banjo.

The very first concept. Exploring a rewarding and sneakily educational concept for an App. 

Medium fidelity prototype


The following prototype was tested with children and adults to see if this concept had legs. Children and families log-in, choose the countries they’d like to visit, meet cat pals, play games and puzzles and earn rewards, such as stamps in passpawts and currency to travel to the next country.

A simple prototype to test with our target market


Product 3:
Subscription levels = reduced churn 

We tackled the reading level problem by developing a second subscription product for a younger age group (4-6 years 0ld).

This in itself has helped to massively reduce churn, with 30-40% of new customers signing up for this level. We also eliminated the 1 month plan & reduced our subscription price to be more inclusive for a wider range of families. 

Live flow


Following landscape analysis and feedback from our customers, we adapted our subscription sign-up flow to encourage new customers to sign-up for Banjo birthday messages, choose the appropriate time and level of subscription and get a special cuddly toy for their little one.

Making the flow simple, diverse, fun and customisable for gift opportunities

New flows

1. Adapting to the gift first approach

We are currently experimenting with new flows for our Toy First subscription process. Banjo toy’s will be placed in stores with a gift card to redeem a subscription online.

Sketching the new flow in Figjam