Melody Cheung

New Service - The Speaker Series

Host talks at home, hassle-free!

Nextdoor's Speaker Series

Conceptual Project

April, 2016

Business Goals

Nextdoor, a social network for neigbors, wants to increase user and community engagements by creating a program called the Speaker Series, a service that allows a community member to open up their homes to host talks by thought leaders.


I worked alongside with another teammate. My role was the UX designer with additional focus on UI & Visual Design.

Tools & Methods

Concept design; Interaction design for mobile app; Survey Design; User interviews; Affinity Mapping; Journey Mapping

User goals and needs

The dilemma between social needs & lack of resources

Preliminary survey shows that users are willing to host talks at home but worry that guests won't have a good time given the lack of time, resources and knowledge of hosting.


“It hurts to think that my guests are not enjoying my party!”

To better understand how to help hosts, we conducted 6 user interviews:

Interviewing Don
One of the interviewees was a chef who had been hosting dinner parties at home for a living for 3 years, we chose him because he had amazing insights in the pain points and knowledge of hosting at home. They helped us tremendously in creating our design.

Then, we used Affinity Mapping to synthesize data,

Nextdoor Affinity Mapping
Distilling data using Affinity Mapping

and we found 3 main painpoints & motivations:

  1. Forming deeper connection with neighbors over shared interest is the main motivation for hosting a community event at home.
  2. People have trouble managing logistics of hosting community events.
  3. People have anxiety over how to provide a delightful experience for guests.

Based on our synthesis, we created 2 personas -- Young future thought leader & Busy Working Professional, -- and

Young Future Thought Leader
Busy working professional

a Journey Map:


Our Solution

Our solution was to create a flow on the app that allows users to enjoy the intellectual exchange with thought leaders and neighbors without feeling anxious about the hosting itself.

Nextdoor App
Nextdoor Speaker Series App that assists hosts.

User Interface

All features designed to remove friction from hosting experience.


1. Search for Speakers based on Interests.

Research showed that interesting topic was the main reason for people to either host or attend a talk at home. Therefore, we designed the UI that allows users to search for a speaker by theme.

Nextdoor - choose theme
2. Event Creation Flow Designed to Address Users' Concerns.
Event Setup Flow
3. Pre-event Management Flow for Users to Keep Track of Updates and Action Items Before the Talk
Event Managment


4. Event Management UI During the Talk For Host to Stay Organized.
During the Talk

Future Plan

These are several future steps that Nextdoor can take to improve users’ experience even further:

1. New service: Dine with a thought leader
initial hesitation

To alleviate some uncertainties, we recommended an idea called “dine with a thought leader” where interested hosts can sign up to have a round table discussion with their desired speaker, because food always bring people closer together :-)!

2. Research on attendees.

We believe more research on the attendees will definitely increase the overall experience of Nextdoor’s Speaker Series.