The best way to use your power of empathy is put yourself into their place. You must adopt their mental perspective, actively projecting yourself into the mind of your player. Trying to see what they see, hear what they hear, and think what they think.
You must think about people you have known who are in the target demographic and imagine what it is like to be them. Like a cultural anthropologist you should spend time with your target audience, talking with them, observing and imagining what it is like to improve. If you can do that, your designs will be able to include people that other designers have ignores.
We have to consider ways that groups of people are the same, groups demographics or market segments. Usually it are age and gender. We all play differently as we get older, and males and males as well; infant, preschooler, kids, pre-teen (tween), teen, young adult, twenties and thirties, thirties and forties, fifties and up.
Are how the app industry usually does it, because changes in user patterns. Most of the younger groups are separated by periods of mental development, while the older groups are primarily separated by family transitions.
To create apps for someone of a particular age, you must be in tune with the apps and themes that were popular when they were popular at a certain age; you must speak their language.
Stop think about your app and start thinking about your user.
What do they like? What don’t? Why?
That do they expect to see in an app?
If I were in their place, what would I want to see in an app? what would they like?
The ore you observe them paying, the more easily you’ll be able to predict what they are going to enjoy.
Demographics generally refer to external factors: age, gender, income, ethnicity, etc. But when we group people by these external factors, we are trying to get something internal: what each group finds pleasurable. Is to focus less on how users appear on the outside and more how they think on the inside.
Like “lifestyle choices, “dog lover”, “football fan”, “vegetarian”, “non binaries”, etc. You will naturally want to pay close attention to the preferences of each lifestyle groups.
They have more to do with what a person enjoys the most, the kid of pleasures they look for when participating in an activity; the motivation for every human action can be traced back to some kind of pleasure seeking.
Game designer Marc LeBlanc has proposed a list of eight pleasures that he considers the primary “game pleasures”:
Sensation: the aesthetics of your app that will deliver pleasures.
Fantasy: the service using your app, experience on that pleasure.
Narrative: sequence using your app.
Challenge: the core pleasures of using your app, since similar apps has the same problem to be solved.
Fellowship: everything is more enjoyable with your friends with cooperation and a community. Sometimes the pleasure being part of something.
Discovery: Allow users to design your own profile, discover new things every day.
Expression: Create things, achieve goals. Design new “outfits/skins”, advantages to “play” every day.
Submission: This is the pleasure of entering the magic circle, be part of something more, maybe a community, a club.
Using your app the user will fill many sensations: Anticipation (to the market, inflation, traffic, etc), Completion (number of solutions to users problems), Gift giving (surprise your users with gifts), Humor (don’t be a robot), Possibility (having many choices and knowing you could pick any one of them), Pride in an accomplishment (stay awake for needs of users), Surprise, Triumph over adversity (get alternatives in troubles times).
Also keep in mind that pleasure is very context sensitive and how can something be added.
Knowing your users intimately, more intimately than they know themselves, is the key to giving an app they will enjoy.