Behavioural and needs based segmentation of an emerging US market


Our client, an established digital payments provider in Europe, saw an opportunity for their digital wallet product in the emerging legalisation of online gambling in the US.


This was a research and recommendation project that focused on segmenting the emerging US market and identifying behaviours and mindsets around online gambling, which led to a recommendation of the target segment with the most needs to explore with digital wallet features. This led to a follow up project in experience and product design. See Part 2.


3 months


Qualitative Research
Affinity Mapping
Secondary Market Research
Competitive Experience Audits
CX Journey Mapping
Jobs to be Done
Behavioural Segmentation

"Define the emerging audience, their expectations, their unmet needs and the white space opportunity in the market."

We defined 3 mental models with a blend of market context, audience insights and search intelligence.


The biggest challenges in this project were first understanding the nuances of US payment trends, particularly the affinity to credit cards due to rewards points and the high credit card payment rejection rate on online gambling websites.

As legalisation was only just starting to take place and not consistent across the states, even gamblers in legal states who tried to make an online payment to a gambling website with their credit cards experienced their banks rejecting the payment up to 60% of the time.

While this created a huge opportunity for a digital wallet to bypass this barrier, convincing a US customer to try a digital wallet instead of their regular credit card or PayPal required a significant value exchange.


In our interviews we uncovered 11 archetypes across 3 behavioural segments. While the archetypes defined the various and fluid mental models of the emerging US gamblers, the behavioural segments represented the main motivations, needs and level of engagement that exists in the market.


We validated our segments with search intelligence data and identified the target segment for our client based on intent and spend ratio. This target segment had gamblers who were frequent, habitual bettors who budgeted for this lifestyle. They had more needs to be explored by product design but by catering to this segment, we could also create a strong product for the other segments with crossover needs.

My role in the project


I partnered with a senior experience strategist and a project manager to translate interview insights into behavioural patterns. This resulted in segmentation and identifying unmet needs as market opportunities.


I conducted a thorough audit of the experience compared to competitors we learned the audience were leaning towards and provided a view to our client they didn’t have.


Working closely with our researcher and senior strategist in the analysis of secondary research papers, I helped understand current trends and their drivers.

What I learned on this project

One of my key learnings from this project was how important it is to read between the lines of what people say they do.

There is an inherent stigma around problem gambling and this causes a lot of interviewees to self report their spend habits on the lighter side of the truth. By crafting questions that ask the same thing in multiple ways, we can paint a more accurate picture.

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