Digital ads simulation tool for digital marketing student, powered by AI

Novela is a startup that assists digital marketing learners in improving their skills through user-friendly tool. This is a brief case study showcasing how I collaborated with the founder to design this innovative product.


Product Designer



Novela wanted to help people to understand and apply digital marketing strategies with simulations that offer a realistic experience.

But why?

Digital marketing ads campaign is the skill that require analytical thinking to achieve optimal results. This job require lateral thinking, involving experimentation with various parameters and alternative keyword choices.

However, many students or newcomers solely acquire theoretical knowledge from the class or training. They face challenges implementing this knowledge when they have to run an actual ad campaigns, often resulting in frustration and financial losses.

Therefore Novela want to provide a solution for students and individuals seeking to implement marketing strategies. It offers user friendly simulation, facilitating practical application.

Design process

Quick insight:
When designing new product, it's always a good pratice to have deep understanding on project scope, business rules and technical constrains before doing any user research.

This informations is crucial to shape the design decision later on the research and exploration stages.

Understanding the business
and user empathy



Understanding the product and MVP user research

I started the project by having discussion with the founders to understand their business and their goals.

In the beginning, the founders also has build the quick MVP to show the concept and how it works. Collaborating with students and digital marketing professional, we tested this MVP, seeking their feedback, suggestions, insights and how to improve it so it can addressing their needs.

The MVP not only enhanced my understanding of digital marketing ad setup but also served as the starting point for me to understand content need it in the simulation.



User persona and key insights

Based on the previous research and discussion with the stakeholders. We now have more clear user persona we aim, we also found some key insight based on the user testing with MVP

Key Insights:

  1. New user who have little experience having hard time to understand how the simulation is working.
  2. Some users may randomly input data without fully comprehending the impact or significance of their entries.
  3. The amount of informations especially in the simulation result is overwhelming and confusing.

Design concept, exploration,
and user testing 

Design elements 
As now it's more clear for us who is the users, their expectation and their problem. We are now formulating on how we are going to design this tool so it can assist and guide users effectively.

To achieve this objective we come up with 4 design elements that should be available in the design: Scenarios, Exploration, Guided Learning, Gamification, and Simulation.

These design elements function as a framework on how we are shaping the UX/UI and guiding us to determine what features we need to have.

Information architecture and exploration

From those frameworks I then start doing an exploration for the user flow, UX, information architecture and UI.

This iterative process involved ongoing collaboration with the client, refining options until we get the most optimal result and ready for the clickable prototype for user testing.

Testing and iterate, testing and iteratate again
After the propotype is ready, we conducted multiple rounds of user testing and incorporated design iterations based on the feedback received.

Through this iterative process, we aimed to minimize user roadblocks, ensuring readiness for market release.


Final design

Page structure and style

The page structure and design style were deliberately crafted to minimize intimidation and reduce complexity. Our focus was on ensuring the visibility and clarity to help user to complete their task.

User dashboard

On user dashboard, users are presented with scenario and challenges to choose from upon their initial login. However, for the initial release, we've offered only one scenario.

Select keywords

The initial step for users is selecting relevant keywords to the product. We also incorporated tooltips for each terminology, ensuring users understand the meaning of every column.

Setup Biddings and Designing ads

The second and third steps involve users managing their keyword
bidding and designing ads. This process ensures the incorporation of selected
keywords to maximize the effectiveness of the ads

Customer insight

Powered by AI, Consumer Insight simulates real-life activities, where decision-making in keyword selection, bidding, and copywriting ads sometimes can be gathered from valuable customer insights. 

Simulation Result

This page displays the outcome of the simulation where users can review and analyze the performance of their ad campaign. Our focus was on presenting valuable information without overwhelming the user with excessive data

The product was successfully launched within one and a half months from the project's initiation, thanks to the close collaboration, openness, and swift responses from the founders and the team.

Currently adopted by leading institutions like Columbia Business School and Emirtus, further iterations are anticipated as the product evolves and expands.

For additional information, please visit LinkedIn or Novela Website

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