Creating a Mental Health App Like HeadSpace: How to, Process, etc.

Mental health appBy creating hundreds of guided meditations on various topics, Headspace has been able to create a mental health app experience that is both powerful and widely appealing.

In order to create such an app, one must look at how Headspace has done it so far and try to replicate those methods in creating a similar product for mental health purposes.






What Is Headspace?


Headspace is a meditation app that helps users learn and improve mental health by creating customized guided meditations for particular problems or interests. With over 180 million users, Headspace has made itself one of the most influential meditation apps on the market today.  Because there are so many ways to learn about and improve mental health, creating an app platform that allows for this is beneficial to users.

To understand how Headspace has been so successful in creating a meditation app, one needs to look at the process by which it was created.



How Did Headspace Start?


Headspace began as a book written by Andy Puddicombe. The book was written as a way for Puddicombe to improve his own mental health after suffering from depression and anxiety symptoms. After writing the book, Puddicombe found that it helped improve others’ mental health as well when practicing meditation at home.  In order to take this experience to the next level, Puddicombe and co-founder Rich Pierson created an app that would create a standardized meditation environment.

When creating this app, it was important to make sure each program offered in the app proved effective and beneficial in improving mental health.  This is why creating programs such as 10% Happier was important for creating an app that provides value to its users.

The most popular program offered is the 10% Happier program, which many customers and reviewers agree has been beneficial in creating daily meditation habits.  Because Puddicombe himself struggled with addiction and depression when he first began meditating, his programs often have more of a personal connection for users.

While creating the app was important, the personalized meditation experience is what makes Headspace truly unique in its field.  Because building programs through a standardized process has been shown to be both valuable and effective in creating positive changes, it’s safe to say that developing an effective mental health app will have similar results as Headspace has.



Keeping A Standard For Meditation Programs


When making a mental health app, creating various programs that are useful and beneficial to specific problems is essential for an effective application.  By creating personal programs like 10% Happier, the meditation experience presented in the app becomes much more personalized and true to its users’ interests. Similarly, creating programs that are much more specific and targeted for different issues related to mental health would offer users a wide variety of meditation experiences through an application.



How to Create an App Like HeadSpace


In order to create such programs, determining which type of meditation works best for specific problems is essential in building such an application.


Step #1 : Research

The most important thing in creating a mental health app like Headspace is research. Conducting research on the various ways meditation can improve mental health is essential.  By looking at how creating meditation-based programs helps improve mental health, you will likely increase the chance that the application will be used.


Step #2 : Create Programs

Based on the research done, creating programs that target specific needs for improving mental health is important.  This can be done from creating a customized program like 10% Happier or with more specific programs for developing meditative habits, improving focus or having a general “chill out” mood through meditation.


Step #3 : Create A Great Visual Design

The incorporation of great visuals is also important for the success of such an application.  Creating great visuals can be done by hiring high-quality designers who can create a great user experience that is both attractive and intuitive to use.


Step #4 :  Provide Feedback Loops

Another important aspect of mental health apps is receiving feedback is by having a personalized meditation tailored to the individual’s needs. By creating feedback loops to better understand how users use the app, you can receive a great deal of helpful information.  This type of feedback loop is essential in creating an application that will be used consistently by its users.


Step #5 : Testing

Testing the application is essential to creating a mental health app like Headspace. By giving the program to users and collecting feedback based on their experiences, you can figure out what needs to be improved on.  Along with traditional app testing methods by developers, many companies launch beta versions of their apps before launching the final product. At the same time, creating different programs can take into account user preference when creating meditation programs that target specific problems in order to create the most effective programs.


Step #6 :  Promote And Market The Application

Once your app is ready, promote it! Creating buzz through marketing is important for generating positive results. Read up on articles that give tips on how to properly promote your app in the app stores and elsewhere. Make sure you have a set marketing budget for this so you do not overspend.


Step #7 :  Make Sure To Keep Improving The App

Creating an app to improve mental health is not finished once an app has been launched.  Make sure to keep improving the application in the future based on users’ needs.



Cost To Develop a Mental Health App


The cost of developing a mental health app can be anywhere from $20,000 to $50,000 per program you create. Of course, this depends on many factors. These factors include the type of app you’re creating, your market reach and more.  This is a good general range for creating programs, which can help you to guesstimate the average cost of your app. It’s also important that once a program has been created, it will require further development every couple years or so as technology improves and society changes.



The Future of Mental Health Apps


The future of creating a mental health app like HeadSpace looks bright. Apps are highly customizable and can help improve mental health. If creating and marketing an effective app can be done, the future of mental health apps such as HeadSpace is limitless.


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