Sightly Case Study

The problem


Mental health struggles are personal, unique to a patient’s circumstances, and can’t be treated with a one-size-fits-all approach. However, it can be challenging and expensive to access traditional psychiatric care, and many apps geared at mental healthcare do not offer adequate personalization.

The Sightly app


To solve this problem, founders Julian Divito and Karan Ballal sparked the idea for Sightly. I joined their team before launch as a UX Writer and Content Strategist. The goal of Sightly is to offer truly individualized mental health programs, based on CBT principles, that help users address the root cause of their negative emotions. 


Currently, the app offers several customizable mental health tools and one full program guided by a psychologist, focused on overcoming anxiety. In the future, the library will be expanded to include several more programs focused on both common mental health topics and the life circumstances that cause them, such as a bad breakup or the death of a loved one. 

My role


To prepare for launch, I worked first on Sightly’s landing page, revising the existing placeholder copy to clearly communicate the app’s benefits and offerings. Then, I used research to develop copy for the onboarding flow and all tools currently available to users in this iteration of the app. In this case study, I will discuss my work on the landing page, the onboarding flow, and the goal-setting tool that is available to users immediately upon sign-up.

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Jump to prototype

The landing page


My work on the Sightly landing page helped me familiarize myself with the voice and vision of the app. Since the primary goal is to offer truly personalized mental health support, I used that as a springboard to develop brand principles for all future copy.


Sightly users download the app because they’re struggling with mental health, and they want to feel supported, respected, and seen. Since traditional mental health care often requires patients to navigate complicated bureaucracies, it was also important for Sightly to be easy to use and offer quick relief to symptoms.


Thus, I decided Sightly’s voice should be:

  • Supportive, kind, and never condescending. Users may be in a vulnerable place when they use Sightly, so it’s imperative that they feel emotionally supported by the app. Through showing respect for the user, trust is built and anxiety is assuaged.

  • Knowledgeable, but NOT stiff or formal. Users should trust that the help they’re receiving is credible and informed by expert scientific research, but they should never feel confused by complicated jargon. Psychological principles should be explained in “laymen’s terms” that anyone can understand.

  • Specific, yet expansive. Sightly’s programs are intended to feel personal, but each individual user comes to the app with different life experiences and circumstances. Content should be specific to real psychological research while maintaining broad applicability. 


Using these principles, I developed Sightly’s tagline: 


Therapist-led programs sparked by real-life topics

We’re making it easy for everyone to get personalized help for their mental health


Through emphasizing “therapist-led,” I aimed to inspire trust in the app’s expertise. The mention of “real-life topics” enforces that the app is “personalized.” Finally, users are promised a seamless, “easy” experience using the programs, assuaging anxiety. 

The prototype


After completing the landing page copy, I began work on the Sightly prototype. Drawing from my brand principles, I suggested the use of sentence case for almost all content to maintain a friendly, informal tone. However, I left standard button copy in all-caps due to the short length of the content, and I used title case for buttons that include images because the spacing of certain lines made sentence case look awkward.

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Sign-up screen, before

Sign-up screen, after

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What I did

  • Changed “Signup” to “Sign up” to be grammatically correct

  • Addressed redundancies between the prompts and the helper text so the helper text offers additional guidance rather than just reiterating the prompt

  • Changed “Full Name” to “Username” to allow the user flexibility in how they are addressed and assuage potential anxiety about how the app might use real personal information

  • Changed the H1 to sentence case for consistency across screens

Dashboard, before

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Dashboard, after

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What I did

  • Altered copy from “How’re you feeling?” to “How are you feeling?” to avoid an awkward and uncommon contraction

  • Noted as a style guideline that “check in” is the verb form and “check-in” is the adjective or noun form

  • Noted for the team that it’s not intuitive from this screen how to subscribe to a program. I was informed that pilot users of the app will be auto-subscribed to the first program, Overcoming Anxiety, and the dashboard will be adjusted with my feedback in mind when more programs exist.

  • Changed “Quick & Easy” to “Daily habits” to clarify expectations and offer guidance on how often to use tools, and also switched from title case to sentence case for consistency

Check-in task, before

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Check-in task, after

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What I did

  • Changed all copy except buttons to sentence case for consistency and readability (note: “Happy” is currently in title case due to an issue on the developer’s end, will be resolved before launch)

  • Proposed a third row of emotions to the “I’m feeling…” screen: “Thoughtful,” “Overwhelmed,” and “Other,” which allows users to write in an emotion that may not be listed, allowing for deeper personalization

  • Proposed adding an “Other” option to the third screen so, again, users can speak to their circumstances in more specifics if desired

  • Expanded copy on the third screen to offer more support and guidance for the task, explaining the purpose of the exercise to the user and emphasizing that the written reflection is optional

  • Added a “skip” button to the third screen so that users who do not wish to write a reflection can move on seamlessly

  • Expanded copy on the final screen to offer further reassurance to the user about the benefits of the task, and also provide instructions for accessing past check-in entries

Goal-setting task, before

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Goal-setting task, after

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What I did

  • Expanded microcopy on the first two screens of the task to include the psychological rationale for each step and offer greater guidance and support to the user

  • Added reference to long-term goals early in the exercise, so the user is prepared to make the shift when prompted soon after

  • Revised microcopy on screens 4 and 5 to be clearer, more specific, and more concise

  • Deleted the original third screen and changed button copy on screen 2 to read "I'm ready" so the user has more agency to pace the exercise themselves, as opposed to clicking through a screen that is essentially a placeholder adding no new information

  • Added closing copy about the psychological benefits of regular goal-setting

Next steps

Currently, Sightly’s programs are informed by research into psychological principles, as well as interviews with people who suffer from anxiety. However, there has not yet been an opportunity to test the app on users, meaning that the user needs we’ve pinpointed remain somewhat anecdotal. In the future, I would recommend a new series of interviews with people who suffer from anxiety that includes their responses to Sightly’s tools and programs. Sightly is set to launch in April 2022, and I will return to this case study with updates when more data is available to me.