Finding T-Mobile’s North Star

Client: T-Mobile

Services: Digital Strategy, Competitive Audit, Card Sort, Tree Test, Quantitative and Qualitative User Testing, Focus Groups

Finding T-Mobile’s North Star

Kumu Agency recently completed a digital transformation strategy and user experience research project with T-Mobile’s Consumer Insights and Digital teams to help them have a deeper understanding of how to transform their digital strategy to increase and continue to build their competitive advantage.


T-Mobile is one of the leading phone carriers in the United States, with growing services and products coming with the 5G revolution. It’s leading strength has been it’s unique brand positioning and delivery of creating multiple firsts, including the first to allow you to break a contract, the first unlimited data plan, the first North America unlimited data and roaming plan, and many other disruptions that have given them an unfair advantage and rapid growth in the category. T-Mobile is the UnCarrier, not your typical grey faceless wireless carrier. So, how could we uncover insights into telling this unique story through digital channels, while balancing key insights around their brand story, while improving their overall usability and experience?


Being “in agency” for a brand means you have the very unique ability to see a brand holistically across channels and provide an integrated view across departments from a customer-led viewpoint. As we embarked on our initial discovery work, we felt we had some key insights that we proposed we could test through usability testing and focus groups. In addition, we could see some strong opportunities to improve workflows and processes amongst the teams. Most importantly, we realized we could work with their executive marketing team to identify some of the key barriers, surface key issues and then propose a digital strategy that frames and fosters innovation going forward.


Together with the T-Mobile team, we had some initial insights and hypotheses, and we wanted to gain consensus and to validate these observations. We proposed extensive stakeholder interviews across the digital and consumer insights teams to understand process, tactics and to gain alignment with evolving strategic plans. The first step of our 6 month project was stakeholder interviews, then we undertook a heuristic audit and competitive analysis, across mobile and desktop websites to determine where there might be opportunities to grow, and strengths to build on. In addition we did navigation testing, and extensive quantitative and qualitative testing. From those insights we worked with our client teams to develop a Customer First Strategy for an omnichannel brand framework, providing detailed recommendations and insights to the team reporting into the CMO. One of the key learnings was building off of something T-Mobile did really well, and continuing that strength through their digital transformation strategy – understanding how customers both think and feel. Which meant highlighting the important brand points of difference in a commodity category, while helping customers “get jobs done.”