10/31 Deployment – The Halloween Deployment
The thing about software development is every time you have a big new feature (or two big new features), you have bugs to kill. The beauty of our Kanban approach is that we can move quickly and adjust accordingly. We aim to get new features out the door as soon as possible so that customers can use them (often in ways we hadn’t even imagined), and then we respond quickly to address any issues they find. Believe you me, the old way of software development, where you sit and plan forever, and then code forever, and then run into problems and change your plans, and then realize your plans are already outdated, and then figure out that priorities have shifted and customers want something you hadn’t thought of, â€¦ it sucks.
This new way of get it out in the wild and let actual customers steer the ship — whether that’s finding bugs/issues or asking for features you hadn’t thought of — is far superior. So if you were wondering what we’ve been up to the last couple weeks, it was that — seeing customers use our new-and-incredibly-improved Contact Manager and Email Manager and gather their feedback.
In addition to bug fixes, I’m happy to report that two big pieces of customer feedback turned into two new features that are now in your hands. First, customers have told us that they make use of our custom fields in Contact Manager. Businesses segment their Contacts based on any number of things. Out of the box Optify gives you a number of useful fields about the Contact and his/her Company. But we couldn’t have possibly known that you care about their favorite animal (see screenshot above). Or their t-shirt size. Or their Halloween costume for tonight. We offered custom fields for you to capture this information via our Landing Pages or your own forms. But until today, you couldn’t filter based on these fields. Well now you can! And just like all the other fields, our filtering mechanism, built on Elastic Search, is incredibly fast, pulling up all your options in a second. If you have a few products you sell, ask customers which one they are interested in on your form, and create a custom field to capture that information. Then you can easily segment your Contacts based on whatever is most important to your business.
The second piece of feedback we got was that the Company information for Visitors and Leads that we retrieve on your behalf via Halloween black magic (I’d tell you, but I’d have to kill you) is extremely useful. You told us that you want more of it, meaning you want us to find that information more often and have it be more accurate, especially with your international visitors. So we struck up a new partnership with a small company called D&B that’s been in the business of providing a global commercial database for only aboutâ€¦ 170 years :) There’s more to come on this front in the coming months.
Lastly, one small but meaningful change. We used to have this page that I called “the parallel universe”. Essentially, we were able to take the functionality from that page and put it into the main Contact Manager page. Optify’s product team has 3 core principles: Simple, Insightful, and Actionable. Whenever we can get rid of something and simplify the user experience while not sacrificing a lick of functionality, we will do it. You don’t need more screens to deal with and tabs to page through. Right?
We absolutely love delivering new features, a better experience, and yes, even bug fixes that you might not have ever known about. The only thing we love more is hearing your feedback, so feel free to email us or leave a comment.