Chris Roos by Chris Roos

Week 532

We’ve been focussed on Mission Patch this week although we’ve continued to spent a fair amount of time on business development.

As a team without a boss we have no single person to tell us how to decide which of a number of competing priorities (e.g. business as usual, business development, Mission Patch) we should focus on. In order to help us focus, and to help provide a bit of motivation, we’ve trialled having daily standups. I think they’re working quite well and hope we continue with them.

Mission Patch

We started the week with a planning session. We got rid of the post-its representing work our past-selves had imagined would be useful, and started afresh with the idea that feature development probably isn’t the most important thing to do. We came up with a small number of tasks that we agreed we’d complete during the week. It wasn’t a particularly ambitious set of tasks but I think this is better than trying to overcommit given that we know there are going to be other non-Mission Patch priorities that require our time and attention during the week.

Our overall goal was/is to reach people that are similar to our existing customers but that have never heard of Mission Patch. This is not something I (nor I think, we) have any real experience of so I’m very happy to be able to do it within the support structure of our organisation.

In no particular order these are the things we’ve achieved this week:

  • Designed and printed some leaflets and have started identifying and contacting product-related conferences that we can sponsor.

  • Had lunch with GFR-friend, Tom Taylor, who kindly shared some of his experiences from Newspaper Club.

  • Made it easier to share your mission patch designs via Twitter, Facebook and email. We’ve noticed people doing this already and think/hope this’ll make it easier for others to do the same.

  • Embedded tweets on the homepage to highlight some of the positive things people have said about Mission Patch. The idea is to give new users some confidence that this is a real thing that people are using.

  • Improved the checkout page to better describe/differentiate the products we’re selling, and to promote the most popular option of 24 stickers.

  • Added some analytics tracking to try to help us understand how people are using the designer. In the hope that it helps us identify improvements we can make. We’re using Mixpanel and I was particularly pleased to see that they respect the Do Not Track header.

  • Refactored some of the Elm code that had become a bit unwieldy after introducing the emoji search functionality.

And a couple of things we’re continuing to work on:

  • Improving categorisation of the emojis. We’re using the default unicode categories which we don’t find particularly friendly.

  • Integrating Intercom so that it’s easier for people to get in touch with us.

I’m really pleased with how it’s coming along. Check it out in the screencast below.

Mission Patch screencast from Free Range on Vimeo.

Business Development

Ben did a great job of working with some potential collaborators to get a DOS application into shape this week. Thanks, Ben!

We’re currently speaking to a number of people about potential projects but haven’t agreed to anything yet. Get in touch if you think you might have a project we can help with.

Until next time.

– Chris

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