Why Companies Need to Iterate Based on User Feedback
Ryan Martens is the founder and CTO of Rally Software, which provides agile application lifecycle management solutions and services to software developers. Rally is Ryan’s fourth software startup. Follow him on Twitter @RallyOn.
Unfortunately, Twitter and Facebook have become real-time streams of rotten tomato throwing.
Just ask Bank of America, which encountered wrath from its Facebook customers when it decided to tack on monthly debit card fees. Or Virgin America, when its site crash and subsequent system failure ignited a blaze of ticked-off fliers.
We all know the drill: You’re supposed to listen to your customers in social media, engage them authentically, and act like the human you are, not the company you represent. But I’m here to add that engaging with customers after they start using your product isn’t enough. You simply can’t wait until customers start getting mad and yelling at you online to change your product or strategy. At that point, it’s too late.
Given the ability to reach customers and prospects via social networks, it’s now easier than ever to embrace customers in your product development process. Changing this process may not save you from the inevitable system failures, but it will help you avoid the slip-up phases typically associated with releasing new products or services.
Users rule the world now; therefore, businesses must be more responsive by using agile and lean practices. Here are three simple steps to guarantee the development of desirable products and services.