After approximately one and a half weeks’ worth of testing, we’ve wrapped the first phase of our Memoir Tree private beta. First, a massive “thank you” to our early testers. The experience was an incredible first look of our product “in the wild,” and in our opinion, it couldn’t have gone any better. We met with friends and strangers, alone and in groups, to watch them use our app. We sent our app to folks in remote locations, and asked them to “have at it.”
Responses ran the gamut. Some — pat our backs — could barely contain their excitement and used words like “love” and “can’t wait to use” to describe their feelings for our idea. They called the interface “easy to use,” and referred to the use of the app as a “no brainer.” They told us they wished they’d had Memoir Tree years ago, when a grandparent or parent was still alive. They pushed us to get a stable environment up and running so that they could start using Memoir Tree to gather stories now.
Then, there was the … how do I put this … constructive criticism. In cases like this, I had to watch red-faced and sweating as users asked me the hard questions:
- “What is this?”
- “I have no idea what to do here.”
- “What does this even mean?”
- “I would never pay for this.”
- “This layout makes no sense.”
And my favorite: “Petersen, you’re better than this.”
Through it all, we received an amazing motherlode of feedback that we have already begun to use to add and remove features. Let’s just say that our coders are loaded up on caffeine and suitably affixed to their chairs. Hopefully, those brave users who volunteered for Phase One will be suitably wowed by what we show them next.