Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Slow Rollout

We'll start rolling out sometime today in the afternoon to existing Jawayans. I officially pronounce it ja-wy-a now because everybody else does for some reason (I really don't see it. Maybe too many pirate movies, folks?).

Tomorrow we'll roll out to a number of first-timers, and over the next week we'll roll out to about a thousand people. It's a slow launch of a private beta--not a lot of fanfare, approached with humility because we know what's missing, and expect to hear a lot from people.

Betas are great, and tough, and fulfilling, and challenging. The service works pretty well--it does what it's supposed to at its core. But the best is yet to come. We've come a long way with not very much investment, and have learned a lot along the way.

But you learn more by studying how people use the service, how they talk about it, what they don't use, how often they use it. You learn what works and what doesn't. What's relevant and useful.

You also learn to iterate quickly as people react and respond with disappointment that the Twitter feature is missing, or the privacy control sucks. You'll find some people care about privacy and others don't. You learn about the assumptions you made about the placement of every last pixel you worried about makes some people nauseous (yes, that literally happened with GiftWorks about 4 years ago).

The rest of this month will be about paying attention, listening, adjusting, iterating, and trying again. It's satisfying to finally get it wrapped up, but there's a long road ahead, so back to it--game on, again.

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