“It definitely is one of those products. Where like i still can t believe it it didn t already exist after all the tools and software sas everything like analytics. These probably like it just wasn t like when i was digging deep into what you re doing like before when i you know heard more about and i m like how does that not exist. It s because the like when you really dig into it it s not that surprising.
But anyone you ask on a surface level. Everyone s like hot wait. This has to exist got it it s like no it doesn t exist. There are things like it that smell like it you know.
But the execution is what matters here you know so for anyone you know parlor. We described as this all in one discovery platform. It s essentially the goal is to allow product leaders or product teams to proactively engage their end users in what we call their discovery efforts and so when we say discovery. It s like this catch.
All term that encompasses all of the different efforts you might engage a user population with in order to determine what matters. Most to them what their needs are and what you need to build for them. And whether you should build the things you re thinking about building roadmap validation. So need discovery and roadmap validation and the goal is to do it in such a way that you actually ingratiate your product team to the people that actually spend time and money building using your product namely because they feel like they actually have a say in the future direction of where this product may go so they feel deeply invested in and because they actually can in some light way control the destiny of the product by working really closely so at a high level.
We re trying to unite the people on both sides of the product those building it and those using it around the improvement of that product. So when that s essentially what the product is when you look at its you know it s really interesting when you ask any random person on the street. How many pieces of software do you use in your life..
Think about all the ones you use for work email apps. And chat apps and scheduling apps and every piece of software you use to do your job. All the ones you used make your life. Easier more convenient uber and lyft and every gig economy.
App. You use imagine all every website use is a product. It s a digital product think about all the apps you use to stay in touch with your friends snapchat instagram. Facebook and a lot of people are using products to meet new friends tinder bumble.
You name it the average american is using about 30 unique pieces of software. Every single month. Now to people like you and i that work in this space or at least around the tech space that is a fraction of what we use every single month. Sure now take a moment and think about the last time that someone who s actually capable and responsible for improving any one of those products.
You use got in touch with you. And asked you for your feedback on something they were thinking about working on our changing. Not a marketing person not a sales person trying to get you to upgrade not a support person trying to get you to rate them on a scale of one to ten someone who is from the product team that can actually change your experience in a meaningful way can you recall it happening once no never never happened in my your life either. It s never happened and i do this for a living.
I leave product in for a living. I can give great free advice and no one s ever asked me that s craziness and so when you look at that it s like wait how is that not the case well because on one hand. You have a bunch of introverts..
Who said who builds software design software and they say well it s you know talking to users is scary and hard and painful so i m gonna build analytics platforms that allow me to see trends at a higher level which is actually more impactful and that way i can hide behind my computer not talk to anybody. And because those continue to not be bad impactful now you hear people making predictive analytics platforms right because the analytics platform is not helping us not make shitty software and then you have this whole other bucket of customer support. Where we re like let s hire the cheapest resource. We can recent college graduates from liberal arts schools let s put them on a customer support team over in that office over there and let s call them customer success or customer experience.
So they feel better about their role and let s that s a scalable resource. They re cheaper compared to our pm s or our designers or engineers or any of other things so we feel like that s a scalable resource. So what happens we set up a ticking system or a live chat system and everything a user wants to talk to us about we send to them. But 40 at least that s what it was a firecracker of every conversation that goes to them is about something they actually can t do anything about without triaging.
It to somebody else and so you say that is completely ridiculous. Why can t we directly connect people on both sides of these products. Why can t we unburden support by taking all non product related conversations out of that live chat flow and instead putting it directly to the people whose job. It is to make decisions to improve.
These people whose experience and the problem is there s so much you know sort of preset thought about how this work should be done. There are so many teams planning 12 month roadmaps without talking to users. There s so many teams that already have a live chat tool. There s so many teams that are relying on just staring at an analytics platform drooling out the side of their mouth.
And so the our challenge is how do you educate these people. That there s a completely different approach to this one that significantly d risk your efforts by helping. You validate..
The impact of the things you should work on before you ever work on them. But at the same time deeply invest your user population into your product because they feel like they actually can talk to someone who can improve it your just the nature of your feedback collection feels like a service to them that allows their voice to be heard more than just they re invested beyond what their monthly or annual subscription cost is so that s the whole idea behind parler. There s a lot to do here. It s a huge problem to solve every product team that has a user needs a better solution to this and our thing is gonna be all about education can we do what hubspot did and teach these product teams that there is a modern way to approach your user population beyond buying you know the marketing world it was buying radio ads television ads cold calling direct mailing products like hubspot came in and totally disrupted that there s a new way that people shopping buy we think.
It s going to be the exact same way for this product side. How do we completely disrupt the way that teams are building software. The old fashioned way where you have no respect for your users. And don t think you hear this quote all the time.
If i ask my users what they wanted they would have said faster horses that s that s oh. It s contributed to henry ford with the model t yeah. Yeah. Because if you ask your users.
What they want they don t know what to say. But if you prompt them with a better question that you can actually get really interesting conversation. So yeah. I know we keep saying how did we look upon this that this is here.
But it is a huge problem to solve and figuring out how to solve it within the context of how teams currently approach this work that s the challenge. ” ..
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“In this video, Keith Frankel – Co-Founder u0026 CEO of Parlor, shares the details on this company s all-in-one feedback and discovery software for digital product teams. Parlor is backed by Bain Capital.nnThis segment originally appeared on The VentureFizz Podcast. You can catch the full podcast episode here: nnhttps://venturefizz.com/stories/boston/venturefizz-podcast-keith-frankel-co-founder-and-ceo-parlor”,
Keith Frankel, The VentureFizz Podcast, VentureFizz, Keith Cline, Parlor, Parlor.io, Product Management, Bain Capital Ventures