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Product update: points and challenges

After a long delay and living with a half implemented and deactivated points system, we’ve finally pushed out the first iteration. So far, it includes a points system for the actions we want our users to do most, and a few challenges. Just looking at the past few days data since it was pushed, our user engagement has gone up significantly. Let’s see how it does in the next couple weeks.  

Screen_shot_2011-09-15_at_5
Screen_shot_2011-09-15_at_5

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Product update: messaging system added

Last week we added the ability for food bloggers to see who their biggest fans were by vote and by favourited. We also added a ‘send thx’ button (that led to a popup saying feature will be added soon) to see if they were interested in engaging with their fans, and we were happy to see that many of them were. So yesterday, we added a messaging feature to allow our users to interact with each other. We are starting with a blogger initiated message off their fan page, but will be adding it to various spots in the app as well for exchanges that are initiated by the user. Let’s see how this goes. The messaging system only took about a day to build since its a simplified version of the WoC messaging system, and we were able to borrow a lot of the interaction designs from facebook’s messaging system (although the look can definitely use some help).  Here are a couple of screenshots.

Screen_shot_2011-09-03_at_11
Screen_shot_2011-09-03_at_11
Screen_shot_2011-09-04_at_12
Screen_shot_2011-09-04_at_12

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AARRR – Acquisition, Activation, Retention, (Revenue), Referral

Kevin has been using mixpanel to track our retention. We`ll keep an eye out on the data.

Acquisition – How do our new players find us?

  • S – stumbleupon, reddit (#)
  • F – facebook, m.facebook (#)
  • T – twitter, t.co (#)
  • E – our email blast, about 200 a week (#)
  • B – foodbloggers website (#)
  • O – organic, seo, google, yahoo, bing (#)
  • B – Bounce Rate (%)

Activation – New and Returning players, how long do they stay?

  • Total Visits (100%)
  • 5 Pages (%)
  • 25 Pages (%)
  • 5 Minutes (%)
  • Sign Ups (%)
  • Outbound Links to foodblogs where the recipe resides (%)

Retention – When do players return back? (We drip email them 1days, 3days, 7days, 7days, 7days…)

  • 0 day (100%)
  • +1 day
  • +2-3 days
  • +4-7 days
  • +1 week
  • +2 week
  • +3 week

Referral

  • FoodBlogs – Blog Entry
  • Twitter – Retweets
  • Facebook – Wall Message

Img00934-20110827-1923

 

 

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Product updates

Its been a while since I’ve posted about product updates, so here we go.

First up, we have a new nav courtesy of Twitter Bootrap. Its clean and has everything I need.

Screen_shot_2011-08-27_at_6

A common feedback we got from test users was that they didnt really ‘get’ the site until after they’ve completed a bunch of votes. So our first attempt to remedy this issue was to add a short description/tag line on the front page, and also add a most popular summary section to the top of the home/votes page so they kind of get whats going on. We still have not added the tag line 😛

Screen_shot_2011-08-27_at_6

We added the ability for users to favourite recipes, a feature that’s been lacking compared to other food porn sites.

Screen_shot_2011-08-27_at_6

A couple of bloggers had mentioned that they would like to see who’d favourited or voted for their dishes. This could be a good starting point to initiate exchanges among our users, which we think can improve retention and is also the direction we want to move towards. Having Knapkins become more of a community site than a content site. This feature is also another differentiating factor from our competitors.  The send thx feature will be implemented later on (just tracking the clicks for now).

Screen_shot_2011-08-27_at_6
Screen_shot_2011-08-27_at_6

We’ve automated our drip campaign emails, new photo added emails, and tweets. The emails have been very effective in terms of bringing users back, and twitter surprising has been a good source of traffic for us.

We finally added real ads from Adsense, as opposed to the fake manual ones we had before.  It actually took a lot less time to setup the real way! Lesson learned. Fake and implement later is not always the quickest and best way to do things.

Screen_shot_2011-08-27_at_6

I’m apparently a target for vidcaster and airbnb.

Finally, we’ve added mixpanel to our analytics arsenal so that we can better track our cohort retention. I like them so far. We’ve also made some additions to our app so that we can better track retention from our own data as well. More fine grain things that is outside of mixpanel, but hopefully, their app can cover most use cases as pulling manual reports from our db is not the funest thing to do. The game plan though is for us to really step up the analytics side of things and tie it directly to our product development. Have it drive and also validate/measure our development efforts.  Christine will talk more on this subject soon.

 

 

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Testing Email Content

3

A) Email with “Hey Foodie”

  • Find: 75 email address (30 minutes)
  • Mail Merge: 75 email address & 75 blog url (18 minutes)
  • Quantity: 75 emails sent (TOTAL 30+18=48 minutes)
  • Sent around noon
  • utm_source=foodbloglis_noname
  • utm_medium=email
  • utm_campaign=Aug3Blogger
  • Subject Line: “Love your blog at _________!”      
  • Main “Hey Foodie, Love your blog at _________!  We were wondering if we can feature it on our Knapkins. In July, we launched a new network to showcase the most delicious dishes created by a community of passionate foodies and food bloggers. Come by and play a game of ‘food duel’, or take a look at our top dishes of the week and get inspired with new recipe ideas. Once you submit your foodblog, we will automatically add photos from your new blog entries and notify you once its ready. Easy, eh? Click here to submit your foodblog www.Knapkins.com/signup/blogger Cheers, Christine & The Knapkins Team”

STATISTICS: 

  • 52 visits 
  • 13.61 pages viewed
  • 4:41mins time on site
  • 21 signups / 75 emails (28%)

RESULTS: 

  • It took 2:30mins to result in 1 signup
  • Estimated total foodbloggers: 10,000
  • Extrapolation: 2,800 signups
  • Time taken up: 107hrs

B) Email with “Hey Kristin”

  • Find: 75 email address and first name (66 minutes)
  • Mail Merge: 75 email address & 75 blog url & first name (22.5 minutes)
  • Quantity: 75 emails sent (TOTAL 66+22.5=88.5 minutes)
  • Sent around noon
  • utm_source=foodbloglist
  • utm_medium=email
  • utm_campaign=Aug3Blogger
  • Subject Line: “Love your blog at _________!”      
  • Main “Hey _________, Love your blog at _________!  We were wondering if we can feature it on our Knapkins. In July, we launched a new network to showcase the most delicious dishes created by a community of passionate foodies and food bloggers. Come by and play a game of ‘food duel’, or take a look at our top dishes of the week and get inspired with new recipe ideas. Once you submit your foodblog, we will automatically add photos from your new blog entries and notify you once its ready. Easy, eh? Click here to submit your foodblog www.Knapkins.com/signup/blogger Cheers, Christine & The Knapkins Team”

STATISTICS:  

  • 81 visits
  • 14.16 pages viewed
  • 4:15mins time on site
  • 26 signups / 75 emails (35%)

RESULTS:  

  • It took 3:25mins to result in 1 signup
  • Estimated total foodbloggers: 10,000
  • Extrapolation: 3,500 signups
  • Time taken up: 198hrs

 

CONCLUSION A is 1.85 times faster than B and takes (198-107) 91hrs less work, but we’d miss out on 1,867 of 10,000 foodbloggers. Based on this trade off, I choose A.  I think with time/branding that we may be able to re-engage that missing 7% (35%-28%). There are so many factors that we haven’t considered – like combinations of A+B, actual # of foodbloggers, referrals/viral, automation, buying emaillist etc…

My head hurts. 5:00am and Math DO NOT mix well together…zzzz

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    Noob Guide: Content Management – #13 Start a corporate blog & give your knowledge away for free

    To start a blog and give away knowledge, I decided to focus on providing value by giving away photography tips… specifically food photography tips. Having now reviewed over 2,100 photos (and tagged them grrrr…) I noticed some really big discrepancy in the quality of photos. So I’m hoping this blog will give foodbloggers some ideas. Given summer time, I made the first topic: “Ice Cream Photography”. However, I am NOT an expert in photography. So I researched the topic online, though experts and books. I created “Five Tips and Tricks for Ice Cream Photography”. My format moving forward would be: a topic (ice cream), text (x5 tips), icons for garnishes (+9 photos), icons for props (+9 photos) and icons for types (+9 photos). For the photos I tied the content back to Knapkins, I repurposed 27 ice cream photos from our site used them to provide visuals. I made sure to include the photo credits. I added some funny branding like using the spoon in our logo and a ‘k’napkin as possible props. Napkin is spelled wrong, but that okay with me!  I added a CC for common creative license. Honestly, I’m not sure what it means but its seems like it would allow people to share the content as long as we are given credit. At the end of the day, if someone wants to steal the content, they will and we won’t take any legal action. I did a second blog entry on “Drink Photography”. It took me about a day to do both entries. See below. 

    1. Freeze your dish. Reduce melting so you can take a great photo. Plastic wrap the glass to prevent frosting.
    2. Odd is best. One or three scoops look great.
    3. Add a collar. Make a ruffle around your ice cream scoop with a small butterknife.
    4. Show texture. Parallel ridges in ice cream texture is called barking. Barking is gooood.
    5. Thicken your sauce. Add corn syrup to make chocolate sauce thicker.

     Garnish: Chocolate, Cinnamon Stick, Fruit/Citrus, Flower Ice Cubes, Mint, Nuts, Rim Topping, Sprinkles, Whipped Cream

    FrameChocolateFruitMintNutsSauceSprinklesWaffle_biscuitWhippedcreamZest

    Props: Fruit, Maker, Knapkin, Popsicle Stick, Scoop, Scrapbook paper, Topping Server, Spoon, Unique cup

    FrameFruitIcecreammakerKnapkinPopsiclestickScooperScarpbookpaperSpoonToppingserverUniquecup

    Types:  Bar, Cake, Cone, Milkshake, Pie, Popsicle, Sandwich, Sphere, Sundae

    FrameBarCakeConeMilkshakePhotoPopsicleSandwichSphereSundae

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    Scheduling Twitter Worldwide

    Today, Christine started scheduling manuel tweets that tags our food bloggers. Many of them have 100s and 1,000s of followers that know and are familiar with their brand. Our hope is to connect with these followers online and support our foodbloggers.   Kevin will eventually automate tweets as new dishes are added. This is a good way to broadcast current info.

    Hootsuite

    It took me about 1.5hrs to find our current foodblogger’s twitter handles and manually schedule 30 tweets. A challenge is that foodbloggers are worldwide like Singapore, UK, California. So Christine has to be conscious of their hometown time zones. Usually, it’s a good idea to leave 20 characters so people can retweet the entire link. Instead I’ve hashed some keywords at end of the tweet which are expendable. Here is a sample tweet:

     

    9:45am (EST here) / 8:45am (CSTIllinois)

    “Breakfast? Multigrain Pancakes by @naturallyella  View more of Erin’s dishes www.knapkins.com/duel?dish=181 #Illinois #foodie”