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Answering your Q’s: Bring Customer Suggestions Directly Into ProdPad

Posted by Janna Bastow
September 29, 2014

For a product manager, all different sources of feedback and new product iteration are important. And that’s just as true for us as it is for you.

In another meta-example of us product managing the product management process, I wanted to share another great suggestion from one of our users – Michael – for bringing customer ideas more closely into the idea management process.

“I would love to see a Customer portal to be able to allow a customer to enter in ideas based off a series of questions. Today we have over 2000 customers that have great ideas but the only way to bring them in is by email. I would love if they would be able to enter an idea into the system but not have access like employees do today. Just a thought.”

Now this is a great idea. Whether future evolutions of the ProdPad platform would take quite this form isn’t possible to say today, but it’s certainly in-line with our vision for customer involvement in product management.

While we don’t currently support this kind of direct customer interaction in ProdPad, there are a few ways in which you can use the platform to support customer involvement in the idea management process. While we carry on collecting feedback like Michael’s to devise the most effective ways to invite customer feedback, you can make use of ProdPad’s integrations with the tools your customers already use.

1. Integrate with UserVoice

UserVoice is a customer service tool for gathering ideas and supporting large groups of external users, where they can suggest ideas and vote them up so that it’s easier to see what’s popular. The integration with ProdPad allows you to ‘push’ those popular ideas to ProdPad where they can be fleshed out more and pushed on to development. As the ideas are worked on, we report back to your users in UserVoice so they get feedback too on progress being made. However, you choose how this status mapping works and the ins and outs of that progress is reserved for your team only – keeping product development appropriately internal.

2. Integration with email/forms/etc. via Zapier

Zapier is a tool that hooks up dozens of different services, and ProdPad is just one of those services. Others include basic email, web forms (like Google forms or Wufoo) and many more. When you’ve chosen a good match through Zapier, you can set up an integration that allows end customers to email in or add feedback via a form, which will be added to ProdPad automatically. This again keeps the detail of what’s happening in ProdPad private, but allows them to submit ideas or feedback directly via whatever channel both you and they prefer that they use.

So, try out one of these methods to seek out more feedback from your customers. And if you have suggestion for us too, there are a few different ways you can get your idea into our very own ideas list. You can send us an email, you can engage with us in-tool using the ‘Get in touch’ button (handily hooked up with Intercom.io), or you can even leave your thoughts on this problem in the comments below!

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