We knew we wanted to go into 2016 working to deliver a new mobile app to our customers. We believed it should be in the realm of an email composer, since that is the heart of what AWeber does and was a missing element amongst our mobile apps.
We started throwing ideas against the wall. As a team, we kept circling back to some kind of basic composer concept; essentially a simpler version of the email editor our customers were using in the AWeber web app. Instead of continuing to debate it, we decided to take the idea to our customers in the form of a prototype. We chose to allow our customers to tell us directly what they wanted.
Prototype testing with our customers revealed their preference for creating content in a physically comfortable work space, which typically means on a computer. They told us the idea of composing a long-form email from scratch on a mobile device is unappealing for a number of reasons.
However, throughout the testing process we also talked to our customers a lot about their daily habits in terms of creating content. They each had different ways of collecting and constructing content ideas, but we were heartened to hear it invariably included mobile devices which act as ancillary tools.
This happens when quickly capturing sparks of ideas for content in a note-taking app, or sharing with themselves an article they thought was relevant to their subscribers. This mobile activity is what inspired the idea for Curate, our latest creation.
As we considered the universe in which our customers work, we recognized the convergence of several factors related to content marketing. All at once, the proliferation of content sharing due to social media, the legitimization of content curation, and the accessibility of “smart” mobile devices were at a place where all together they could really benefit marketers. Our team wanted to take advantage of this by creating an app that allows our customers to improve their marketing game while also saving them time.
Curate was born. Curate is a time-saving tool for AWeber customers. It will automatically generate a newsletter based on the content our customers are already consuming and sharing on their mobile devices.
The entire AWeber team is excited to see how our customers use Curate! During beta testing we’ve already seen our customers building curated newsletters with content that is sourced from across the web and other apps. But they’ve also shared their own blog articles into Curate, and their own online videos. All of this content automatically formats into consistently constructed previews, or rich snippets, with zero effort from the user, which ultimately constructs a ready-to-send newsletter. But there’s plenty of opportunity for personalization too.
AWeber has big plans for Curate. We are listening to our customers and adding features that are going to make Curate even better.
Visit aweber.com/curate.htm to sign up for more information.
Note: This is a post in the AWeber Engineering Blog series "Behind the App," which reveals important pieces of the behind-the-scenes story of our latest mobile app Curate. You can find the other posts in the series here.