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July 2023 Update

August 1, 2023 by Brad Simantel

This is a monthly update where I share what I’ve been working on recently. For the previous installment, check out my June 2023 Update.

This month I’m feeling like a failure since I apparently can’t force myself to do things I don’t want to do. I keep putting off Google Ads after wading in and getting overwhelmed with the interface and keyword research and having to write ad copy, but I know that’s what I should be doing. Or if not Google Ads, I should be working to get into the various app stores (Slack, GitHub, Atlassian) or writing SEO content.

It’s just hard to do the hard things. When I slide into doing dev work even though I know it’s not the most important thing, I feel like I’m getting something done, and isn’t it better to do something than to get stuck and do nothing?

Emoji Reactions

The big feature I shipped this month is the ability to add emoji reactions, or “reacji”, to posts and comments. It’s a small thing, but I feel like it does a lot to add the to the vibe of the app. It was also a surprisingly complex feature to build - the change touched 60 files and 1000+ lines of code.

Onboarding Feedback

I got some really great feedback on my onboarding flow from Phil Freo, VP of Product/Engineering at Close. He made the video private, but the password is “teaminal” if you want to take a look:

I feel like I’ve been working on onboarding for the last six months, but clearly there’s still more to do. I’m planning to make some changes based on Phil’s feedback next month.

Fixes & Improvements

I also shipped several small fixes and improvements:

  • Removed Gravatar avatars since I was seeing some broken images related to how Gravatar handled my fallback URLs
  • On the marketing site, I replaced the calendar graphic with a map, making it less about saving time and more about collaborating across timezones
  • Added the ability to disable or rotate the link that lets anyone join your team

Next month

I’m not planning any feature work for August beyond the onboarding improvements. I’m just going to work on the marketing site, write docs, run my first Google Ads campaign, and try to get into the Slack App Directory.

Update: The September 2023 Update is the next post in this series.

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