Ship it or leave it: how to follow-up on feature requests?

  • 3 March 2020
  • 8 replies
  • 3386 views

Userlevel 3

Hey, fellow product managers!

How many feature requests do you have in your backlog? And how many of them will you actually implement? Does the user ever hear back again about their idea?

Oof, customer requests... Tricky they are!

Like you, we at Miro love our customers, and they love us back: we get lots of great feedback and tons of amazing, elaborate feature ideas. There are several channels that we are tracking: NPS survey feedback, support tickets, shoutouts on social networks, regular feedback review meetings with customer success and support agents.

But while we certainly want to deliver as much value as possible, it may be challenging to manage customers’ expectations when it comes to these requests.

So how do you go about it? Please share with us your tried and tested ways to track and follow-up on customer requests to guarantee the best user experience.


Or, take part in this short poll, and leave your own option in the comments!

 

In your opinion, what's the best way for communicating with customers about their feature requests?


8 replies

Userlevel 5
Badge +1

It’s crucial for me to make sure our users know that we are listening and care about their opinion.

 

Usually it is user feedback that makes the product better and not the input from my team. Currently I reply directly to reviews to let them know our plans. I think it’s the most trustworthy and un-biased method to let anyone who reads the reviews know where things stand.

 

However, I would love to have an official post to present goals for the product. But this isn’t always possible because I don’t want too many competitors getting ahead of our roadmap. So maybe we will only feature top 3 😉 and keep the rest a surprise.

Userlevel 3

Kyle,
Direct replies to reviews is an amazing effort! Do you keep these contacts for further hypotheses validation in interviews or usability testing?


But this isn’t always possible because I don’t want too many competitors getting ahead of our roadmap.


This makes sense. Sometimes you simply cannot afford this kind of transparency! :wink:  

 

 

Badge

its not a one way thing.
listen to the users and engage them, try to understand more about the reasoning 
and potential use case of the requested feature.
people like a feature to feature comparison, but a lot of the features details might be overkill..
e.g. the Mindmap in Miro, when first use it, i thought it less sophisicated compare to my dedicated Mindmap.  but when down to using it, some key elements stand out of the Miro version. e.g. Cloud, MultiUser Wiki (nicely shown thru a demo video), cross platform, keystroke shortcuts..
these are enough to make Miro standout.

obviously, its not designed to compete with full blown, multi hundred dollar Apps just on that one feature.

while that said, i’d still like to see the Miro app integrate well with other Apps in the mindmap world, e.g. like import/export of OPML, esp import, since Miro is a good presentation/action tool for a team.
pointers links to images from the Mindmap would also be welcome, since thats a basic feature among Miro anyway..
 

Userlevel 1

I think you're right to monitor all those areas for feedback, rarely does it come from one place.

 

I've got a BIG feature request (so I hope you're monitoring this!) - playing Google Drive videos in Miro. You can play YouTube videos (and enable logging in via Google) within Miro so I don't see this as too big a deal to implement. Plus Google Drive and Google Photos use the YouTube player interface to play videos within the browser.

 

Besides this (admittedly big deal to me), I think Miro is absolutely fantastic, it's the tool I can't go a day without since I found it 3 weeks ago and that's no exaggeration, I've used it daily for 3 solid weeks since signing up. It's intuitive, extremely powerful on the back end and handles everything very very well. The Android/iPad apps don't like editing text bigger than 288 but it gets there eventually.

 

Great job!

Hi @Xenia,

I know, your post is 2 years old but somehow I got onto it while I was searching for some updates on a feature request, which happens to be 2 years old too: Folders (directories) in projects | Miro.

In the linked thread, there is no communication with the customers besides a very old question about “what are your needs” and a “we are working on it” statement, which both feels like stalling tactics. 
 
If you are looking for a negative example for your question, you found it. 

Best
Benjamin

Userlevel 7
Badge +6

Hi @Benjamin Scholz, @Xenia and the rest of you! My opinion on this matter is that the whole community Wish List concept is quite counter-productive in a lot of aspects. Calling them “requests” and following up with “delivered” badges comes with a notion that they are orders, and that the submitting person is simply waiting for their “order” to be “delivered”. That’s not how proper product development works.

User needs should be researched and analyzed through proper continuous UX processes. Product teams shouldn’t just develop what users say they want — product teams should observe what users do, how they behave, and construct hypotheses based on those insights.

So the first thing I would do is stop calling them “feature requests” and start treating them simply as feedback, like any other type of feedback.

That’s my two cents anyway. 🙂

Hi @Henrik Ståhl

I completely agree with you. Yet, when you read through the thread of the mentioned post, you will find a very prominent user problem, which is in my biased opinion a problem worth solving 😀. And no matter whether you call it “feature requests” or “feedback”, if you offer such a channel, one needs to communicate with the community and show that it is used for something. 
 

Cheers

Userlevel 7
Badge +6

@Benjamin Scholz I agree on the parts about communication, that’s why I believe the way the community Wish List is set up is somewhat counter-productive. Words matter! 😀 And the wording in this case has, unfortunately, created a pretty toxic environment where angry users who think that a Wish List idea is just an order in a delivery queue are leaving aggressive comments. 

I’ve read through all of the most commented/most upvoted Wish List ideas and I totally understand if Mironeers are reluctant to communicate through those posts because they have become very toxic... 😞

So what I’m trying to say is that I think Miro should prioritize redoing the community Wish List concept altogether.

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