Last time we met, I shared with you guys my realization about being kinder to myself when it comes to the self-imposed pressure to perform professionally at unrealistic levels. After re-reading it, I realized that I just lightly brushed over a few enhancementsto the site that I’d like to take a moment to acknowledge since I near drove myself crazy trying to make it happen.
As I mentioned last post, I got tons of great feedback from friends and family and I really appreciated how seriously they took it. During beta, I asked them to please take care to pay special attention to every element of the process from start to finish. I had several long conversations with many of them about their experience with the website, the delivery process and of course the flowers themselves. My favorites were those who took notes at each step just to make sure they didn’t miss anything, and the feedback was very helpful. In addition to pointing out little glitches here and there that we were able to fix right away, there were a few other suggestions that fundamentally changed the way clients experience our site and, as a result, our flowers.
“This was a game changer because not only did it empower our clients with some control over the flowers they received, it freed us from the impossible responsibility of accurately guessing which flowers people we don’t even know might like.”
PICK YOUR OWN DAMN FLOWERS!
Initially, we did not allow clients to select the flowers or box variety they received. The thinking was that offering that choice would complicate the process. We instead decided that it would be better to send people the best available options at random, making whatever clients get that week a surprise. Within a week or so of beta, we realized that taste in flowers is like art or fashion and that what one person loves, another may loathe. While that worked fine during beta when I knew everyone placing an order and could handpick boxes based on their known preferences, once the company opened to clients in the wild, that would be impossible to assess. With that realization, I decided to add flower recipe options to the What’s Blooming page so that people could see the blooms in season and the featured pairings. We then added an option for clients to select their preferred flower mix from the product page. We also put together brief fun facts about each flower in case people want to know a little about the flowers before making a selection. That info can be found on each flower’s image on the What’s Blooming page. The box selections will rotate regularly as each farm’s flower offering changes with the season. This was a game changer because not only did it empower our clients with some control over the flowers they received, it freed us from the impossible responsibility of accurately guessing which flowers people we don’t even know might like. Developing this option also presented an opportunity to do some cool things that we’ll be rolling out in the near future. We’re still working out the logics but I’ll tell you more about that soon.
“When clients are ready to post their floral creations on social media, they can visit our site, drop their photo into the frame, download it and post the frame photo on IG, Facebook, etc.”
Another addition that we made to the site was the social media toolkit. Now, I brought this up in the last post, but am happy to go into more detail here because I’m still super excited that I was able to make it happen at all. So, as I shared previously, I was adamant about having a social media toolkit and was fully obsessed with having these virtual photo frames for people to post on social media. The way virtual photo frames work is that we create a custom Postal Petals branded frame that lives on our site. When clients are ready to post their floral creations on social media, they can visit our site, drop their photo into the frame, download it and post the frame photo on IG, Facebook, etc. That may not seem like a big deal to you, but I’m a branding nerd and that concept, to me, is brilliant branding driven by user-generated content. I’d seen it used sparingly on social media and searched high and low to figure out how to get that technology on my site. After almost two months of looking and finding and losing, I was thrilled when my developer was able to replicate the exact technology and functionality that I needed. Saving me a nice chunk of change in the process. I’m happy to say that you can now find the social media toolkit complete with the frames, graphics, hashtags and sample messaging by following the #PostalPetalslink on the site.
“It’s such a thoughtful way to spread beauty and positive vibes…”
One of my favorite calls was with my friend and her wife. These two came with all the ideas and we’ll be integrating many of them into future brand offerings. The one idea that they suggested and we’re implementing right away is the Petal Forward challenge where we invite people to participate in a flower giving chain by sending a box of flowers to someone who could use a reason to smile, then encouraging them to do the same for someone else who would appreciate the gesture and so on. It’s such a thoughtful way to spread beauty and positive vibes and I loved the idea the moment she suggested it and am excited to see how many people it reaches.
“With that realization, I knew what I had to do.”
FLORISTS, GIFTED & BLACK
The site addition that I’m most proud didn’t come from beta feedback at all. While working to build a database of florists that we could work with the lead the floral design portion of our workshop experiences, I noticed that there weren’t a lot of Black florists on the list. When I asked my team to please pull together a list of Black florists to integrate into the overall list, I realized that they were rare and hard to find. With that realization, I knew what I had to do. We went to work compiling the names of Black florists that we’d identified from our own research and other lists we’d found online and created a page on our website for people to find Black florists. The thought here was that there may be people who come to our website thinking that we’re a traditional florist, which we are not. Rather then send them away empty-handed, I figured while they’re on the site, we might as well provide them with a resource to find a florist (a Black florist to be exact) to deliver professionally designed floral arrangements in their area when the occasion calls for something a bit less interactive. To help amplify their work, we launched #BlackFloristFridays on our social media accounts and invite people to tag a Black florist that we should add to our master list and weekly highlight. The result has been people tagging and DMing us names of Black florists that we likely never would have known about otherwise. The hope is that the list will become a living resource for people who are looking for Black florists across the country…whether or not they ever buy a box of flowers from Postal Petals.
We’ve got a ton of exciting things in the works with the company and the website right now and I’m making sure to slow myself down to a speed that allows me to enjoy and appreciate the process of building vs. rushing myself for the gratification of completion.