This is a quick note. We are looking for beta testers for Wribly!
Our goal is to recruit ~50 volunteers to test the system. If you are interested:
Please sign up at http://www.wribly.com
What would your participation entail?
1) Participate in the creation of a short story using the methods of our application. The story will be 10 pages long, and would take around 3-4 months to complete. The approximate time required to participate will be around 1/2 to 1 hour per week. If at any point you decide that this is not your cup of tea, you are always free to quit.
2) Give us your feedback on whatever comes to your mind: from advice on the creation process, to the specifics of the implementation. In other words, any opinion you have to make this a better product would be very welcome.
I will also use this opportunity to let you know about this awesome website I heard about in the startup success podcast called betali.st. This is a list or repository of pre-launch startups. I just submitted Wribly, and hope they take it!
For a while now I have been meaning to write about a few other websites out there that also provide platforms to engage users in collaborative writing. I have been a user in many of them, and they all have good things and bad things (in my personal opinion of course). I will leave that for a future post, but for now I wanted to say something about one of these sites: Fabulate
This week, I was sad to hear that Fabulate is closing its doors. In Fabulate, users would submit an idea, then vote for their favorite, and finally the winning idea would move on to the next chapter, when the process is repeated. Sounds familiar? When I first heard about Fabulate, I was excited to see that my vision for Wribly was shared by other people. However, under the similarities in the surface, I realized that the implementation was very different. Let me highlight what I believe are the 3 key differences between Wribly and Fabulate:
1) Wribly imposes a structure for the creation process, i.e. each stage has rules for content and organization. This process is an adaptation of the snowflake method mentioned in a previous post. In Fabulate, users are free to write whatever comes to their mind as long as it is a continuation of the previous chapter and within the word limits.
2) The voting in Wribly uses a new method we are developing to allow a fair assessment of the quality of the work without the need of keeping in mind all the other submissions I have read. In Fabulate, as in many other websites, users would vote by assigning a number of stars, from 1 to 10, to each submission
3) Wribly is targeted for use by high school students. Fabulate is targeted to the whole web.
Fabulate’s creator and administrator, Ryan, has been nice enough to give me very good advice on how to improve Wribly as well as let me know some of the things he would have done differently on Fabulate. I am very thankful for his help, and I can’t wait to hear about his future projects!
One thing I learned from this lecture from Founder Institute’s Adeo Ressi is that there are such things as landing pages and a/b testing. If you have no idea of what I’m talking about (that was me before watching the video) worry not my dear friend, as I shall explain briefly.
Landing page: Is the page you are directed to after you click on an advertising.
a/b testing: Is a marketing strategy where you try different landing pages (thus the a and b… however you can test as many as you like) to see which one resonates better with your target audience (as indicated, for example, by the number of people that add their email to the list).
This sounds complicated, but this is why Unbounce is so genious. They make this process incredibly simple to implement. So if you decide to visit www.wribly.com you will be directed to either of 2 landing pages. Unless you change to a different IP address you won’t be able to see the other one. One is more informative and descriptive, the other one is more provocative.
I haven’t used ads yet (it is a bit scary to spend money in ads… but I will do it eventually), so I can’t tell which page has a higher conversion rate (rate at which users will provide their emails, which is my objective at this point in time).