By Jarrett Knyal
Recently I received an unexpected “thank you” package from a company called TechSmith. In the package was:
- A nice insulated bag that you can put hot or cold stuff in.
- A cool “sound vase” USB-powered external speaker that lights up.
- A rubbery pad I can put on my dash so my iPod won’t fly out the window during high-speed car chases.
- A nice pen.
- A $50 Amazon gift certificate.
As part of my role at Quicken Loans, I conduct usability studies where I observe people using our Web site. I’ve recently been involved beta testing an application that allows me to do this remotely. The software is created by TechSmith and is called UserVue.
Luckily, the beta test coincided with a recent study so I was able to run quite a few people through it. There were some glitches and I let the UserVue team know about them right away. Since I usually had another test queued up the next day, I was always trying to get them to hurry up and make changes. The people I spoke with were extremely professional and responsive, even though they really didn’t need to be. As a beta tester, it’s understood that what’s being tested will have some wrinkles, and some of these will take awhile to figure out. During the beta test, I found the UserVue team to be more responsive than many support people I’ve called for problems with released software.
I was glad to participate in the beta and that I could help TechSmith make a better product. They were always thankful for the feedback I gave them and I never expected anything else.
However, what blew me away more than anything was a card that was signed by everyone on the UserVue development team, with a nice personalized message. I’ve gotten plenty of swag from companies before, but nothing this thoughtful.
Here’s a close-up of the card:
In the everyday rush of our lives it’s easy to forget that the things and services we use had to be dreamed up, planned out, and created by other people. When the people who are doing the dreaming, planning and creating care about what they’re doing, it makes a difference. As a consumer, it’s nice to know that they do care.