If I could do it all over again, what would I change? Can I make it better for my members, and for me?
Noteboom Tutorials got a reboot. What’s changed and why? I’ll start at the beginning. The tools I used for helping manage my Noteboom Tutorials site were good for the time when I first built the site years ago… and they are still good to this day. But there are better tools that are available. Faster. Easier to manage. More features. More flexibility.
So I decided to research some of these tools by rebuilding my site just for fun. The initial results were impressive. I liked what I saw. This lead me to thinking if I could do it all over again, what would I change? Can I make it better for my members and for me?
As I was building the new site, I had the intent of keeping it under the old name – Noteboom Tutorials. New package with the same name. A little more on how I came upon the name of Noteboom. When I started my company, I named it Noteboom Productions, not knowing which direction I was going. Why Noteboom? It’s my wife’s maiden name. Why Productions? Noteboom Productions gave the presence of a larger company, which was the thinking of the day back when I first formed it. And it worked, a lot of people think my company is bigger than it is. Hint… it’s only me, Dan Wassink. Something else you may not know… my tutorials in the App Stores are still under the name Noteboom Productions.
Once the tutorials became a hit, I then changed the site name to Noteboom Tutorials from Noteboom Productions. It reflected more on what I was doing – creating tutorials. It worked well, but I still got on a regular basis the mixup between Noteboom and notebook. The name wasn’t memorable. People don’t know me as Noteboom, they know me as Dan.
All this lead to changing the name to Dan’s Tutorials. It’s how people know me. It’s how people remember me.
With all the changes I am making, how could I also make the site name more memorable? My members know me as Dan, not Noteboom. That got me thinking and naturally Dan’s Tutorials came to mind. It’s how people know me. It’s memorable. It also fits in with today’s thinking of building a personal relationship with your customers or members. You may or may not know this, but I’ve been building a personal relationship with my members since the beginning. When you chat with me, you are literally chatting with me – Dan. I may be on my Mac, iPad, or iPhone, but it is me. Email? Same, you are literally emailing me – Dan. When you get a receipt for payment, my phone number is on the receipt. This phone number is my personal cell phone and it’s the same number my family and friends use to call me. I am not a big company or even a medium size company. It is me, Dan. So I thought maybe my site name should reflect this and incorporate who I am as well as who is helping you. All this lead to changing the site name to Dan’s Tutorials. It’s how people know me. It’s how people remember me. Also, everyone remembers who their favorite teachers were. Hopefully I can be on that list too with my tutorials.
So what are some of the changes to the new site?
- Tutorials are easier to find as I rearranged how they they are structured. My old site had three tutorials for an app, one for each device. They were also organized by device, so you had to go to the device first, then find the tutorial. Now you just go to the tutorial, and then you’ll find all the lessons categorized by device. It’s much easier to find what you are looking for!
- The site is cleaner. The new site gave me an opportunity to go with a different theme that is minimal. I think it’s actually easier to navigate for everyone. It’s clean and simple.
- Distraction free training. When you are viewing a lesson, the site changes and minimizes some of the website options to make viewing the lesson distraction free.
- You can take notes for each lesson! This is something I’ve wanted for a while, but it wasn’t easily possible with the old site. Well, now with my new site, with each lesson, you can take notes! This feature also works well with the iPad and the iPhone.
- New plans. I experimented with offering memberships that expire after a year in the past for people who do not want a subscription. It didn’t work as well as I wanted. With my new site, I am happy to say, I have more flexibility in my plans. This means I can once again can offer membership for a year. Once that year is up, your membership will not renew. You’ll also get an email before it expires letting you know you can renew if you’d like. This is great for people who do not want a subscription!
- Subscriptions can be paused. In addition to my no-hassle cancellation policy, you can also pause your subscriptions. When a subscription is paused, any renewals will be paused until you resume your subscription.
- Reminders. This is something that has been requested for a while now and I am happy to let you know that you will now get a friendly reminder about 2 weeks before your subscription renews. This will give you about 2 weeks to evaluate if you want to keep your membership. No more surprise renewals… at least not from me.
- A much faster site. In addition to being a new theme, it is also faster.
- The site is better designed for iPads and iPhones. My old site was not bad, but this is even better.
- Discounts for user groups, educators and students, and the military. The old site didn’t handle coupon codes as well as I wanted, so I wasn’t able to easily offer discounts for people in user groups, education, or the military. The new site allows me to easily add these.
I personally am excited about the changes. It’s been in the back of my mind for some time now and I finally decided to do it. It is still all me, nothing has changed behind the scenes. I’ll still be guiding you in my tutorials, but now it’s under Dan’s Tutorials as opposed to Noteboom Tutorials (and I got the OK from my wife to make the change). I hope you like it!
As always, thanks for your interest!