Archive for the Feedback Category

Good stuff all the way

Posted in Feedback, MadCap software, Tech Comm, technical writer, technical writing, webinars with tags , , , , , on February 4, 2009 by Mike

You probably heard that we released a new version of Feedback this week. Feedback is a product that I think every one should be using. You can stop guessing about what’s working and finally start to know.

Feedback

One of the toughest things in Tech Comm is knowing what information your users are using, how they’re finding it, and what they’re looking for. This really matters because if they want information you created but they aren’t finding it, then it doesn’t exist for them.

With schedules and budgets the way they are, you are also being pushed to the wall to deliver as much as possible in shorter time frames. So, if you’re like me, you make decisions about what you think the users need and what they don’t need. And you may guess wrong.

But what if you could look over your users shoulders? What if you could see what information they are using? How are they finding it? What are they looking for that they aren’t finding? That would make your efforts more focused and would better meet your users needs.

That’s what Feedback does.

What the heck are these people doing?

You can run reports about where the users are spending time in the online docs, how they got there and what they are searching for. That lets you:

  • Add the information that they’re looking for that isn’t there
  • Add the keywords they’re using to the synonym list to help them find existing information
  • Decide not to update existing information because no one ever looks for it nor reads it

Feedback lets you see what your users are doing and help them better. Ultimately, that’s what Tech Comm professionals do – we’re a helpful people.

Feedback also lets your users rank topics with a 5 star system and you get the information as well, so you can know which topic are really helping and which aren’t.

But you can also get comments back, directly from the topic. These comments can be posted for everyone, moderated by your team before they become visible, or just sent to your team for review.

“No one reads the docs” is just wrong

And, if you’re like me and you spent your career listening to “No one reads the documentation”, wouldn’t it be nice to point to the data from the reports, showing that in fact, people are reading the docs? That would be cool!

We’re running a great deal on Feedback this month. If you want to just try it out to see what you can learn about your docs, we also do a 3 month thing that we host for your docs. No long term obligation, secure environment, all that.

Contact our sales team and ask about the special and the 3-month deal. In 3 months, you can discover a lot about your docs – enough to repay the cost of Feedback, I think.

New webinars

The webinars (my favorite topic lately!) are going very well. We’re getting 200/250 people signed up for each one. We’ve added 2 more topics. They are:

Controlling costs by controlling language

This tool-independent webinar shows how simplified language options can reduce page count, decrease translation expense, and improve comprehension among non-English audiences. But is it appropriate for you? Find out.

Presenter: Brenda Huettner, P-N Designs, Inc

Apr 23, 2009 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM (Pacific Time)

https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/877644241

Users: Who are these people and what do they want?

This tool-independent webinar discusses creating the wrong content for the wrong user is as bad as creating nothing at all. Learn to identify your users and decide how to support them. Reduce costs and schedules by providing the right information.

Presenter: Sharon Burton, MadCap Software

May 14, 2009 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM (Pacific Time)

https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/674715509

We’ve not added them to the MadCap website yet but they should appear in the next few days. If you’re interested, sign up.

We’re also recording the webinars so they are available afterwards if the time and date don’t work for you.

OK – I need to get back to work!

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