What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?
I watch my analytics very carefully because we’re a growing company that has to adapt quickly to reader preferences. We’ve easily doubled our viewership in the past 5 years. A big part of that has been the changes we’ve made in collaboration with Dizzain, as well as their design work.
They bring their best resources to the table from a design standpoint. I’m competing against very large companies in this business, and a responsive site with a sophisticated aesthetic is a must. The appearance and functionality of our products have to rival major corporations, and they’ve delivered that for us.
As far as metrics, our centerpiece is a seasonal resort area. In the height of our season, we used to attract 1,000–2,000 individual viewers. Now that number is 11,000–12,000. Dizzain’s troubleshooting also increased our average views per visit from 1.2 to 3.65.
They did a fantastic job on our app.
How did Dizzain perform from a project management standpoint?
When I started this business, I knew nothing about technology. I’ve had a steep learning curve as a journalist who founded an online magazine. So when I first started interfacing with them, there were quite a few challenges because I didn’t understand tech language. That’s certainly changed over the last 5 years, and they’ve evolved with me. As my system and goals become more sophisticated and as technology changes, they’re responsive and adjusting our process.
We now have a system in place to do 2-week sprints. We set up a task list and a goal, and have all work done or in process in 2 weeks. If it’s not complete, I know what progress we’ve made. At any time, I’m able to assign new projects without overloading their system. Better planning enables me to get the developers that are the best fit for my projects.
They’re very transparent. When I was unhappy with the workflow, they set the system up my comments to be visible to the whole team. That gave me confidence that they were taking care of me and the necessary team members were seeing my input.
I prefer emails, but they use Asana. It’s an efficient system that allows me to see whether tasks I’ve scheduled are being translated correctly. In general, I interface with the project manager who dissembles the information from there.
What did you find most impressive about them?
Simply put, when they design our site, it doesn’t break. I have complete trust in their technical savvy. They’re in touch with trends and new options for improving the site. I don’t have to worry that they’re going to make changes that will impair the site’s functionality, and that’s huge.
Also, I appreciate their responsiveness. If I have a problem or a suggestion for how we work together, they make those changes to preserve our working relationship. That means a great deal to me.
Are there any areas they could improve?
While I wish everything could be done yesterday, they could improve their reaction times. I’ve had to prompt them to pay attention to my account when there appeared to be no activity for a month.
I’ve voiced issues with developers a few times, and they route new ones to my account so I’m happy. I understand that I’m a smaller client and they may not have the staff to please everyone at once, but I wish I didn’t need to speak up for myself.