How An A-Ha Software Moment Led This Startup To A 91 NPS


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Written by Susannah Bailin, Cofounder and CEO of AdviceCoach

Hi HypeNation,

My name is Susannah Bailin, the founder and CEO of AdviceCoach.

For medical providers and rehab therapists, our mobile/SaaS platform increases patient compliance and decreases patient churn by replacing paper handouts for post-appointment instructions– that get lost, are difficult to understand and don’t convey what the provider said in the appointment –with a simple mobile app that records content, sets reminders, lets the provider & patient communicate easily and improves recovery outcomes.

Why “Don’t Make Me Think” should be your mantra for Designing Software for the Non-Technical User

Our company journey began when I saw an opportunity to use mobile phones and tablets to record medical instructions during a three-year bout I had with 2 frozen shoulders. I was more compliant and recovered more quickly because I had an easy way to listen to my provider when I was home and alone. Would the patients use the app instead of paper diagrams? Would physical therapists record home exercise programs? Those were the overarching questions for AdviceCoach when we launched our first MVP in the summer of 2017.

Fast forward 2 years, we have now over 1100 patients and their providers on our platform and discovered the key UX workflows to make our app super simple to use:

  1. Log In vs. Register  Use whatever you can – pop-ups, color, copy, positioning – to make this fail-proof. As the first connection your users have with your product, what should be a no-brainer can become a huge headache if you don’t focus on points of potential friction.

  2. SaaS Instructions We made the big mistake of assuming that a single page of inputs would decrease the cognitive dissonance around setting up our Playbooks. Wrong! After many, many attempts to simplify, we finally did our homework with other successful platforms and stole their workflow – one question per page and no more than 4 questions.

  3. Features  If you want non-technical people to use your software, then remove every  non-essential feature. Do one thing well and you will see a huge uptick in usage. Our NPS rose to a 91 after we brought the entire process down to two clicks.

When you are a young, small, unproven company, you have one chance to keep a user. If the experience with your software is confusing, they will come up with excuses not to use it because they don’t want to admit that it’s too hard. But don’t give up!

The One Choice We Made that Changed Everything

After spending months demonstrating our product to anyone who would take a meeting on-line, in a coffee shop, in an office or on a phone call, we realized that the positive feedback we were getting in those meetings had nothing to do with the feedback we were getting from the clinics themselves.

That AH HA Moment changed the way we collected user data. From that day on we vowed to follow one simple rule:

Only test the software in the context where it will be used.

That meant that we needed to go to the providers’ own clinics after hours to see how they used the SaaS platform to create a Playbook when they were tired and cranky and wanted to get home as soon as possible.

That meant that we needed to sit at the clinic and watch the appointment to see how patients and providers recorded the instructions when the next patient had already arrived for the next appointment.

Once you identify the actual physical and emotional context the product will be used in, you will collect data that accurately informs your development roadmap.

I dive deeper into AdviceCoach’s strategy and other lessons learned in my conversation with RajNATION on Startup Hypeman: The Podcast.

I appreciate you listening to our story.

-Susannah