We're excited to announce we will be renaming our platform Confers in 2019. This post covers the background to this change.
For the majority of 2018, the product team has been extremely busy designing and engineering a brand new version of Stickyworld. Internally, we've been calling it Stickyworld 2.0 (our current version is v1.32) reflecting the step change in capabilities this new release will represent. We're pretty excited about this new release, but more on that to follow in subsequent posts.
What we didn't realise was that in progressing our next generation technology project, and closely examining the very core of its capabilities and applications, we would end up needing to develop a whole new identity for the product and business as we got ready to launch it in 2019.
Time for a new name
As we studied the existing platform and a wide range of customer projects, including public and private consultations and reviews, we began to realise that our name could hold us back as we started to approach customers in new industries, including those who need to do a lot of internal private project stakeholder engagement.
Talking to a range of professionals who engage stakeholders, from small consultants to big businesses, it was clear that not everyone 'got it'. After all "Stickyworld" as a name doesn't really explain what the product enables, nor does it convey the benefit or outcome that it delivers for customers. The name is arguably a bit too 'feature-centric'.
In fact 'Stickyworld' was basically the initial working name given to a tech project completed in 2010 as part of the initial exploratory R and D project funded by what was known as the Technology Strategy Board. It was a fun name and it stuck with some early beta customers. Some people really liked it, and often said so. But for the majority of people, the business and technology needed a greater explanation. This should have been an early warning sign for us. If you had to explain it a lot of times to people, referencing 'digital post it notes' and 'sticky note comments', you should know that it's not a good brand name for a software product. As Founder, I guess this was my bad.
Expert help to reposition and rebrand
So we decided to make a change. Back in September we sought help from a branding expert who works for SaaS companies like ours. Go Bhatia runs Reposition.io and we approached him. Early conversations with Go confirmed our suspicions about the name and he suggested we needed to change it to help us be taken more seriously in enterprise software. In the space of 4 weeks, Go and I worked together to explore and better understand the fundamental essence of what Stickyworld actually does for its customers, what the technology enables, our mission and our roadmap. I consulted my team and some external stakeholders, and we played with several root names and their derivatives - including the words like "suggestions" "ideas" "feedback" "consultation" and "conferring".
We set up online focus groups with the team and stakeholders, and captured everyone's feedback using Stickyworld's existing focus group and consultation capabilities, exploring new names and domain name availability, and then followed this up with a couple of online design reviews on the graphic design of the new logo. Following a multistage process we finally arrived at the new name - Confers, and our new logo below, which includes the 4 colour c mark that reflects our 4 stage process of conferring in the software.
It's pretty hard to get a good dot com url these days, but after intense negotiation, we secured the premium dot com domain name, www.confers.com - and we are now finalising to make the switch in early 2019. We've decided to make the move in stages to make it easier for customers, switching the brand and our marketing website before fully moving onto the new domain. But we anticipate all customers will be running off the new version by 01 April 2019. (For existing customers, we've put together a Q & A of how we will look after their data, migrate it to the new system, and create all the legacy web links, so if you are an existing customer, head on over to our help center here).
Benefits for customers of the confers brand name
The new software version will bring a large number of benefits to customers which we will explain and present in subsequent posts, and this new version will be hosted on www.confers.com. We think, however, the new brand and domain name itself also offers some benefits for customers worth mentioning, namely:
1) it's a short premium url, so easy for users to type, easy to remember.
2) confers better explains to everyone what the software enables for customers and stakeholders, so more serious, businesslike and trustworthy
3) the address of each customer portal will promote the positive conferring and consultative behaviour of our customer. For example:
Building upon customer success in 2019
So, we remain the same company, same core technology ideas, but we will have a brand new name and new technology to offer customers in 2019. We are pursuing the same mission to make it easy for professionals to harness the feedback and ideas from stakeholders when developing new products, services, buildings or places, and ensuring that this process is quick and easy for organisers, convenient for their stakeholders, and delivers results for organisers and stakeholders alike.
We look forward to working with you in 2019 and look forward to your feedback.