If you read my manifesto piece for OhBoard, you will notice something different than what you’ve seen before. I listed the benefits, but not the cool features. I showed the screenshot, but not the fancy technology. I pitched in 1 short sentence, not a long paragraph.
Most of the time, when you are seeing a new startup launch, or a new app announcement, you’ll mainly hear something like this:
We use some of the latest technology such as HTML5/CSS3/jQuery/Node.js/RoR/Django/MongoDB/[an open source framework] and build this very cool app called xyz in 10 months that allows you to share random pictures/upload funny videos/shorten long URLs/tell your current location/any combinations of each. You will be able to login from your computer or your mobile smartphone, and you can see in real-time what your friends are doing. We’ve integrated our app to different social networks like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Foursquare, Gowalla, Flickr, Tumblr, Posterous, and 25 more. The app is free and you can try it here. If you love our app, feel free to tell your friends and tweet about it! We need some serious tractions. :)
That was what I did with OneExtraLap (my strategically-failed social quizzing app). And it was proven that it should not be the way to go. Most of the time, because you are so much into what you are building yourself, you are over-familiarizing with it. You know everything about it, and you naturally tend to think other people do as well. But they actually don’t. When they see a giant piece of text of what features you have, they will be lost immediately because they don’t even know what your app is fundamentally. Right now, I feel like my points of view on things I built are still different than others (which I hope I can improve over time), so I decided to take a different approach: show visitors screenshots. I love screenshots. It is so direct that it won’t change if you build the app or if you are still not sure what it is. I think that is the best way to demonstrate your products.
To conclude that off, I personally think simplicity when explaining things is very important. Just tell them the information they needed to take your designated action. When you buy a physical whiteboard, you want to know what does it look/feel like and how much is it. You certainly don’t want to know what the raw materials are, since you either don’t care or you don’t even know what they are after you hear them. And that’s what I do with OhBoard, hopefully it will be successful, and I’ll share with you guys soon on how the results turn out.