Just like you, we’ve been stuck inside the past few weeks. And like you, we’ve done our best to be productive during this time.
Though we did our fair share of binge-watching, we also took this time to launch one of the more substantial updates in nDash’s brief history. This includes a mini re-brand, new models for pricing and support, and a whole lot more.
Here’s a quick look at what’s new.
.co to .com
On the brand front, you might notice that our public-facing site has changed from .co to .com. We believe this could be the most subtle re-brand in the history of commerce 🙂
Moving to a dot com domain — without changing our name from nDash — was something we’d always wanted. It’s a bit more credible, more familiar, and less likely to screw up email deliverability and website bounces. Kudos to Matt Solar on procuring that elusive M.
New Knowledge Base
As our user base grew (exponentially) this past year, the need for a more organized, robust knowledge base became strikingly clear. On that note, we’re excited to announce that we’ve moved all of our Help Topics out of WordPress and into HelpScout. You can check them out here at help.ndash.com.
Along with the new knowledge base, HelpScout will also be replacing Drift (for customer chats within the platform) and Feedbackify (for writer issues and feedback). Instead of navigating away from the platform, users can now ask their questions within the app, saving lots of time.
The New Basic Plan
nDash remains to committed to maintaining a free version of the platform. The question we asked ourselves recently, however, was what type of experience should that free version offer?
Over the last several years, we’ve calculated that roughly 95% of all content spend came from brands on one of our paid plans. That’s a pretty high number. Companies that have remained on the free version tended to not have much (if any) budget to pay freelancers — and that’s perfectly okay. We still want to provide them with value.
So with that in mind, we decided to move a key feature over to the Basic plan; the ability to use nDash as an internal content management tool.
Instead of using email and spreadsheets to manage content creation, companies can now use nDash to manage the process via features like calendars, Kanban boards, source feeds and more. When the time comes to scale with our community of freelance writers, that’s when they’ll hop on one of our paid plans.
To recap the new model:
- The Basic plan gives you all the tools you need to manage content creation. You can still purchase content ideas from freelancers, but the ability to search the community and initiate assignments is now restricted.
- The Pro plan basically remains the same; you get all the features of the free version, along with access to our community and support for building a team of elite freelance writers.
- The Managed plan also stays the same; we take on all the heavy lifting that comes with managing content creation and freelance writers.
To learn more, check out our new pricing page.
Replacing Open Assignments with Staff Picks
Another thing we noticed was that the vast majority of successful brands on nDash send assignments to a small, core team of writers they trust (which we helped them find). This is the experience we’ve been shooting for from the start.
The open assignment feature — where companies post their assignments and must choose a writer from a sea of applicants — was less than ideal for several reasons. In our view, the quicker we can build you an elite team of writers, the more successful you’ll be.
In other words, we want to take burden of building a writing team off your plate. That’s why we scrapped the open assignment feature and replaced with with staff picks.
Here’s how it works:
- Create a Staff Pick assignment and add as much details as you can
- This triggers a notification to our customer success team
- We’ll review the scope, post it ourselves, and get it in-progress with the best writer available
The idea behind this feature is that it’s a means to an end. We’d much prefer to suggest a small team of writers upfront (if you want us to help with this, message us through the platform) but in the meantime, the Staff Pick option can be used to slowly build that core team, one assignment at a time.
A few more notable items:
- Removing LinkedIn sign up-and sign-in. Users can only create and log into accounts via email and password. If you need help signing in without LinkedIn, check out this Help Topic.
- New community standards. You’ll notice that the total pool of available writers has decreased slightly, yet the quality of these writers has increased substantially. Much more to come on this in the very near future.
- Bug fixes. We’re constantly refining the platform experience, and this launch was no exception, as we fixed a number of bugs relating to assignment creation, data syncing and other areas.
Have suggestions on what features or enhancement we should work on next? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.