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2016 Year-End Product Update Recap

Written by Chris Wiggins

It’s that time of year again — and hard to believe that 2016 is already in the books. In the spirit of reflection, we thought it’d be nice to take a look back at just how much progress we’ve made this year both as a company and as a product.

The Company: Then vs. Now

We began this year with just around 20 employees in a small office in West Midtown Atlanta. There were more than 1,000 locations using Gather to manage private events which,was a huge milestone for the company. Our Marketing department had just launched less than two months prior to the start of the year, and our team was excited to see the growth that was ahead.

Now, our team has nearly tripled as we approach 60 employees, with more room to accommodate the growing team thanks to a shiny new space that’s all ours in Atlanta’s Inman Park neighborhood. We have more than 3,000 locations across the U.S.  using our software and we’re more excited than ever to find out what’s in store for the next year. But first, let’s recap how the Gather software has evolved over the past 12 months.

 

Product Evolution

When it comes to the Gather web application, a lot has changed this year, but our focus has remained the same: to streamline the event-planning process as much as possible. All of our updates and changes have been made with this goal in mind and we’re all very proud of where the product is at this moment. Here are a few of the key updates we’ve made over the course of this year:

The Gather Mobile App

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In June, we officially launched the Gather mobile app allowing you to manage all of your event details on the go right from your phone. This was far more than just a feature upgrade. To make Gather mobile, we were tasked with the challenge of consolidating the information you need to run your events business, and adapting it to work on a completely different interface.

The launch was met with much anticipation from our product & development team as we awaited feedback from our customers. Thankfully, the response was overwhelmingly positive and the mobile app has since become a huge part of the lives of our clients.

 

 Guest Feedback

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In the same way that our team anxiously awaits client feedback whenever we launch product updates, we figured it’d be a good idea to create a way for our clients to receive updates themselves. With this idea came the launch of guest feedback: a feature that automatically emails your guests the day after the event and prompts them to talk about their experience at your venue.

This is not only a great way to quickly improve your events, but also it’s a good way to learn more about the people coming through your establishment to understand what they care about most.

Saved Filters

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With so many people using Gather on a daily basis, we noticed a lot of people creating the same filters over and over to view their bookings in a way that’s relevant to their specific business. In an effort to avoid redundancy and reduce the amount of time you spend organizing your data, we thought it’d be a good idea to allow you to save your most popular filters to be used whenever you like.

Bookings Performance Report

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There are many different factors that contribute to the success of your private events business, and for those in charge of securing new bookings, keeping up with all of those data points can be time consuming. That’s why this year we launched the Bookings Performance Report to make it easier for you to see which factors are responsible for the success of your private event sales. This is only the beginning of our efforts to improve reporting capabilities within Gather.

 

What’s next in 2017?

In the coming year, we’re looking to push the product even further. First off, we’re constantly exploring new ways to improve your workflow within Gather. Among other things, this could mean new ways to keep track of next steps after you’ve booked a new client. In addition to workflow improvements, we’re working to provide you with better ways to track the source of your leads from within the platform as well as where they end up (i.e. new booking, close lost, etc). And lastly, be on the lookout for more robust reporting features and financials as we continue to build out Gather’s ability to show you how your business is growing.

As we wrap things up, it’s been a great year for all of us here at Gather, but none of it would be possible without all of our clients and their feedback. To those of you who use Gather regularly, it’s our honor to be able to partner with you on this journey.

Chris Wiggins is a Product Manager at Gather. His most recent article was Announcing Gather Tracking: Sourcing and Segments.