As an early designer at Recommended, a company powered by the talented team at Smith.ai, I was involved with designing social, consumer-oriented product features to promote engagement, business tools for seamlessly creating profiles and offer services, and marketing & communications materials to generate growth.
Designing for a two-sided market of businesses and consumers has its own share of challenges. Over the course of a few months, and many long nights, our user base grew by 20x to over 20,000 users recommending businesses all over the world.
Unlike other review websites, Recommended is built on trust through social reputation. Great businesses deserve more than just a collection of reviews, so we built Recommended to help business grow online by showcasing their customers’ praise, discovering new ones, and offering their services online.
Once businesses expand their audience of potential customers through recommendations, the key to powering your business online through Recommended is a complete profile.
For high quality businesses to showcase their work, offer their services, and continue growing their network of credible recommendations, I designed a series of onboarding modules to promote the most important actions for businesses to take.
To support the nature of working closely with clients and the positive impact a personal recommendation can have, the custom illustrations emphasized the importance of word of mouth for small businesses and professionals.
To promote growth, we partnered with great businesses to create sweepstakes based on recommendations and shared them with niche, enthusiastic communities. Strategic marketing and enticing advertising made these campaigns a success by almost doubling our engagement and user base.
Rewarding top contributors is important because they help communities with specialized knowledge, diverse interests, or just plenty of experiences they are willing to share with others.
In just a few weeks, the campaigns reached across the globe and generated thousands of recommendations. For the first time, many businesses were able to establish their online presence through recommendations instead of seeking out reviews.
Working closely with the marketing team, we targeted specific audiences through print ads, email newsletters, and social media to deliver impactful visuals showcasing the prizes.
Aaron Lee, Co-founder
Justin Maxwell, Co-founder
Maddy Martin, Head of Marketing
Sean Martin, Lead Developer
Lorenzo Gil Sanchez, Lead Engineer