Co-Founder, Product Designer & Developer | 2011 - 2012

For a while Puppystream was the #1 photo-sharing community for dog lovers. Visit site.

I thought working with photos of cute pups every day would be a smart life-move. I also knew that the pet supply and services industry was massive and that if the right community formed, there was a chance to have a nice business.

To that end, I designed and built the web app then raised money from several NY angels to focus on growth. Based on this goal, two of our KPIs became “new users” and “follower count”. I knew that nailing onboarding and follow-recommendations would affect these. So, I designed a simple flow that prompted users to follow certain breeds or Facebook friend’s dogs after they created their account. This helped move the needle and the “recommended pups” screen was later linked from other parts of the site to further encourage following. Subsequent user testing and feedback surveys helped us alter these flows even more. Not always for the best, but since we were watching the numbers we had a compass.

Our third KPI was “photos per user”. To address this I designed and implemented a system that enabled users to post from Instagram with a certain hashtag. A similar batch-import workflow was also rolled out for Facebook. Both of these worked like a charm and almost doubled the amount of content that was going up per week.

Our modest team had a pretty good thing going. But by mid 2012 the only photo-sharing game in town was clearly Instagram. That fact made raising another round implausible so we stopped working on the product.

Near the end in an effort to reach our growth goals we thought a different format and experience would up engagement and provide Puppystream with a unique voice. The assumption was that a more playful approach could get us to the next milestone. To validate this assumption I developed the playfull corkboard, sticker-laden version you see below. I created a landing page with this design and prompted people to add their email to be notified upon launch. We drove traffic from a couple tech articles and paid search. The conversion ratio did not meet our goals so we didn’t build this in the end.