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We've got some exciting plans in the works for the future of ThruTalk and ThruText - read more to find out what we're up to!
Head of Product
Hi everyone, my name is Josh Frank, GetThru’s new Head of Product. I have the exciting job of updating you on our product plans for the 2021-2022 election cycle!
I’ll start with the biggest news: we’re rebuilding ThruTalk from the ground up! We hope to have a “NewTalk” beta available for testing in the first half of 2022. As such, we will be making only minimal fixes on our legacy ThruTalk product.
We’re also in the process of integrating ThruText and ThruTalk, creating additional value for clients that use both tools. In the meantime, we’ll continue to improve ThruText with a focus on increased flexibility and ease of use.
If you want to know more detail about our plans, please read on.
We acquired ThruTalk in 2018 from Justice Democrats, where it was built to serve a small number of campaigns. Since then, we’ve made massive investments to turn it into an enterprise-level system that supported more than 750 million phone calls in 2020.
To date, our approach to improving ThruTalk has been to “rebuild-in-place” -- steadily improving components while continuing to run the software -- and we’re proud of what we accomplished. ThruTalk played a crucial role in the 2020 elections, especially as so much on-the-ground organizing shifted to the phones because of COVID. We supported the Biden-Harris campaign, the Georgia runoffs, and hundreds of other important campaigns and initiatives.
But 2020 was not without its challenges. ThruTalk is built on top of a 3rd party platform, LiveVox, that was not built for large, remote, volunteer-based calling programs. Despite numerous technical investments from both our team and theirs, we could not achieve the scale or stability that we expect and that our clients deserve. That’s why in 2021-2022 we will stop “rebuilding-in-place” and instead build an entirely new ThruTalk from the ground up. The work has already begun, and we anticipate having a beta available for testing in the first half of 2022. This new strategy means limiting work on “Legacy ThruTalk” to crucial bug fixes so that we can devote our efforts to building a new and improved version as quickly as possible.
In the course of building the new ThruTalk, we’ll be making improvements across the system. Here are some of the areas we are prioritizing for upgrades:
If you have ideas for our rebuild and/or would be willing to participate in user interviews or test out new designs, please let us know here:
ThruTalk Feedback & User Research Sign Up
In addition to rebuilding ThruTalk, we’re also planning to more closely integrate our products. Many of our clients use both tools. We believe their experience will be significantly enhanced by merging ThruTalk and ThruText into a unified platform.
At some point in 2022, we expect clients to go from logging into ThruTalk and ThruText separately to logging into a unified GetThru platform where both tools are accessible. We’ll have a unified data model and bring together parts of our admin tools, beginning with shared user accounts. The caller and messenger interfaces will remain separate. But callers and texters who use both tools will be able to see their Talk and Text assignments in one place.
We’ll have more to say about what an integrated toolset looks like as we get closer to its rollout. In the meantime, here’s a quick mockup to give you an early sense of how we are thinking about it.
Continued Improvements to ThruText
In parallel to rebuilding ThruTalk and laying the groundwork for integration, we’ll also continue improving ThruText. We are enormously proud that more than 2,000 organizations and campaigns used ThruText to send over 1 billion text messages in 2020. We handled that volume with no meaningful downtime, and we know our clients appreciate our reliability and ease of use.
We also know there are many ways that ThruText can provide even more value. Informed by feedback from hundreds of clients, including dozens of one-on-one conversations, we will focus our improvements on three broad areas:
While we are excited to take ThruText to the next level, some things won’t change: our relentless focus on speed, scalability, and usability, and our commitment to best-in-class customer support.
If you have thoughts about specific ThruText improvements and/or would be willing to test new features as we roll them out, please let us know here:
ThruText Feedback & User Research Sign Up
We learn so much from our clients about how we can make our products better, and we hope this post helps you get a sense of where we are headed. And please do keep sending us your ideas about ThruTalk, ThruText, or anything else on your mind.
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