By Brian Jensen – Fishidy Founder and President
As the end of the year quickly approaches, I thought it was important to look back on what’s been a great year for Fishidy. Our first year in business was eventful and exciting, to say the least. After incorporating in late fall of 2010, we successfully built and launched the beta Fishidy.com platform, a location-specific social network dedicated to anglers. We hired a team to work on Fishidy and developed lasting relationships with some well-known brands and companies within the industry.
In July, we launched our beta version of Fishidy.com (1.0). Our initial development was often grueling, but also truly rewarding and exciting as we created new, innovative ways for anglers to connect with each other with waterways and with fish! Our beta launch occurred just in time for the 2011 ICAST show, the fishing industry’s largest tradeshow attended by over 8,000 fishing-related businesses.
Fishidy was a hit at the show — we received major props from some well known fishing personalities and fishing legends. NBC Sports featured us in a short video and we even got some love from our friends in the Netherlands. It was a successful show and some of our team members even found time to enjoy the Vegas nightlife…maybe a little too much.
Since ICAST we’ve been busy beta testing and conducting intensive development sprints all in preparation for some major changes and enhancement to the website…stay tuned for that. Our beta testing process has been incredible. Not only have our testers provided valuable feedback, we also added thousands of users to the site! A big thank you to all of those who provided feedback! We released new features including waterway pages, site design improvements, a print map feature, and weather and moon phase widgets.
We were lucky to add some new rock star employees including Carie Wlos and Drew Gierach. Carie Wlos is our director of marketing. She’s a social media junkie and loves the challenge of developing and branding a new social product to the masses. Drew Gierach is our new front-end developer. And, while he doesn’t sleep very often, he definitely brings a lot to the table in regards to user experience and has a keen talent for writing clean, efficient code.
Carie and Drew joined the existing “scattered” Fishidy team located in Madison, Philadelphia, Virginia Beach, Harrisburg and Rhinelander. Developing software remotely is a huge challenge but utilizing tools like Campfire has helped us overcome this challenge. We continue to receive critical support from are two major business partners, Fishing Hot Spots and GeoDecisions. Fishing Hot Spots product line continues to grow and we are lucky to have their detailed waterway maps for over 4,000 fisheries on the interactive maps within Fishidy.
While 2011 was an amazing year, 2012 looks to be even more exciting. We’re preparing some big things for Fishidy.com in 2012, including new features, usability improvements, the launch of a mobile application, adding to our growing staff, and maybe even brewing up another batch of that delicious Fishidy brew appropriately named Fishidy Scale Ale!
Check us out, stay up-to-date on all the new features we add to Fishidy.com and keep the feedback coming!
Happy New Year!