How We Created an Open API (and Added 1,000 New Integrations with Zapier)

Jan 10, 2018 by John Keith in meeting technology, release announcement (6 minute read)

 

Originally Published: July 16, 2016 when Zapier had 500+ Applications!

We began planning our public API implementation in late 2015. We had numerous requests for full Read/Write API access to the data model and were responding to stated customer needs.

By early 2016 we had the first version of the API tested and preview-ready. But an interesting thing happened -- we started hearing that people wanted a "simplicity layer" on top of the programmer-level API. What form would that take, exactly?

We started hearing that people wanted a "simplicity layer" on top of the programmer-level API

Well boy howdy, were we ever glad to find Zapier! Here's the thing, Zapier provides a "point solution"-oriented approach that addresses specific needs that real people in the real word have identified—needs that were outside our direct experience.

The core trigger-action model implemented by Zapier is super easy for non-technical users, and the promise of building a simplicity layer was compelling and real. With Zapier's codeless integrations ("Zaps"), extending Lucid Meetings with workflow automation became easy as pie.

The Bottom Line

By developing a Zapier application (this is the piece that each online service builds to expose their service via Zapier), we gained several immediate benefits for our nascent API work:

  • an independent software application using our API,
  • a challenge to improve and extend our API in interesting ways,
  • immediate integration opportunities with hundreds of other services,
  • an opportunity to talk about easy-to-use integrations with our user community.

We were super excited to launch both the API and hundreds of Zapier-based integrations just a few months later.

But here's the biggest takeaway—in the short time since our initial Zapier release we've gained another 500 integration opportunities, simply by being part of the Zapier ecosystem!

As a service provider, we're thrilled to have our integration reach extended every day as new applications are launched on Zapier. And as customer advocates, we're even happier when those applications make life easier for users of our platform and services.

Read on for more background on our integration approach. Or skip all that and just start boosting your productivity by automating Lucid Meetings workflows this New Year.

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Topics: meeting technology, release announcement

The Anatomy of Meeting Notes That People Will Use

May 12, 2016 by Elise Keith in release announcement, tips & techniques (8 minute read)

(Tip: Be sure not to miss the downloadable business meeting notes template at the end of the story)

Return Leverage, one of Lucid’s Enterprise clients, found our downloadable meeting notes to be less helpful than they’d hoped. Toby Lucich from Return Leverage asked if we could improve the exports to help make it easier for busy professionals to read the meeting notes. We’re thrilled to have had the opportunity to learn from his experience and improve the exports.

Since we made these changes in collaboration with Return Leverage, we asked Toby if he’d be willing to share more about why this format works, and how his company uses it to drive meeting results with clients. Happily, he agreed.


Toby Explains Why Formatting Can’t Suck

Toby Lucich, Return Leverage Founder and CEO

As an entrepreneur and management consultant, I’ve now worked with hundreds of business leaders in organizations big and small, for-profit and non-profit, both founder-led and professionally managed. I’ve worked with organizational leaders at all levels that have been charismatic, visionary, thought-provoking, strategic, detail-oriented; some have also been distracted, impatient, disengaged, incompetent, or simply apathetic. Leaders come in all shapes and sizes.

The common challenges I’ve seen all leaders face are the overly-packed calendar, shifting expectations, soft commitments, impending deadlines, and never enough time to get it all done.

Regardless of the client or their culture, our first obligation is fundamentally about effective communication. We believe that every single client deserves our best effort to capture and communicate the most critical ideas and actions that will efficiently and effectively turn ideas into actions, and actions into successful business results.

How this information is presented is a critical first step.

A clean, easy-to-read format is a powerful first impression in shifting the value from meeting notes toward meeting agreements or records for your stakeholders. You never know which meeting is going to change the course of the company.

We’ve recently collaborated with Lucid to redesign the exported report. Here's some of the design thinking that went into the new format.

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Topics: release announcement, tips & techniques

Fast and easy: Schedule Recurring Meetings in Lucid

Mar 30, 2016 by Elise Keith in release announcement (4 minute read)

Join a Live Webinar!
Getting Started with Lucid Meetings
Tuesdays at 5PM Eastern / 2PM Pacific
Wednesdays at 1PM Eastern / 10AM Pacific
Click here for details

Cadence. Pulse. Rhythm. Flow.

Teams that work well together get into a groove. They create agreements about how they’ll communicate, and they meet regularly. Whether it’s a daily huddle, a bi-weekly check-in, or a monthly committee meeting, most groups working together establish a regular, repeating meeting time. The regular meeting is a key tool in achieving the organizational discipline required to perform at a high level.

Lucid Meetings now supports the ability to schedule these repeating meetings using your favorite meeting template, making this the fastest and easiest way to get your team’s regular meetings set up.

For the longest time, we resisted creating a way for people to schedule a whole bunch of regular meetings at once. This was a well-meaning but wrong-headed mistake, because the new repeating meeting feature is crazy useful. (Largely my fault. I’m sorry.)

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Topics: release announcement

The Lucid Meetings Visual Event Calendar

Jan 18, 2016 by John Keith in meeting technology, release announcement (10 minute read)

Join a Live Webinar!
Getting Started with Lucid Meetings
Tuesdays at 5PM Eastern / 2PM Pacific
Wednesdays at 1PM Eastern / 10AM Pacific
Click here for details

My ice storm-induced, "bonus" project during the 2015 end-of-year holiday break was focused on improvements to the Lucid Meetings visual event calendar.

While we've had our visual calendar display for a couple years now, I always intended the calendar to be more fully interactive for people who prefer calendar-style interactions with our meeting platform. With a little time on my hands, it was finally time to tackle this project!

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Topics: meeting technology, release announcement

Lucid Integrated Audio: Turbobridge Perfected

Nov 10, 2015 by John Keith in meeting technology, release announcement (14 minute read)

Join a Live Webinar!
Getting Started with Lucid Meetings
Tuesdays at 5PM Eastern / 2PM Pacific
Wednesdays at 1PM Eastern / 10AM Pacific
Click here for details

Lucid Meetings is a sophisticated technology platform for running excellent meetings with your (remote) team and clients. The platform addresses three significant pain points for the modern meeting organizer:

  1. How do I create a shared meeting experience when people are not in the same room?
  2. How do I run meetings that consistently get results and favorable reviews?
  3. How do I manage all the audio, video, and screensharing technology needed for online meetings?

We write regularly about "meeting best practices"  that address the first two points, focusing quite a bit on soft skills and organizational methodology. In this post we're taking a different tack by looking deeply at one of the technology issues in point three: managing the conference calling requirements for online meetings.

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Topics: meeting technology, release announcement

Creating a Customer-Focused, Risk-Free Pricing Model

Jun 23, 2015 by John Keith in release announcement (5 minute read)

Pricing is hard.

As a software-as-a-service company, you want pricing that is:   

  • Easy to understand
    So people can quickly figure out what they’d pay.
  • Competitive
    Not too cheap, not too expensive, and easy to match up when comparing alternatives. 
  • Sustainable
    If you aren’t relying on outside investors or advertising, then you need to establish prices that support your business.

We’ve struggled with this! We tried several different approaches to our pricing strategy, seeking one that works for our customers and for us as a business. Each time we made a shift, we felt like we were getting closer, but it still wasn’t right. We just didn’t feel like we’d nailed it.

Until now.

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Topics: release announcement

Whoa! Calendar, Dashboard and Calendar Subscriptions for Lucid Meetings

Aug 26, 2014 by Elise Keith in release announcement (3 minute read)

The latest Lucid Meetings update includes the new calendar and a completely redesigned dashboard described below, plus many subtle loving touches we'll leave for you to discover on your own.

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Topics: release announcement

Meeting requests, invitations, and follow-up meeting email: improvements in Lucid Meetings

Jun 18, 2014 by Elise Keith in release announcement (3 minute read)

(The post below covers a recent Lucid Meetings release. Check out one of our latest post that breaks down the anatomy of the perfect meeting invitation email and includes downloadable business meeting invitation templates!)


Despite all the fervor around social networking, unified communications and group chat, email remains the most used and most trusted form of collaboration in the workplace today.

No other communication channel can match email for reliability and ease of use, especially when working with clients and people outside your company.

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Topics: release announcement