Flic for Mac Update

The Flic Mac app is an essential tool for any Apple computer owner. From productivity and presentation apps to music and smart home control, create shortcuts triggered by the push of a Flic button. Just like you would on your phone, but even better: unlock Mac-specific actions you don’t have on your phone.

Download App

 

We’ve fixed some bugs and updated the Mac app’s features for an even smoother experience. Just pair your Flic button and add actions as you would in the phone app. Here are some of our favorite actions:

Keynote: Fully control your presentation with Flic as a clicker, like Tim Cook should have done in the recent Apple Keynote opening film.

 

Spotify: Play/pause your music or skip to the next song with the push of a button. No phone needed.

 

LIFX: These amazing smart lights now work through a local network connection. This means that turning your lights on/off has literally almost no delay.

 

Keyboard Maestro: Simulate any key press or combination. Ideal for making keyboard shortcuts even shorter!

It’s also a great way to add interactivity to your project with no programming skills needed. We used Keyboard Maestro to make an easy way to choose a video to watch at our stand at the CES fair last year.

IFTTT: The sky is the limit! The Mac app now supports IFTTT tags too. Here are some of the applets Flic users love.

Xcode: Run, Build, Clean… Shortcuts every developer needs while coding.

 

Speaking about coding, we’re about to launch a new integration in the Flic app you’ll love… Stay tuned 😉

 

Here’s a list of changes in version 1.1.3:

– New: LIFX Local Network action

– Improved: IFTTT tag feature now supported

– Improved: Keynote now supports Start/Stop presentation

– Fixed: IKEA action now supports latest bridge firmware


Download App


What features would you love to see in the Mac app? Let us know in the comments!

Track your soda habits with Flic and Google Analytics

Google Analytics is normally used to track visitors on websites, but with a little creativity and a Flic button, it can be used to track events in the real world.

 

When Google Analytics launched universal analytics, they also launched a new API, called Measurement Protocol, to send data to Google Analytics from all kinds of places – not just from websites.

Today I will show you how you can use your Flic buttons and Google Analytics to track events that happen in the physical world. Like when someone takes a Pepsi cola from the fridge.

To be able to track Pepsi consumption in Google Analytics you need 4 things:

  1. A Flic button to push, when you grab a Pepsi
  2. The event data to be sent to Google Analytics
  3. A URL you can request, which will send the data to Google Analytics
  4. A nice way to visualize the data

 

1) Flic buttons are perfect for sending data to Google Analytics

I recently received my first Flic Hub as the latest addition to my Smart Home. I use the clever little buttons all around my house to control my other smart devices, such as my Philips Hue lights.

I have a Flic button taped under our couch table, which we use to change between different Philips Hue light modes, like a dimmed light for movie time.

 

The buttons can do three things: one click, two clicks, and a long click.

Every type of click can easily be configured to do a specific thing in the Flic app. Anything from Spotify, Philips Hue, IFTTT, Slack, Zapier, Chromecast, etc. can be controlled.

Basically communicating with a lot of predefined services.

Flic can request any URL = unlimited options

Besides the long list of predefined services, the Flic button can also be configured to request a given URL, defined in the app. This means you can call any given API or create your own API endpoints, that can do whatever you configure – the sky is the limit.


An example of such a URL is the Google Analytics API (Measurement Protocol) which can be used to send a tracking request to Google Analytics when you click the button.

2) Build the Measurement Protocol URL which sends the data

Google Analytics has a very neat Hit Builder to build the URL for you to call.

 

The documentation also includes a list of frequently used examples that can be used as a template to build from. In this example, I will use an event to track when someone grabs a Pepsi. Google Analytics events can consist of multiple data fields, that is structured in a hierarchy in the Google Analytics interface.

 

  • Event category
  • Event action
  • Event label
  • Event value

 

 

 

The complete Google Analytics event request consists of the following values:

 

  • TID is your Google Analytics property ID
  • CID is the website users cookie ID, which is not relevant in this case. We will, therefore, click the round arrow icon to generate a random ID.
  • ec is the Event Category and is set to “Fridge”.
  • ea is the Event Action and is set to the Pepsi you grab from the fridge, in this case, a Pepsi.
  • el is the Event Label and is set to the person who takes a Pepsi, in this case, me.
  • ev is the Event Value and is set to 330 because there are 330 ml in a can of Pepsi in Denmark.

 

We use the different clicks (1 click, 2 clicks, long click) to track different people taking a Pepsi. You could also use the different clicks to track different beverages like beer, soda, water, etc.

 

3) Validate the final URL

Hit Builder can validate the final URL and make sure all values are correct before you start using it.

 


Now that the URL is validated, we need to add

https://www.google-analytics.com/collect?

In front of the URL to get the complete URL we can insert into the Flic app.
This becomes the final URL:

https://www.google-analytics.com/collect?v=1&t=event&tid=UA-12345-1&cid=2dfc43a9-f225-4e20-81a8-af29ae8c834b&ec=Fridge&ea=Pepsi&el=Jacob&ev=330

 

Insert the URL in the Flic app

I have configured three things the button can do:

 

  • 1 click: My wife takes a Pepsi
  • 2 clicks: I take a Pepsi
  • Long click: We take a Pepsi to share

 

In the app, I enter these three urls.

 

 

Testing the button in Real-time Analytics

Time to test the button!

 

1 click, 2 clicks, long click.

 

And then you just need to mount the button in an obvious place so you remember to click when you take a Pepsi from the fridge.

 

View the new data in Google Analytics

After the button has been mounted it is time to view the new data in Google Analytics.

 

 

Very cool, but let’s add some charts.

 

4) Dashboard in Google Data Studio

By taking advantage of the built-in dimensions in Google Analytics you can break down the events by hour and day, to see a what time during the day and week, you are most likely to grab a cold Pepsi.

 

 

You can change the name of the Y-axis from “Total events” to something like “Pepsi during the day” by clicking on “AUT” in the blue box.

 

We drink most Pepsi in the first days of the week

At least that’s the trend at my house. What is the trend for you?

8 pm is Prime Time for Pepsi in our family

 

It is clear to see that we often enjoy a cold Pepsi when our 2-year-old daughter is asleep at around 8 pm and it is time to relax on the couch.

 

And what better thing to watch on the TV than the new Data Studio dashboard broadcasted to a Chromecast.

 

Flic button at the changing table?

I love adding data to decisions (or important bets). Therefore we also have a Flic button at the changing table.

 

 


About the author: Jacob Worsøe is a Google Analytics expert from Denmark who enjoys collecting data to better understand the world around him – both online and offline. Flic buttons is a perfect way to collect data about the offline world. Follow him on Twitter at @jacobworsoe.

Article originally published (In Danish) on https://www.jacobworsoe.dk

Spooky tricks with Flic

Scare your guests with Flic this Halloween! Here are some sneaky tricks you can try.

Flashing electricity

Press Flic discretely to suddenly kill all the lights in the room. If you’re all at the dinner table and no one has their phone out then your friends will think the power is out. Press again after a while to turn the lights on. Make sure you act surprised!

If you have music running, add a play/pause trigger to a Flic press as well, to make the effect stronger.

Pro tip 1: Some smart lights (especially LIFX) are quick in flashing. To make creepy lightning flashes, add a short stroboscope effect to a double click of your Flic button!

Pro tip 2: If you’re running Android, you can delay an action after a click of Flic. Here is a spooky sequence idea: Click to turn the lights off and kill the music. Act as you have no idea what happened. 30 seconds later, have your lights flash, and a thunder sound play. Repeat a few times, then – in total darkness – play the intro to Black Sabbath (by Black Sabbath) loud and make your lights flash in dim red. Now, the Halloween party can start!

Monstrous music

Flic is great to take control of the music without your guests understanding how. If you want to scare people, interrupt the dinner music with something unexpected.

For dark rock, try these:

For electronic music, try these:

Sudden TV horror

Youtube is filled with creepy videos. Run Flic with Chromecast to suddenly turn something unsettling on to your living room TV. Perhaps the classic Salad Fingers?

This one is a real scare to surprise someone with if you turn the volume up – not for the faint of heart:

Creepy text messages

Imagine having dinner with your spouse. At the same time, you get a text message from him or her:
“I was captured by a doppelganger who is impersonating me. I got free, on my way home. If you think you’re with me, it’s not me!! Ask about our honeymoon.”

Set it up with Flic and press to send the text when you see that your partner is watching his or her cellphone. Set a second similar text on double click. Act as if you don’t remember your history together. If you have an Android, why not set up your phone to call your partner when things heat up. As he or she picks up, maybe it’s time to show how you did the prank!

Bonus prank:

Put your phone under a cushion and use Flic’s random fart generator to make your guests blush! Just like the classic fart cushion, but digital!

Creeps,
Joacim and the Flic Team

Three ways Flic made work better

How to use Flic to increase productivity at work? Here are three examples from our customers.

The Sales Office

An American direct-sales team bought Flic for their employees and put one on each desk.

When employees complete a regular sale, they click their button. It makes the lights in their office flash in green and a message be sent out in their internal communications channel.

When they complete a major sale, they double click their button, and three things happen: The room flashes in red, a short siren sounds, and the sales team gets a push notification that says who made the deal.

 

 

At a MASSIVE sale, they hold their Flic down. It makes the entire room go bananas – the lights go stroboscope, and their sound system starts playing the Imperial March (you know, the Star Wars song). A message is then sent to the receptionist to bring champagne to the sales office. Lastly, a push notification goes out to the entire company so that everyone knows who is the rock-star salesperson.

The Consultants

Time reporting is an annoying task.

Expert consultants at a German IT Security consultancy company have heaps of parallel projects they need to time track.

 

They now use Timely to monitor each project, triggered by Flic buttons connected to their Macs. Time tracking can also be achieved using Microsoft Flow or IFTTT, your working hours for each project will be nicely displayed in a google sheet.

The Institution

A Swedish institution bought custom printed Flic buttons as gifts to their employees.

 

 

Each desk has a custom Flic with the logo of the organization. They use the buttons to call for lunch, call for meetings and to DND their calendars.

Increase your productivity

Flic is made so that you can increase your productivity, without disturbance from notifications or phone interactions. The examples above utilize our Slack integration, smart lights (such as LIFX, Philips Hue, and IKEA Trådfri), SONOS, our Timely collaboration and Google Calendar.

Many other Flic integrations are helpful at work. With the Keynote integration for Mac, you can use Flic to change slides when you present. Lots of Apple employees use Flic for their internal presentations!

External services like IFTTT, Zapier and Microsoft Flow connects Flic to practically anything. Our HTTP/Internet request function makes it possible for you to connect Flic with your own applications (see all Flic integrations).

Speaking of your apps

There are solutions you can use to implement Flic support to your iOS, Mac, Android, Linux, Windows, and Raspberry PI apps. Feel free to browse our GitHub!

Bonus productivity tool

A Pomodoro timer is a well-proven tool to concentrate better and to increase productivity. It times you to work for 20 minutes and take a 5-minute break. Repeat four times, and then take a longer break.

You can use a Flic button to trigger a Pomodoro timer if you are an Android user, and I encourage you to try! If you don’t have an Android, let us know if you want us to enable it on other platforms.

 

Custom printed Flics

We can make Flic buttons with your custom print design. It’s an innovative gift for clients and swag 2.0 for your colleagues. You can choose to have it working with the Flic Apps, or with your business applications exclusively.

If you want some for Christmas, now is the time to start.

Flic success at IFA – Still very unique


IFA – One of Europe’s biggest trade show for Consumer electronics

We are back from IFA. For those of you not familiar with IFA, it’s the world’s leading trade show for consumer electronics and home appliances held in Berlin, Germany. Tech enthusiasts from all over the world are there to see what’s new in the market and what’s about to come out. IFA brings together almost 2 000 exhibitors and around 60-70 000 trade visitors and it is a great way for us to meet distributors, partners and customers in one place in a short space of time. Together with our friends at Hardware Club, we demonstrated Flic at IFA NEXT, a dedicated and exclusive area where new and innovative tech is on display.

Big interest for Flic

It’s our second year at IFA, and it is fun to see that the interest for Flic remains high, disregarding if its distributors, retailers, companies or consumers. What fascinates people the most about Flic is that you can do so many different things in such a simple matter. There is no product like Flic on the market and everyone can use Flic where they can find their simple and everyday use of it. Also, Flic is still very unique since it functions with so many different brands and smart home platforms which many other smart home devices do not.

Flic – branded buttons for corporate gifting

This year, we also had a more B2B focus than previous years and it was great to see the positive response. Over the years, we have had a core B2C focus but have made some deals where companies have been able to brand their own buttons (for instance “OneClickPizza” button with Dominos or recently the “SaveMe” button with Clarion Hotels.) Since the spring, we have turned this into a new line of business where companies can print their own logo/brand on buttons and give it away or use it as a Flic button, we simply call it Flic Corporate Gifting.

This is the perfect gift to your loyal customers, best suppliers or great employees. People are tired of getting USB sticks, Powerbanks or small Bluetooth speakers. Flic is a unique gift and can be used by anyone that has a smartphone and something that the customer could use everyday with your brand on it. We also have had several companies order customized buttons for special events or marketing activities.

Make sure you contact us now for your customized Flic for the upcoming holidays. We are on back order for customized buttons but thanks to our hard-working team we should still be able to ship within some weeks depending on the order size.

Visit https://flic.io/corporate-gifting for information about corporate buttons & gifting.

Whats next..

So what’s next you might wonder.. well, we have plenty of things coming up. We have our next product the Flic Hub which we are proud to add to the Flic family later this year and we have many great stories to share regarding the use of the Flic Hub in people’s home and especially within B2B. You can still order the Flic Hub at a discounted price here.

Other than that, we find more and more different use cases for Flic and thanks to that we reach new customers all the time. I can promise you that we have some cool stories to share in the next coming months, so stay tuned.

Daniel Abdiu – Chief Operating Officer

Musicians turn the page with Flic

Flic Page turner for forScore

Edit: Please note that the forScore implementation in the Flic App for iOS is not officially supported by forScore. Please see forScore’s list of supported accessories here. 

We constantly see new use cases for Flic buttons, in fields we never thought about. Recently, we found an idea at the Flic Ideas Forum that we decided to explore.

“O…….M………G

IT WORKED!!!

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!!

This is a quality of life changer!!!

I will be sure to share with all my teacher friends.

Thank you again!!

Jim”

 

Can Flic buttons be a quality-of-life changer? Jim above, a music teacher in Qatar, found out that he can use a Flic button to turn pages on an iPad.

Newzik app in action

Simple as that may seem, Jim now uses Flics to turn pages of sheet music when he teaches and performs live. As a conductor, he can hold the tiny buttons in the same hand as his conductor’s baton and press when it’s time to change page.

Before Flic, he had to interrupt his flow by touching the mounted iPad in front of him. Jim uses forScore to read notes, an iPad app for sheet music.

Newzik, a digital sheet music app with a focus on collaborative music, work just as well with Flic. Aurélia Azoulay, Head of Business Development at Newzik, shares her thoughts:

“Using Flic to turn pages is with Newzik is a great idea. Our partner orchestras and teaching classes often raise the fact that they have to look at their feet to use pedals. With Newzik’s cloud-based platform, a conductor or a teacher could even use one Flic to turn the pages of all the musicians’ iPads synchronized.”

The Setlists app

Classical music is not the only application for Flic as a page turner. David Hellgren is a guitar player and singer from Sweden, who read lyrics with the Setlists app for iPad when he performs.

“I’ve got Flic mounted on my guitar band, and press it to scroll the Setlist App when I sing. It just looks awkward if I would reach for the iPad when I perform.”

 

We just released a new version of the Flic App for iOS that includes support for forScore, Newzik, and Setlists. If you are a musician yourself, try it out! If you would like to share your experiences, a short note on the Flic Community is much appreciated! And if you know professional musicians that may find this useful, please share.

Flic can be mounted on instruments and stands.

 

Read more and order a Flic button here.

 

Next thing? We suspect that Flic is being extensively used on motorcycles. If you use it that way, please let us know – we would love a short interview to see how we can make Flic better for you.

Love, The Flic Team.

 Flic for professional athletes

Flic is a proud sponsor of Swedish Open. All tennis players get their own special edition Flic button to keep track on their training.

Flic - sponsors of Swedish Open

How it started

It’s a Monday morning, and I just arrived at the office sitting with my first cup of coffee and going through the inbox. There is a mail from a person who loves Flic and would like to give us the opportunity to reach out to the professional tennis players at Swedish Open in Båstad this year.

At first, I was a bit skeptical. How would professional tennis players use Flic? I realized that Flic could be the perfect training partner for athletes. We started the conversation to see what we could offer to the professional tennis players attending Swedish Open.

Just as any individual, you sometimes need some extra help to make it simpler and more convenient for you when training. As a tennis player, you need to keep track of progress and how you perform on each training to become a better player.

What if you could track how many successful aces you do, count your training reps quickly or, for instance, track your training exercise with just a click of a button. With Flic, you can do all that and more without touching the smartphone while doing it.

 

The sponsorship

To have a successful sponsorship, you need to find the correct audience and make sure your product and brand applies to them. We thought for a while on how to make this as good as possible. Our CEO Elin came up with the idea that we should create an exclusive Swedish Open edition of Flic to all the tennis players attending the tournament.

As we are an innovative startup, we do not hesitate to make things a reality when a good idea comes up. Our designer started working on a suggestion. The day after we had a clean design and roughly one week later we had the final version in our hands ready to send out.

Each professional tennis player attending the tournament gets one of these buttons together with instructions on how to use it for their training or other purposes. We have the opportunity to talk to the players and get their feedback on the button and see if we can find more use cases together for Flic.

Flic sponsor Swedish Open
Custom Flic buttons for the athletes.

Swedish Open

The tournament in Båstad, Sweden, is one of the highest ranked tournaments by the players themselves. They love the atmosphere around it and the treatment they get from the organizers. To be part of that and to be one of the brands supporting it is, of course, an honor. We are happy to show both the players and all the visitors our Swedish innovation that makes life simpler in so many ways both in your ordinary life and in your life as a professional athlete.

So, head over to http://flic.io and get your own Flic. Use it as your personal trainer just like the professionals, such as the famous player Tommy Haas who now uses Flic just as all the other attendees.

Flic sponsor Swedish Open
Tommy Haas, his Flic and me

Daniel Abdiu – Chief Operating Officer

How we chose the core of the Flic Hub to be GR8 – a processor.

When we dreamed up the Flic Hub, we had a wish list. It should be powered by a single board computer, an ARM System-on-Chip and run a new Linux version so we could run the latest Bluetooth version. It would retail for less than $100 and ship in October. For that dream to be a reality, we needed a dream component to power it. It was a roundabout journey, but we found it in Next Thing Co.’s GR8 microchip. It’s allowing us to build the Flic Hub that we and the Flic community dreamed it could be.

When designing the Flic Hub (determined in a rather unconventional way), we started off like a lot of people do, by building on top of a Raspberry Pi (RPi).

https://www.raspberrypi.org
Raspberry Pi 3 Model B (https://www.raspberrypi.org)

 

The RPi is awesome – cheap, available, well tested, and with a massive, dedicated developer’s community. Our tests with it went well, and we could achieve most use cases by porting code from our well tested Flic Android app.

But the RPi has way more stuff than we needed for the Flic Hub and it is too expensive. Even though RPi’s $35 may seem cheap compared to a $99 product like the Flic Hub, it’s not. Add memory chip, plastic housing, accessories, packaging, shipping, handling and reseller’s margin, and you won’t be able to make a consumer product selling for any less than $200 based on RPi.

Besides, we needed to remove some components and add some others to accommodate for our unique Bluetooth needs and the IR accessory. Both Farnell and RS components (both producers of the RPi) were willing and helpful to accommodate some changes, but the price tag was not decreasing.

With a short time-to-market, high demands and a small investment budget, we started at square one. For ages (probably more than two weeks) we sourced the earth for a feasible processor to power our Hub with the mindset that we would build the Hub from scratch.

As soon as we found a good match for a processor, they were either not available for us to buy (try buying RPi’s Broadcom processors as a small Swedish startup, I dare you) or too old. If they were not running a recent-enough Linux Kernel, we wouldn’t be able to run features of Bluetooth version 4.2 that we needed.

Another important aspect when sourcing a processor is the developer community and available documentation. If you’re a small customer to a large enterprise and you find a bug in their code, it will be tough to get the bug fixed. If you have a question, no one will be there to answer.

Our eyes turned to RPi alternatives, and after some turn-around, we were introduced to the team at Next Thing Co (NTC) and their C.H.I.P computer (then priced at $9). NTC started off with a successful crowdfunding campaign just like us. Having been in our shoes, the guys at NTC were incredibly easy to work with. When we asked NTC to fix a bug we found, they did – quickly – and they even helped us making design decisions.

C.H.I.P Pro  with GR8
C.H.I.P Pro (https://getchip.com)

Their product C.H.I.P Pro was pretty similar to what we needed for the Flic hub. For a long time (we’re talking weeks) we considered building the Hub by mounting the C.H.I.P Pro on a custom board that we made, adding the 3,5mm jack for the IR and our second Bluetooth chip. But, however small and cost-effective the C.H.I.P Pro is, it just didn’t fit in our industrial design considering our extra components. Flic Hub needs to be small and discrete.

Luckily, we didn’t have to start at square one again. NTC’s C.H.I.P Pro is driven by NTC’s GR8 chip, which in turn is based on Allwinner’s R8 processor. What NTC has done though, is to combine the cost-effective R8 with a compliant memory to reduce complexity, and they keep it updated with the right Linux Kernel. The best part – this is a processor unit we could easily buy it, in any quantity, with quick delivery.

GR8
GR8 (https://getchip.com)

The GR8 chip is well thought through and have all the things we need. It has pins for  WiFi (to connect a WiFi chip), audio (so the Hub can play music through the 3,5mm jack), IR receiver (so the IR accessory can “learn” IR commands), 5 volt digital output (so we can drive the IR LEDs) and much more cleverness.

NTC’s technical documentation is fantastic and does not require an NDA, a big differentiator to many other processors we looked at. They also have a large developer’s forum with thousands of GR8 experts and hobbyists we can ask.

The choice of GR8 was easy once we realized it was available and while the rest of the design of the Flic Hub wasn’t easy, we had the help and expertise we needed.

We’re proud to be building a new and crowdfunded product based on a fellow crowdfunded company’s GR8 product.

With Love,

Joacim

Beta testing the Flic Hub – Live!

Today, I am proud to announce that we have signed a deal with our first B2B client for the Flic Hub!

At Shortcut Labs, we always value creativity before anything else, especially formal processes and procedures. After the Flic launch, we did, however, learn the importance of continuous testing.

The Flic Hub is the perfect example on how we let creativity spur innovation and how early testing with real customers not only improved the product but also made it possible for us to launch a B2C- and a B2B line simultaneously.

The Flic Hub was not a business decision.

 

Despite no formal decision from the management, Fabian, one of our engineers, spent his last X-mas break working on the Hub. He had noticed that more and more users expressed their frustration over the smartphone dependency and Fabian himself, he also liked the idea of a Flic hub.

An alpha version of the Hub was ready for internal testing in late February 2017.

Since then, the team has made hundreds of iterations, big and small, more or less on their spare time, and almost always without anyone – or any business case – asking them to do so.

 

Creativity spurs innovation

 

One of the more notable things is an algorithm that our Lead Wizard Emil wrote. The algorithm makes it possible for the Hub to be connected to 64 buttons simultaneously, with next-to-zero delay. We’re not humble about this achievement – our industry partners are as stunned as we are and no-one has seen (nor would probably be able to replicate) anything similar.

Granted, 64 buttons at the same time may be too much for the regular smart-home use case, unless you want to build a piano. But for businesses and industries, the implications are huge. Ever since we started talking about the Flic Hub’s capacity, business opportunities and partner requests have been flowing in, way over our heads and sales capacity.

What can you do with 64 wireless buttons in a business environment? Here is a fun example that a big sales company wanted to do:

Give each sales person a Flic Button on their desk.

  • Click when they close a “small sale” – Slack in #sales and flash the room in green.
  • Double click for a “medium sale” – Notify everyone in the sales channel, flash the room in red and play a siren sound.
  • Hold for a “large sale” – Notify the entire company, flash the office in red for a long time and play the Imperial March. Message the office manager to bring champagne.

 

Live customer beta testing

 

To the team and me, testing of the Flic Hub is critical, and something we will not compromise on (we don’t want to repeat the mistakes of the first batch of Flics).

We have been running beta tests with real customers for the past four months. Without involving users early on, we simply would not know if our assumptions are right until it is too late.

Testing beta versions on loyal users are one thing, but some eyebrows were raised in the team when we set out to find live environments, with paying customers, and end-users not familiar with neither Flic nor the Flic Hub. But our curiosity overcame the fear of failure. If we couldn’t identify problems to solve and a business case to scale – why spend time on building it?

Instead of developing features for each idea that we had, (which we yet didn’t know would be attractive or not), we made the Hub compatible with Microsoft Flow, the latest contribution to automated workflows. Only by integrating Microsoft Flow, we could easily enable 100+ services for the Hub.

Flow allowed us to to be agile and test almost any request coming in from our sales pipe, without losing speed on our overall roadmap for the Hub.

One of the first live pilots we did was at Bergh’s School of Communication’s graduation show, AddX. We placed Beta hubs strategically on three different floors and set up Flic buttons in proximity to various exhibitions. Visitors interactions with the buttons were captured in a Google Sheet through Microsoft Flow and linked to a Dashboard – where the organizers could follow the visitor’s feedback.

We recorded more than 1000 interactions over the 3-day event, and we received a lot of constructive input from both visitors and the organizers.

The first big business case

So why am I so excited today? The Flic Hub is not only a big consumer success (judging from our crowdfunding campaign) but a business-to-business success as well.

Last week, in a pilot with one of the largest players in the Nordic hospitality industry, we successfully demonstrated how to connect 300 Flic buttons to 7 different Hubs.

We showed that any Flic button will work with any of the 7 Hubs and that different actions will be triggered dependent on which Hub the button is currently connected to.

The client, the use-case and the images? Sorry, secret. The outcome? Because we could prove the Hub’s capacity, we sealed our first Flic Hub business contract!

Stay tuned; we will share all details once the project goes live in September.

With Love,

Elin

Wow – that was a successful launch.

We launched The Flic Hub on Indiegogo and received $200,000 in pre-orders in less than 24 hours.

Here is how that came to be.

The Flic fans, our brand ambassadors, are the people that made this happen. Many of who have been with us, supporting us from the original launch of the Flic button. You know who you are, and even if you’re humble and think you only shared it once on Facebook – you, too, made this happen. THANK YOU.

This was our second launch on Indiegogo. Although there is an exciting month ahead of us, and we still have a lot to go until we reach the $640k of our last campaign, this was a much quicker start than last time.

In fact, we got four timed as much preorder value the first day than what we got last time. The team was excited, to say the least.

So what did we do to reach this rocket start?

We talked about the Flic Hub, months in advance.

It’s not like 2338 backers saw the Hub for the first time and decided to buy instantly – that would never happen unless you’re a big and famous consumer brand.

Quite the opposite, most of them knew what they were buying before even heading to Indiegogo. In fact, they had even scheduled exactly when to click which link, to get in as early as possible.

Many crowdfunding campaigns, startups, and early product launches make the mistake of not talking about their product in advance. Perhaps they look at Apple and the likes that keep everything disclosed until launch date. Perhaps they’re afraid someone would steal their idea and release ahead. That’s not how we have run things.

A Pre-launch referral campaign

In a successful crowdfunding campaign, it’s important to get as many interested people in as early as possible after launch. So we sell the product promise in advance and gather as many qualified email addresses ( = interested people) as possible.

We talked about the promise of the Flic Hub officially on a new site – hub.flic.io. We did not mention any details or exactly how the product would work, nor did we reveal the price of the Flic Hub. If people were interested in the promise, they were encouraged to sign up.

Once signed up, they landed on a referral campaign site with a unique and personal URL to share. The more they shared it, the greater the reward.

As long as the incentive to share is good, people will share – and surely, they did!

We asked our most loyal customers for help.

As mentioned above, we contacted our brand ambassadors. These are the people that love Flic. We gave them an even better incentive to share than what was official. They got better rewards for sharing (after all, we want to award our fans!) but also more detailed requests to post information about the Flic Hub in forums and talk about us in their channels.

Ads to the Pre-launch campaign

We ran Facebook ads to hub.flic.io with two intentions:

  1. Get more eyes, interest and email signups, spurring the referral campaign.
  2. Optimize the messaging.

The latter is arguably most important. Running several different ads is an effective way to see which text and image that are most likely to spur interest. We then used these learnings to build up the content on the Indiegogo page.

Online thunderstorm

At the time of launch, we sent out heaps of emails to our different email lists, social media posts, and much more. The message was clear – there is a limited amount of bundles at super early bird price, and the sooner you invest, the lower your price.

We shared all we could at the same time, and again, we asked our ambassadors to the same.

In advance, we had talked to a lot of news sites and had given them a set time to post. CNN, Digital Trends, Apple Insider, Slash Gear and many others released news about the launch at the same time. (This was one of the reasons that we didn’t reveal any details of the product in advance – the news site must have something new to write about!)

We found a well-reputed hunter to post the Flic Hub at Product Hunt on the same day as well (Thanks, Jack!). Product hunt is a great place to post if you know the community, and we had a lot of success with it when we launched Flic for Mac a few months ago.

All these efforts at the same time spurred a huge peak in traffic to the Flic Hub Indiegogo site and resulted in this unexpected first-day success.

Check out the Flic Hub campaign here – if you just want a Flic, you can still buy one here.

With excitement,
Joacim