This month we are all things FutureM! Read this post from Will Yapp, Vice President of Business Development at Constant Contact (a fantastic FutureM sponsor). Will dives into part two of what the future looks like for software developers in this two part post.
Will brings more than 20 years of sales and business development experience to Constant Contact. In his role, he is responsible for managing the team focused on growing the company’s technology and strategic partnerships. Follow us @CTCT_API. Prior to joining Constant Contact, Will was the SVP of Sales at Aepona (recently acquired by Intel), a Belfast-based software company in the mobile cloud services industry. Will has a vast knowledge of the telecommunications space across all aspects of the mobile ecosystem ranging from applications and services to infrastructure and devices where he has opened new markets, established new business models and provided solid revenue growth in each of these segments.
In part one of this two-part blog post, we looked at the importance of identifying and reaching your target audience, the evolution of successful API platforms, and the importance of finding a partner company that empowers developers to craft great experiences.
In this installment, we’ll dig a little deeper into factors that organizations looking to integrate should consider before making their choice. Let’s dive in!
Back to API Basics
A successful integration really begins with a quality API that developers want to use. And for this to be the case, an API should be RESTful, support JSON and standard HTTP error codes, and also have great documentation. To you techies, these sound like basics, but it’s amazing how often these things are overlooked. And to sum this up for you non-techies, these basics make life easier for developers.
In addition, it’s important to determine how flexible the API is and if the API will let you interact with the tool’s full set of features. Some organizations let software developers do everything that can be done through a web interface that can be done programmatically through their API, including account creation (even Facebook and Twitter don’t let you do this). Asking the right questions about the APIs provided can really make a huge difference between a time-intensive integration process or one that is a breeze!
A Marketplace Connecting Qualified Customers and App Developers
Successful consumer platforms all have one thing in common – they provide identity and allow third-party developers to access this identity to reduce friction during signup, onboarding, and/or payment. Take Facebook and Twitter, for example: the identity that they provide also includes your social graph, which enables application developers to show you relevant content within seconds of signing up and build tailored, social experiences without asking you to rebuild your social graph in every app.
Another example here is one that we at Constant Contact see every day. We work frequently with small business software developers and their ideal customer is typically someone who believes in using technology in his or her business, is willing to pay money for software that solves a problem or saves time, wants to find a solution that works, and will stick with it for the long haul. A platform that provides identity drives their success and given that more and more startups focused on local businesses are getting funding, a little help with standing out from the crowd is a must!
Choosing the right integration partner – one that offers a platform to reach a ready-made audience – is not an easy decision for developers. Aside from the technical abilities of the platform and APIs, make sure the partner will support your efforts. You want a partner that truly embraces the idea of building an open ecosystem that adds value for both their users and application developers.
Now that you’re well on your way to growing your business through a successful integration, be sure to check out our Constant Contact booth at FutureM to learn more about the benefits of integrating with companies like Constant Contact. We’ll see you there!
Join us at FutureM to hear more from Constant Contact!