The perfect release note 🖋😍
Finally what you’ve being waiting for. How you piece all this together, and it’s broken down for you in nothing more than plain text:
The introduction. A short paragraph. Make this personal if appropriate. Eg. "Season greetings, everyone! You asked, Santa listened - this update is exactly what you ask for this Christmas."
• An extra short summary of these notes goes here.
*** NEW ***
• This is where you layout any new features.
• Explain where abouts these features are within your app.
• How do users find these new features?
• Which users will this benefits, or how exactly will this benefits them?
• E.g. "[Who benefits?] Apple Watch users will be particularly happy with the latest release. [Why?] We now automatically support handoff with your Mac. [Where/how?] Don’t forget to have your bluetooth turned on, you can do it]!"
*** IMPROVEMENTS ***
• If improving an existing feature, rather than something that’s brand new, use the "Improvements" title instead of "New".
• If you've improved something as a result of user feedback, consider a sentence like, "you asked, we listened". A great way to make your users feel valued.
*** FIXED ***
• List out any major bugs that might have affected many users.
• If you've only addressed minor fixes, or nothing specific, use something like:
• E.g. "Minor Bug fixes"
• Keep the "Fixed" title if you've included other titled sections.
The sign off. Similar to the introduction, this could be personalised if appropriate. You could easily have a couple of variations of this in your locker.
Finally Feedback. Add the feedback email address and welcome users thoughts. Eg. “Submit your suggestions for improvements to [email protected] we value your feedback”
A quote from my old boss, which has stuck with me for a long time:
The gap from ‘average’ to ‘good’ is big, people need to work very hard to get to ‘good’. But, to go from ‘good’ to ‘excellent’ it’s only 2mm extra distance. Yet people are happy to settle at ‘good’. They never know just how close they were to achieving something truly excellent — Danyl Bosomworth (based on Tony Robbins’ 2mm Rule)
Well formatted and well written release notes, are a great example of that 2mm difference. A difference that will help push your app from ‘good’ to ‘excellent’.
If you’re a designer reading this, go to your Release Managers and Project Owners with your understanding of typography and layout (not to mention the work you should be proud of completing), and help them reach that extra 2mm.