A social media feed is always hungry, and for marketing and communication managers, providing social channels with a steady diet of eye-catching content is a must. Startup PostCreator saw opportunity in this 24/7 media demand — why not create a tool that helps users easily design and post branded social images from any device? We used an MVP approach to develop the app’s javascript-based photo editor, provide integration with Stripe for payment processing, and handle simultaneous connections with multiple social media platforms.

  • Challenge

    Build a web app that can create and post branded social media content from any device, and support paid user accounts.

  • Solution

    Take an MVP approach — focus on developing the core features of a freemium version of the app before layering on enhancements.

  • Results

    An HTML5/Ruby on Rails web app that features Photoshop-esque tools, snappy performance, and simultaneous posting to multiple social channels.

How we did it.

  • MVP Development

    A lean team launched the first version of the app in less than five weeks with minimal design and a few core features: integration with Facebook and Stripe, and basic image editing to add images, text, shapes, and colors.

  • The Right Tech

    PostCreator is a Ruby on Rails application that leverages EaselJS, HTML5, Browserify, Gulp, CoffeeScript, and Backbone. Finding the right tech was key because the photo editing needed to feel just as smooth as it does on a desktop app.

  • Stripe Integration

    After the successful launch of the MVP, we built out two basic account models: a free plan with limited features, and a Pro plan for $9.99 a month with added fonts, an AdMaker grid, more shapes, and access to additional social media platforms.

  • We achieved basic app functionality very quickly, completing the initial phase of the project over a 4-week sprint. We then began collecting user feedback on the MVP, which helped us focus on refining the features that were most important to our users.

  • Canvas interactions (particularly drag resizing) proved to be a significant development challenge. To keep the project moving, we implemented some less-complicated resizing options — including sliders, dropdowns, and inputs — to provide basic functionality as we refined our ideal interaction.

  • PostCreator makes it easy to simultaneously post to multiple social platforms. Pre-set canvas sizes help users customize their posts to each channel, and the AdMaker grid tool ensures content is compliant with Facebook’s 20% copy rule.