Over the past year and a half Conspire has built and refined a powerful networking tool. Our users have found warm intros to employers, investors, sales opportunities and potential partners.
We’ve learned a lot in that time about our users and about the resource that powers Conspire: the email graph. One thing we’ve heard and observed consistently is that users are most successful when they approach Conspire with a clear purpose and a well-defined target.
In the coming months, we’ll introduce a new, more purposeful, focused Conspire that centers on the things our users want to accomplish. Instead of asking you who you want to meet, we’ll show you where the opportunities are and how to access them. Much more on that soon.
Over the coming weeks, we’ll be phasing out some parts of Conspire that aren’t essential to the new experience. Other features will live on collectively as Conspire Intros, a lighter-weight version of the general purpose search and pathfinding tool Conspire has been up to this point.
As part of the transition, we’ll be phasing out support for networks, starting by shutting down the networks dashboard at www.conspire.com/networks.
This hasn’t been an easy decision. The groups and organizations we belong to are an important part of how we identify and access opportunities.
But a network is only as powerful as the connections between its members, and Conspire already captures those in the email graph. If you’re a former Techstars founder or employee and you’re interested in working at a Techstars company, chances are you already know someone there or have a contact who does. That’s the nature of a powerful network.
On the other hand, the fact that someone in one of your networks knows your target doesn’t help if you don’t know that person or share a contact in common with them. At the end of the day, the question is who has a real relationship with whom.
We know users have put time and energy into building networks on Conspire. Network admins can contact us to export a list of their members, including email addresses, to facilitate the transition to another tool. We’ll be emailing network admins over the coming weeks to explain the change and make sure everyone who needs it gets their membership data out of Conspire.
Since the beginning, email stats have been part of Conspire in one way or another. We enjoy, and we know our users enjoy, tracking their communication behavior on Conspire. But at the end of the day it’s the relationships reflected by your communication that make Conspire powerful.
For that reason, we’re shutting down the stats dashboard at www.conspire.com/dashboard.
We’ve talked to some of you who use Conspire as a quantified self tool—FitBit for your email—as much as or more than a networking tool. While that’s not the right direction for Conspire as a company, we want to hear from you if you need our help to finish a self-measuring project you’ve started with Conspire.
You should also contact us if there’s a tool you want to build for Conspire users that leverages the raw data we collect. Internally, Conspire continues to observe who users email, when and how often in order to score their relationships, and we’d be excited to partner with someone who wants to make that data available to users—with their permission—in a meaningful, visually compelling way.
Network Health Report Email
As we prepare for the transition to a new Conspire, and to pave the way for judicious email communication focused around the new product, we will stop sending Network Health Report emails after the week of November 23–27.
Maintaining a healthy network by keeping in touch with the people who matter is a key part of a rewarding, successful career. When done right, keeping in touch is its own reward—reconnecting with an old friend or former colleague is fun and invigorating. The fact that they can help you accomplish your professional goals is the icing on the cake.
As a startup, though, we need to focus on building and refining our core functionality: connecting people with opportunities. We may revisit the Network Health Report in the future, but until we’re ready to ship a truly indispensable version of it, we will set it aside to make room for email communications focused on what you’ve asked Conspire to help you accomplish.
Conspire has always been, and it will continue to be, all about accessing your network. Search is one important way of leveraging your connections, and it isn’t going away.
On the other hand, a search tool is only as powerful as your ability to figure out who or what to search for. In the new Conspire, helping users identify their targets will be front and center. For the use cases we cover, users won’t need to search for people or companies by name.
To continue supporting other use cases, search will live on in the form of Conspire Intros. Those of you who come to Conspire looking to connect with a particular person or company will be able to use Conspire Intros to find your best paths to them the same way you do today.
We’ll also continue to support and expand on our Chrome web browser plugin. Existing inside users’ favorite tools and workflows is important to Conspire as it exists now and in its new form. The plugin is a key way in which we deliver value right where and when you need it.
To Be Continued
I realize this announcement has been more about what’s going away than what’s coming. We’re excited to show you what we’re cooking up, and we promise not to keep you waiting for long. In the meantime, please let us know if you have questions about the changes or what they mean for you.