“Draftbit puts me on the ‘same side of the curtain’ as my CTO, makes our development roadmap more predictable, and has saved us hundreds of thousands of dollars in freelance app development costs so far.” — Marianna Kerppola, CEO and Co-Founder of Poisera
When the idea for Poisera came to Marianna Kerppola, a seasoned tech executive and mom, she knew she had to bring it to life. Poisera is an app-based chatbot that supports moms through the highs and lows of motherhood. But Marianna knew that before leaping into Product Development Mode, she needed to validate her vision was something that moms would love.
The Poisera alpha was a web app built with a combination of no-code tools: Landbot, Wordpress, Airtable, Zapier, Autopilot HQ, Twilio, and Rebrandly. This “hacked-together” version allowed Marianna to prove that the initial concept had a chance to achieve Product-Market Fit. Additionally, as a non-developer, combining tools like these to create her MVP allowed Marianna to learn the fundamentals of APIs and data architecture—a skill she relies heavily on now.
However, her no-code stack quickly became difficult to maintain. “The product became a Frankenstein with no bug or error tracking. Updating anything was a mess,” she explained. And customization was limited. As a result, all of Poisera’s early users got nearly an identical, non-personalized experience. Their #1 piece of feedback was that the app was too repetitive.
Users also told Marianna that they wanted the Poisera experience delivered in a mobile app. For their beta launch she chose Adalo. This all-in-one no-code mobile app builder helped the Poisera team get off to a fast start. It was simple to connect Airtable, and the release process was easy for non-developers.
But without access to source code or low-level customization, sophisticated functionalities like in-app payments, advanced authentication, or product marketing analytics simply weren’t possible. And the tools weren’t developer-friendly. “It was impossible for us to predict development timelines, because everything was a black box. And the lack of a wall between testing and production environments made testing new features out of the question,” recalls Marianna.
“No-code tools are great for starting out, validating, and prototyping. But once you are ready to build commercial-grade solutions they limit you strategically.”
“As our product became more sophisticated, with more dynamic features, we needed more customized tools to grow,” continues Marianna, “No-code tools are great for starting out, validating, and prototyping. But once you are ready to build commercial-grade solutions they limit you strategically.”
As soon as the beta launched, the Poisera began their search for a commercial-grade app builder.
After their beta, Marianna wanted a tool that allowed her to collaborate with her CTO, David, more closely. Access to app source code and custom code import is what initially settled them on Draftbit. Suddenly, Marianna and David found themselves “on the same side of the curtain.” Integrating sophisticated tools like Segment—which would’ve taken months to implement in no-code tools—took just one week to implement in Draftbit.
Surprisingly, they found Draftbit just as appealing for non- and semi-technical users. “We built our landing page in Webflow, and Draftbit has a very similar GUI, making it a streamlined transition,” said Marianna. Now, she says, she can make UX edits in minutes. And just the other day, she added six new endpoints to the app; each one took less than a minute to set up, test, and bind to the app UI.
As a product team, Poisera is humming on all cylinders with Draftbit. Roadmap planning has become more predictable and steady, and testing new features is lightning fast. All of this frees Marianna up to spend more time focusing on the business.
“With Draftbit, we can nimbly create changes in the UI based on feedback, rather than a long drawn out dev process. This will add to our brand perception as one that is super responsive to moms and their needs.”
Now that the first production version of Poisera is launched in the app stores, Marianna is excited to focus on customer acquisition and iterating the product. She realizes her job as an app founder is, in many ways, just beginning. Says Marianna, “With Draftbit, we can nimbly create changes in the UI based on feedback, rather than a long drawn out dev process. This will add to our brand perception as one that is super responsive to moms and their needs.”