Requests for marketing come from a variety of sources — both internal teams such as product, sales, and recruiting, as well as external partners. Without a purpose-built tool, it is easy to get overwhelmed with all the messages and demands that come in different ways from emails to phone calls to in-person conversations.
Request management in Aha! allows you to streamline that process so that you can focus on prioritizing the work that will help your team achieve its strategic goals. Even better, you can keep everyone informed of progress on their requests.
Note: the Requests section of your top menu is hidden for new Aha! accounts. To enable it, you may need to customize your menu navigation.
Create a custom requests portal
The first step to managing requests in Aha! is to create a requests portal.
To create and configure your requests portal:
- Navigate to Settings > Account > Configure portals.
- Click the Add portal button to create a new portal.
- Once you have created at least one portal for your workspace, you will see the Requests tab appear on your toolbar for that workspace.
You will find additional requests portal configuration settings in the Workspace > Requests settings.
You are able to configure multiple portal types per workspace. For example, you may choose to have a private portal for requests from a product marketing team and a public portal open to anyone in your company.
You can also configure one portal for all of your workspaces so that people do not need to decide whether their request should go to the digital marketing or content marketing team — they just need to submit to one portal, where you will sort it to its appropriate place.
When you create a portal, there are three different types to choose from:
- Submit only: Create a forum that users can fill out to submit new requests. You will need to share the location of the form with users and they will not be able to see other submitted requests.
- Private: Create a forum that is only available to registered users of specific, predefined email domains. These users can submit and view requests submitted by other registered members of that forum.
- Public: Create a forum that is visible and available to anyone who knows the URL. Public users and registered private users can both submit requests to this forum. Public users' requests will be visible to everyone. Private users' requests will be visible only to other registered private users.
Go ahead and configure your requests now if you do not need to read more about each portal type.
Submit, comment, and vote on requests
All requests portal users are free and unlimited. This means you can have as many stakeholders as you would like submitting and providing feedback on requests.
The ability for users to vote and comment on requests is especially important because it adds that person as a subscriber. Subscribers are automatically notified when status changes and administrator comments are made. This makes it simple for marketers to engage interested stakeholders for further feedback on a request, as well as easily notify stakeholders when their request has been completed. Portal users can one-click unsubscribe to portal email notifications if they do not want to receive notifications.
Users can edit their own requests in the portal after they have been submitted. If they locate a request in My requests that should be updated or refined for better context, they may select Edit request and edit the request name, description, or custom fields for the request.
You can change visibility in the Requests detail view of the Requests tab. Default visibility is as follows:
- Requests submitted by public users will be visible to anyone on the public portal.
- Requests submitted by a registered employee/partner will be visible to other employee/partners.
- Requests submitted by a registered Aha! user will be private by default and only be visible to Aha! users.
Hide portal user names
You have the option to make users within your requests portal anonymous. While we believe transparency is important, sometimes you need to provide customers or stakeholders with anonymity. This option makes it so users in a public or private portal cannot see the names of other users.
Requests submitted by others will show up as submitted by an anonymous user, while requests submitted by the user will still display to them as a request they submitted.
Aha! users viewing the request within Aha! can still see full details on who submitted the request, so marketing teams will not lose visibility into where requests come from with this setting enabled.
Change the request submitter
At times, it is helpful to change the request submitter. The most common use case for this action is when a marketer is still receiving requests through email or in discussions and wishes to submit the request on that person’s behalf. A marketing owner or contributor can set another user as the request submitter by editing the request and setting the new user as the request creator. If the customer is also a portal user and the request is made visible to them, they will be able to see that request under My requests.
Manage and promote requests to activities, master activities, or initiatives
Aha! users have three different views in the Requests tab to manage requests that have been submitted: Overview (shown), List, and Chart.
The key to request management in Aha! is that Aha! users can easily review requests, engage stakeholders who expressed interest in the request, and then promote a request to an activity or initiative.
Promoting a request to an activity, master activity, or initiative creates a link between the request and the newly created record. This also adds the total request votes to the fields visible on that record. The request will automatically be marked as planned in the requests portal after the record is created and all users on the request's notification list will be notified.
At the same time, any Aha! account users watching the request will automatically become watchers within the system. This way, when the conversation moves from a request to the Aha! record, the originally interested parties on the team can continue to follow the conversation.
When the record gets completed, the request auto-updates to reflect the completion and all subscribers are notified that the request has been completed as well.
This also works in the other direction for activities. An existing activity in Aha! can have a request created from it by clicking the More options button and selecting Create related request. This is especially useful if your activity backlog needs to be trimmed and you want to move activities back to requests, or if you have an activity planned that you want to present in your portal for people to be able to subscribe to.