A good product release update on slack:

  1. Has the most important takeaway at the top. Should not be more than a couple of lines
  2. Background/ Context as the first section. Add a small paragraph for people to understand the product better.
  3. Bullet points for each section.
  4. Impact, both in terms of metrics moved as well as customer feedback.
  5. Learnings and next steps.
  6. Shout out to collaborators.
  7. Links to relevant docs, including the product spec, for people who want to dig deeper.
  8. Seeks help on the next steps, if relevant.
  9. Gets people excited.
  10. Tags relevant stakeholders for whom the update is most relevant.
  11. The update is broken into relevant sections (sections are mentioned above).
  12. Has emojis.

Not related to the update, but equally important: Anticipate questions on the update, especially the impact numbers, and be ready with more relevant data to back the update.

This is mostly for Slack. For a more detailed email update, check out the templates here: Email templates.

More templates here: How to run a product team.

If you are sending a general update, additional things to keep in mind:

  1. Ask yourself: Who is the stakeholder you are sending this for? The update for your CEO will look very different from someone you send to your team.
  2. Think if someone might have an issue with the points mentioned in the update or would want to add/edit the update. If yes, then follow internal then external.
    • Before sending an OKR update on behalf of your team, create a temporary slack channel and give people access for edit.
    • Sometimes it is helpful to send a DM first to relevant stakeholders, collect feedback, before sending out an update to a larger group.
  3. Don’t use abbreviations/words that people might not be aware of.
  4. Ask yourself: Is there a way this message can be misinterpreted?
  5. Anticipate the follow up questions that people might have.
  6. Make the call to action clear.
  7. Simplify.
  8. Information architecture is not relevant only for design, but also messages. Use proper IA.
  9. Follow pyramid structure.
  10. Put your answer at the top. Most busy stakeholders will just read the first paragraph and then skim the message.

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