Category: Blog

April Release Notes

The Customer.io team kicked off April with a spring retreat in Playa del Carmen where team members created a few impromptu hack projects, including a Google Sheets Importer! That’s what you get when a team of engineers is together in a room.

New Features

Campaigns & Broadcasts

We’ve made three changes that will make creating campaigns clearer, but maintain the flexibility you love with our messaging workflows. You’ll now be able to:

  • Tell us how your campaign should trigger, rather than have to choose between complex campaign types
  • Create a re-enterable campaign: Set how much time must pass before someone can trigger the campaign again
  • Create a recurring campaign: People will automatically repeat the campaign at fixed intervals

Triggers are now responsible for one thing only: determining when someone enters a campaign. Even better, regardless of the trigger, you are now able to specify whether the user enters the campaign one time ever, or if they can enter many times. This also allows you to easily set up recurring campaigns that re-trigger at set intervals.

PSA: We moved API triggered broadcasts into a new “Broadcasts” category along with newsletters in the left side navigation. We also renamed “Triggered” to “Campaigns.”

Google Sheets Importer

The addition of the CSV uploader last year made it possible to update existing people without needing to ping your engineering team. Knowing that many of you use Google Sheets, we now provide the option to import people using a Google Sheet as well. We hope this simplifies your process when you need to make manual changes to your data.

Google sheets importer in Customer.io

Smaller Improvements

  • Added Dutch and Italian translations for unsubscribe pages.
  • Added an “overdue account” alert to your Account Admin’s dashboard and subscription settings page after a second failed payment attempt.

Action Conditions Based on Event Data

For campaigns that are triggered by an event, you now have the option to determine whether or not to send messages or enter delays based on attributes in the event’s payload. This new action condition can be found next to attribute and segment conditions in each workflow item.

Action conditions based on event data in Customer.io

Drag-and-Drop Editor

You now have the option to hide content on desktop when an email is opened. This allows a lot more flexibility to make layouts look great on any device they’re viewed on.

Haven’t used this feature before? When a specific content block is selected, you can find the settings on the content tab under block options.

Drag-and-drop editor block options

People Search

Do you often forget to include the “@” when searching for domains in people search? Yeah, us too. We came up with a solution that we hope will simplify that process without you having to remember to include the “@.” When you start to type a domain, a drop down will appear asking if you’d like to search for a domain starting with “@domainname.com.”

People Search in Customer.io

What’s Next?

Get excited for some changes coming in May, including the design refresh we’ve previously mentioned.

In the meantime, stay updated with the latest releases and improvements by following Customer.io on Twitter. Questions? Comments? Send them over to win@customer.io.

Want to join our amazing team of contributors? Check out our careers page to see open positions and learn why you’ll love working with us.

Create Campaigns with Confidence

You’ve told us that you love the flexibility of our messaging workflows. Anything you dream up, you can make happen in Customer.io. But, you have to understand some pretty complex concepts to make them a reality. With the latest changes, we’ve made the power of Customer.io campaigns easier to understand and set up.

We’ve made three changes that we think will make building campaigns clearer. You’ll now be able to:

  • Tell us how your campaign should trigger, rather than have to choose between complex campaign types
  • Create a re-enterable campaign: Set how much time must pass before they can trigger the campaign again
  • Create a recurring campaign: People will automatically repeat the campaign at fixed intervals

One Campaign Type, Multiple Trigger Types

Triggers are now responsible for one thing only: determining when someone enters a campaign. We removed the concept of campaign types, so triggers and frequency settings are no longer tied so closely together. Instead, these distinct campaign behaviors are available to you to use as building blocks for the perfect campaign.

Need an event to trigger the campaign, but only want the user to receive the message once? No problem!

Need segment conditions to be true before someone can enter the campaign, but want it to repeat on set intervals? No problem!

Control Campaign Recurrence and Frequency

As we’ve learned more about your messaging strategies, we’ve found that allowing you to control how often someone enters the campaign means that you’re not looking for workarounds, but exercising your creativity in messaging. Regardless of the trigger, you are now able to specify whether the user enters the campaign one time ever, or if they can enter many times.

Segment Trigger Frequency Settings

Event Trigger Frequency Settings

Yes, you read that correctly. You can now allow users to enter a condition-triggered campaign more than once without writing into the support team!

Sometimes flexibility can be overwhelming in campaign creation. Don’t worry, by accepting the defaults, your campaigns will do the same things they’ve always done.

Create a Recurring Campaign

We’ve added a new frequency setting which allows you to easily set up recurring campaigns that re-trigger at set intervals.

Imagine a case where you would like to remind a user to log back into your app if they haven’t done so in 30 days. And maybe you’d like to remind them every week until they’ve done so. You can now set up a campaign that triggers when they enter the inactive - 30 days segment (1). Then, toggling the frequency setting to allow them to re-enter at set intervals, you can set the interval to re-trigger every 7 days (2). If they are still in the inactive - 30 days segment, they will receive the reminder again. If not, they will exit the campaign.

But What Happened to API Triggered Broadcasts?

We moved API triggered broadcasts into a new “Broadcasts” category along with newsletters.

API triggered broadcasts and newsletters address the same messaging strategy— target groups of people at once. Combining these two items into the more extensive broadcasts concept will allow us to expand the number of use-cases for messaging groups of people at specified times.

We’re excited about these improvements to the campaign set up and we think you will be too! Send us your thoughts and questions at win@customer.io or @customerio!

March Release Notes

March brought the first day of spring and lots of great feedback from you on how we can improve Customer.io. This month, we worked on some of those requests pertaining to newsletters and kicked off the first of many exciting changes coming to campaigns.

New Features

Per-User Data in API Triggered Broadcasts

We heard you when you said you wanted to make newsletters more personalized. API Triggered Broadcasts are great when you need to message one-to-many users, but now you have the capability of including custom data for each recipient—think voucher code or personalized product recommendations.

You previously either had to do a mass update of profiles or send us a ton of events to do a single broadcast where each person gets some custom bit of data. This can be a total pain when you’re trying to get all those recommendations updated in CIO and then send the broadcast. Now, you have the option to include a per_user_data attribute (for up to 10,000 recipients) or a data_file_url attribute in order to do this in one step.

Campaign Unsubscribe Setting

Have you wanted more flexibility and visibility with unsubscribed settings within your entire campaign? You now have the option to set a campaign default to “send messages to unsubscribed users” rather than having to change it for every action within your workflow.

Before this, Event Triggered campaigns defaulted to sending to unsubscribed and Segment Triggered did not. Now, neither campaign type defaults to send to unsubscribed.

Smaller Improvements

  • API Key Authentication is now available when using Custom SMTP via SendGrid. Switching to this is necessary when 2FA is enabled on the SendGrid account.
  • Included a “View in Delivery Log” link (on hover) in dashboard tabs to quickly see a filtered delivery log for each channel.
  • Exporting delivery data is now in a separate queue so it doesn’t block segment updating or other exports from processing.
  • Fixed a bug where UI filters weren’t working for viewing API Triggered Broadcast deliveries by status.

What’s Next?

In the coming weeks, you’ll start to see some major changes within the app including a design refresh and how campaigns are built.

In the meantime, stay updated with the latest releases and improvements by following Customer.io on Twitter. Questions? Comments? Send them over to win@customer.io.

Contributors: Brian, Kate, Ivana, Matt, Stephen, Waqas, Matthew, Adrian, Kevin, Richard, Kristina, Jatin

February Release Notes

February was a short month with record snowfalls, another Super Bowl win for the Patriots, and a Best Picture Oscar for Green Book. Now that spring is here, we’re excited to share the many improvements we’ve made for you in February.

Dashboard Improvements

We know that some of you send more than just email, so we want to provide a dashboard experience that better represents that. You can now see metrics for all channels in a single view. This includes email, SMS, push, slack, and webhooks.
In addition to measuring volume and performance, we’ve added two more chart types—undelivered and spammed.

Undelivered

The new Undelivered chart helps you understand how frequently Customer.io is unable to send messages. It shows the number of messages created and a stacked line graph visualizing the failed, bounced, and suppressed rates. Undelivered metrics are available for all channels.

Spammed

The new Spammed chart helps you understand your email spam rate over time relative to when you’re doing the highest volume of sending. It presents the number of messages sent with a vertical bar, overlaid by a line graph showing the spammed rate.
Viewing these metrics in your dashboard will help alert you to any potential issues such as spikes, and you can easily see if these types of messages are decreasing over time.

Event-Triggered Campaigns: Frequency

Say good-bye to unwanted emails within a short period of time. Our new addition Frequency allows you to limit the number of times a person can enter an event-triggered campaign.

Frequency Example: Abandoned Cart

You have an abandoned cart campaign that’s triggered by an event that is sent every time your customer adds an item to the cart. The workflow for a campaign triggered by that event waits 5 hours to see if the purchase was completed. If not, you send a nudge email. Rather than sending multiple times a day when the event occurs, you select the Frequency to only have it sent once per 24-hours.

Mobile Push Notification Improvements

Last Result for Devices

Want to know if a person’s devices are working correctly? The “Last Result” column will let you know if Customer.io was able to successfully reach each device.   

Understanding Delivery Failures

When a Push Notification to an iOS or Android device fails, we now make it easier to understand exactly what’s happening.
  • If a Push Notification fails because the token is unusable or has expired (generally due to an app being uninstalled) we will mark it as Bounced.
  • Future attempts to send to that device will be Suppressed until you’ve re-registered the token via the add device API.
  • If a Push Notification fails because no devices are present, we mark it Undeliverable.
These new statuses help you quickly distinguish when a failure is caused by your campaign configuration or is a result of your customer’s device status. The UI on both the Delivery Log and the Delivery Summary pages were improved to make these statuses easy to follow.

We reviewed every error message that the push providers send us and make sure to show you a message with an actionable next step any time you see a failure.

Smaller Improvements

  • If someone entered a campaign by mistake, you can now manually eject them from the active campaign. You’ll find a button on the person’s Journey page for the campaign you want to boot them from.
  • Is a customer complaining they didn’t get a message? We’ve added a “Resend” button for any previously sent email. This creates a brand new copy of the message and sends it again.
  • You are now able to access Journeys for deleted campaigns so you can understand how people experienced your old campaigns.
  • Added default segments to represent the groups of people who have or have not registered mobile devices for push notifications. Use these to help determine when you should send a push or an email.
  • Replaced the “Date” column with “Date Created” for Delivery Logs so it’s now clear when each item was created, and sorted by most recent.
  • Action Conditions UI is updated to make it clearer that they are checked before running the Action.
  • Increased the maximum URL length for reporting webhooks and improved the validation and error messages provided when we detect problems.
  • If you use Oracle DYN for Custom SMTP, your emails now correctly show Bounced and Spammed statuses.

What’s Next?

What you don’t see within these new releases are several exciting early-stage projects on our path toward building the most powerful automated messaging tool. Just wait until you see what we have in store for March!

In the meantime, stay updated with the latest releases and improvements by following Customer.io on Twitter. Questions? Comments? Send them over to win@customer.io.

P.S. Did you notice anything different this month? We have a new look! You’ll now see our new logo in the product with bigger UI changes in the coming months.

Contributors: Brian, Ivana, Matt, Stephen, Waqas, Matthew, Adrian, Kevin, Richard, Kristina, Jatin

January Release Notes

Building on our work from 2018, we started January with personal resolutions we knew we would break, but a commitment to you that we knew we would fulfill. This year we’ll continue to build the most powerful automated messaging tool on the market while reducing the time it takes you to create value in Customer.io.  
In January we did this by adding “Wait Until” to give you more flexibility in campaigns. We also improved working with segments by making it possible to drag-and-drop the conditions as well as giving you the ability to “archive” segments you’re not using. A hotly requested addition last month was bringing you visibility into your email “suppression list.” Rather than emailing us to help, you can now remove addresses that get blocked and suppressed from sending.

New Features

Wait Until

In a typical campaign, you might send a message and then add a time-based delay—usually a day or so. With our “Wait Until” action, people get paused in a campaign until they do something you define or time elapses—whichever comes first. You can wait for them to confirm their email address before proceeding. You can wait for them to download your app. You can wait for them to convert to a paid subscription.
Wait Until allows you to do more in a single campaign flow.

Drag-and-Drop Segments

You’ll never get stuck with a condition in the wrong spot again. You’ll never have to start creating from scratch when the order of things doesn’t tell the story you want.
Now, you can drag segment conditions to re-order them. You can drag them into a group, or out of a group. Anywhere conditions can go, you can now drag them there. We hope you’ll agree that this makes creating segments more forgiving and more fun.

Archive Segments

In order to stay organized and better manage your list of segments, you now have the ability to archive segments you are no longer using. For our customers with over 1000 segments, this one’s for you.

Newsletter Filters

We’ve heard from a lot of you that you often send newsletters to people who have (or haven’t) received a different newsletter. Previously you had to create a segment. We streamlined that process. Now when selecting recipients for a newsletter, you can choose to send it to people who have or haven’t received any of your other newsletters.

Smaller Improvements

Suppression List Management

Email Settings now has a new “Suppression List” tab. Here you’ll find emails that have been suppressed by our delivery provider for past bounces, blocked, invalid, or emails marked as spam. When needed, you can easily remove emails so they’ll no longer be suppressed.

HSTS Verification

We’ve added a new check that points out a common HTTPS error when configuring Link Tracking on a custom domain.

“Undeliverable” Status

When using the “Do Not Send” feature within workspaces, we’ll now mark attempted messages with an “Undeliverable” status. When testing new ideas or temporarily pausing messaging, the delivery log is much clearer.
We’ll see you next month! In the meantime, stay updated with the latest releases and improvements by following Customer.io on Twitter.
Questions? Comments? Send them over to win@customer.io.
Contributors: Brian, Ivana, Kate, Matt, Paul, Stephen, Ian, Waqas, Matthew, Adrian, Kevin, Swastik, Brandi, Livia, Richard, Madeline, Kristina, Zack, Joe, Jatin, Zaf, Tamjid

A New Look for Customer.io

In April 2013, we launched Customer.io’s logo you’re all familiar with. This logo has served the company well. Almost six years later, we decided it was time to reimagine Customer.io as our company and product have evolved. Starting today, you’ll see a new logo, color palette, and an updated website. Over the coming months, we’ll be refreshing the product to reflect our new look.

Inspiration

Our mission is to power automated communication that people like to receive. We wanted the logo to convey elation. Elation that we want you to have using our product, and elation when people receive the messages you send through Customer.io.

Why Create a New Logo?

When starting this project, we knew our logo and branding should remove our association with email, modernize our color palette (partly to make accessibility easier to achieve), and put more of an emphasis on people.
A company’s logo and branding should be aspirational. We wanted a makeover to show the world who we’re trying to be rather than who we were a few years ago.

Solution

The mark represents the customer with raised hands in victory. The raised arms mimic the “C” in Customer.io and suggest a smile.
The logotype is rounded to reflect the smile in the logo. We have a brighter color palette—we maintained our signature teal but switched our primary brand color to purple for better accessibility.
We are excited to start using this logo everywhere that you see Customer.io!
On social:
On stuff:
Tweet us and share your thoughts on our rebrand. We also have lots of stickers with our new logo, so DM us or email press@customer.io to get yours!
Partners, please visit our press page to download our new logo and brand guidelines.

Send Messages at the Perfect Time with Wait Until

Have you ever wanted users to wait in your campaign workflow until they take an action? Well, you now have that option with Wait Until.

What’s New?

Instead of creating multiple campaigns when you need to wait for a user action, Wait Until allows you to have a single campaign flow that captures all your logic.

Here are some workflows you can create with Wait Until:

  • Wait Until they’ve opened the previous email before sending the next one.
  • Wait Until the product has been delivered before prompting a product review.
  • Subscription canceled due to an expiring card. Wait until payment details are updated before sending a “welcome back” email.
In addition to a time delay, you can now Wait Until someone enters (or leaves) a segment before they continue through your workflow. When you deliver messages based on actions rather than time, you’ll increase your open rates and better serve your users by decreasing the number of messages you send.

Some benefits of using Wait Until to combine multiple campaigns:

  • You don’t have to stitch together metrics from multiple campaigns to understand what’s going on.
  • You get to see conversion metrics for the entire flow rather than piecing together each one individually.

Example: Email Confirmation

You have an onboarding campaign where you’d like to send an email confirmation and welcome email. Instead of creating two campaigns (one for each user event), you can keep the entire email confirmation flow in one place. This means that some users may wait for a few minutes before receiving the next message, some may wait days, while others may wait indefinitely if they do not confirm their email.
  1. Send email confirmation
  2. Wait until user confirms email
  3. Send welcome emai
See step-by-step documentation on how to create, delete, and copy Wait Until delays.

Have Feedback?

Help us improve Wait Until. Here are a few questions you can help us answer:
  • What do you love or wish we had done differently about this new feature?
  • What things do you wait for? We’d love to hear your stories!
As always, we’re here to listen if you have questions or need help by reaching out to win@customer.io! Stay updated with the latest releases and improvements by following Customer.io on Twitter.

How We Made Customer.io Better for You in 2018

More than 14,000 people from 1,100+ companies used Customer.io to send 5.5 billion messages in 2018. That’s 174 messages sent every second! This past year we focused on making major improvements within the messaging and data areas of the platform.

Better Messaging Across More Channels

In 2018 we set out to become an every channel solution. We focused on enabling you to connect with your users where they spend the most time and on the channels they prefer. To do this, we introduced a push solution for iOS and Android, improved our multi-channel features, and made improvements to how you compose messages with Customer.io.

  • Push Notifications. Although email is still the most used messaging channel by users, we added support for sending push notifications within your existing workflow. This allows you more opportunities to connect with your users through their preferred method.

  • Drag-and-Drop Editor. Before the Drag-and-Drop Editor, you’d have to know HTML/CSS to manually build layouts. You can still go that route if you want, or you can use the editor to create well-designed, mobile-friendly emails without writing a single line of code.

  • API Triggered Broadcasts. With one simple API call, you can now trigger campaigns to specific groups of people that are targeted using all your segmentation and profile data. This gives your application direct access to start campaigns, including the ability to pass in data that will be used in your messages.

  • Multi-channel A/B Testing. We took all of the A/B testing capabilities for email and made them possible for Push and SMS. Additionally, you can now view multi-channel metrics for your entire campaign, or break it out individually for email, push, or SMS.

More Control Over Your Data In and Out

In the past, the only way to get data into Customer.io was through our Javascript library, our API, or third party integrations like Segment. This year we worked to make getting your data in easier, as well as getting it out through our new API. In addition to accessing your data, we created a new view for you to easily get a full picture of all the types of data you’ve received.

  • CSV Uploader. With the CSV Uploader, you can easily import new users to your Customer.io account without needing any technical knowledge or pinging your engineering team. You can also use the uploader to update existing users by either adding, modifying, or deleting their attributes.

  • Manual Segments. You can now use Manual segments instead of (or alongside) Data-driven segments when you need more hands-on control setting campaign recipients or excluding specific groups of people.

  • New APIs. The API now allows you to programmatically retrieve data on your customers, campaigns, segments, and messages. There’s a lot of data inside of Customer.io—that belongs to you—so we wanted to make sure you have access to use in any way you want.

  • Data Index. The Data Index page is a new way to view a complete list of events and attributes that exist in your Customer.io workspace. This is a great way to see where all your data is used, understand your team’s naming conventions, and view sample values.

We’ll continue to release new features in 2019 to help you have the most successful year possible. Want to know what else Customer.io did in 2018 besides release these amazing new features? Check out our 2018 year in review to read all of our Company highlights including our new vision/mission/strategy work and design improvements rolling out this year.

Customer.io 2018 In Review

John and I started Customer.io in 2012 to prove that we could build a business to support the two of us. Six years and 42 people on the team later, we’re grateful each month when revenue increases that this amazing journey keeps going.

Customer Satisfaction

The team increased customer satisfaction achieving our highest rating to date of +48 in November.

December stands out as a regression that we’ll need to dig in to!

Volume of Messages

Our customers sent 5.5 billion messages with Customer.io across all message types (email, push notification, SMS, Slack, webhook action).

We want to help people send fewer, more meaningful messages but messages sent gives you some idea of usage.

Revenue

The year ended with the business at $700k in Monthly Recurring Revenue (MRR) or $8.4m in Annual Recurring Revenue. That’s an increase of 37% from December 2017.

Return to Profitability

We had several months towards the end of the year where we increased cash. Boy, that’s a much better feeling than burning. Our goal is to return to profitability in 2019.

Leadership Learnings

Key Initiatives

We did our version of OKRs called Key Initiatives every quarter in 2018 (a first for us!). Each quarter, we had between one and four Key Initiatives.

Here’s one:

While not perfect, setting formal Key Initiatives is better than the alternative of drifting aimlessly (we tried that too).

A System for Management

You need to pick where you want to innovate and how we manage people wasn’t one of them. This year I was excited to finally find something we could adopt and achieve good results.

The Manager Tools approach has worked really well for us with some modifications for distributed teams. I started exploring it after learning about it from Wade Foster of Zapier.

We now use the manager tools 1-on-1s and feedback model as a baseline for what people should expect from managers at Customer.io.

Mission / Vision / Strategy

We re-articulated our mission:

Power automated communication that people like to receive

People use Customer.io to automate and gain efficiency, but automation is usually cold and inhuman. There’s tension in our mission to make automation human and valued by the people on the receiving end of it.

We spent a lot of time trying to craft a clear vision to rally the team behind and are proud that ended up with:

Vision:

Create the single tool relationship businesses need to send targeted and automated messages to their audience

What’s a relationship business? Any company that values you beyond a single transaction. A typical gas station is probably not a relationship business, but your insurance provider is.

From our vision, we came up with a strategy we’re going to start executing against in 2019. That’s internal only for now.

Board Meetings

As part of the terms of our last financing round, we created a formal board and nominated an independent board member by the end of 2017. Initially, I approached board meetings as a place that I’d be scrutinized.

Someone gave me advice that the board is the place for you (if you’re the CEO) to bring the problems you want help solving. That mindset has helped me. I enjoy preparing and taking time to step back. We get a lot of value out of our quarterly board meetings.

Company Highlights

Premium + Customer Success + Deliverability

We added a premium plan that includes a Customer Success Manager, access to premium Technical Support, and SLAs.

We realized that larger organizations and companies that are growing quickly have more complex needs. By pairing customers up with someone really knowledgeable, we’re able to help them be more successful and provide a lot of value.

That split between basic and premium also means that people who don’t need SLAs, deliverability help, and dedicated IPs don’t pay for them.

Our Customer Success team now covers 98 premium customers.

Building Out a Partnerships Function

Partnerships is now a formal role within the company. We’ve had both technology vendors and agencies within our ecosystem for several years and wanted to make it easier for those partners to be successful with Customer.io.

We’re committed to the relationship: we provide a person to contact and material specifically for partners.

Experiments with Advertising

We spent $185,000 across Facebook, Twitter, Reddit and Linkedin. Paid ads helped us quickly figure out what keywords our audience is interested in. Starting broader and narrowing down was a better approach than starting narrow and broadening. Building a quick way to add new landing pages helped us deliver a tailored experience.

The net result was we doubled trial volume and have more confidence we can insert money to drive demand than we did before.

Calmer Engineering

Engineering was hectic at Customer.io every year before 2018. At the beginning of the year, we completed a migration from our legacy infrastructure to Google Cloud.

Architecturally, things got a lot simpler, which allows us to provide a higher quality of service. The new infrastructure is maintained by our Site Reliability Engineering team and is no longer the responsibility of the Backend Engineers.

Additionally, we added formal Quality Assurance and improved our deployment process. All of these changes mean our engineers can focus more on making the service better, rather than jumping from fire to fire.

How We Build the Product Improved

We implemented a version of Spotify’s Squad model and now have three squads working on improvements to Customer.io.

We tested working in squads by building native Push Notifications at the beginning of the year. We had a team of four (product, design, backend engineering, front-end engineering) focused on Push Notifications. They became subject matter experts, talked to customers, and shipped multiple iterations of that feature. Their work convinced us that organizing into squads would be great for the rest of our efforts.

To make squads work, we went from two to six people on Product by adding two Product Managers and two Product Designers.

Now it’s time to tackle some meaty product challenges!

Design Improvements – Rolling Out in 2019

Adding more designers to the team helped us address a lot of “design debt” in the company.

Creating a New Identity

We worked with Unfold to create a new identity for Customer.io. That work was finished in December; we’re now working to roll out an update across the company.

Design System & Style Guide

We began chipping away at standardizing our UI in the app, and our design principles.

I’m proud of the team’s decision to commit to accessibility. It’s wonderful to see people apply our values of empathy, transparency, and responsibility to any of our business decisions.

Another exciting thing is to see us reimagining Customer.io. We’re still in the early stages of exploration.

You should start to see some pretty great changes to our look and feel in 2019.

GDPR Compliance

Businesses should respect people and their data. Raising the bar is a good thing; we were happy to see the EU leading the charge. It was expensive to do the work needed to comply with the new GDPR requirements and remains to be seen if the EU will become more aggressive in enforcement. Either way, companies using Customer.io are able to comply.

Company Retreats in Chicago and Quebec City

The company got together twice this year—once in Chicago and once in Quebec City, Canada. With a bigger team, we’ve started doing small group dinners and make sure we have lots of planned events in addition to hack projects.

Highlights for me were cooking dinner with the team, curling, and the architecture in Chicago!

Expanding Our Team to Asia

Most distributed companies hire within a few time zones. When one of our engineers decided to move from Poland to Australia, we saw it as an opportunity to learn how to work together across time zones.

There are now four team members located in Asia: India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Australia. To me, building a great team means building a global team. Distance and time zones present real challenges that we’ll continue working to overcome. One thing we have learned is that neither of time nor distance prevents great people from doing highly impactful work.


I’m proud of the team’s accomplishments in 2018. We made a lot of progress improving how we work together. The core parts of the company are stronger to set us up for more success in 2019!

How Mailgun Increased Their Customer Onboard Rate by 30%

Mailgun sends billions of emails each month on behalf of their customers. Everything from transactional emails to marketing newsletters, while also providing other email deliverability solutions like Rapid Fire Throughput SLA and email validations.

Mailgun has grown substantially, and with that growth, it has become more and more critical they are able to easily communicate with their customers using automated messaging.

Mailgun depends on making sure they achieve the best possible deliverability for their customers by having a rock-solid backend. However, when it came to the need for a front-end solution that made it easy for their marketing team to create and send automated campaigns using their real-time data, they needed a partner for help.

Infrastructure — Being Genuine

This probably isn’t too shocking, but the Mailgun team prefers to use Mailgun when they’re sending out emails. They stand behind their product. So the team wanted to find a front-end partner that could work flawlessly with Mailgun.

They also wanted to make sure their own marketing team could adopt all the best practices they recommend to their customers. Their transactional emails had to be separated from their marketing emails with different subdomains in order to keep those reputations separate. Changes like these make a world of difference in sending, which they needed the ability to continue doing with their new front-end partner.

Integration Trouble

Mailgun’s biggest hurdle in finding a new front-end provider was data integration. Mailgun’s old provider couldn’t reliably tell them what their customers had or had not done with their Mailgun accounts, even though that data was available in other places.

What exactly does that mean? Instead of segmenting a list to target users on a specific action, they were emailing everyone even if that message didn’t apply to them. For example, a message that said “add your domain now” was being sent to people who already had added their domain.

Mailgun had all of this data at their fingertips in Segment and their data warehouse, but not where they really needed it—in their email marketing solution.

Solution — Customer.io checks all the boxes

As you can see, Mailgun had a lot of problems they needed to solve. They set out to find a solution that would work perfectly with Mailgun, solve their use case needs, and meet their standards for security. It wasn’t an easy task, and they vetted several providers before ultimately choosing Customer.io.

“Not only is the interface super easy to use, but it integrates with our data warehouse securely. All that data is now at our fingertips, so we can send relevant emails to the right people. Plus, we’re using our own Mailgun account for sending. The SMTP integration was quick and straightforward, and Customer.io’s security protocols met our standards — all good things.” – Nicole Jacobson, Marketing Director, Mailgun

Putting it to the test

How is Customer.io actually performing as the front-end solution for Mailgun’s marketing team? Well, in just one marketing email for their email validations product alone, Mailgun had an open rate of 69% and a 4% click-through rate by sending to a segment of 33,000 engaged customers. They’ve also seen a 30% increase in the number of new customers who have fully onboarded since switching to Customer.io for their welcome email sequence.

“Overall, migrating over to Customer.io was a great choice for us moving forward, and we’ve only gotten started.”– Nicole Jacobson, Marketing Director, Mailgun

Mailgun integrates seamlessly to Customer.io through SMTP and their team provides some of the best deliverability available. If you’re interested in learning more about Mailgun, feel free to contact them or sign up for a free account.