Category: Customers

How Notion Switched to Customer.io 8 Days Before Their Annual Renewal

Notion is an all-in-one workspace where you can write, plan, collaborate, and get organized. Notion strives to create a simple, beautiful, and easy-to-use product for their customers, which is one of the main reasons why they switched to Customer.io. They needed an automated marketing platform that matches their product: UI and support team that is intuitive, responsive, and fast.

It Started With a Tweet.

Notion’s Head of Growth, Jamie Quint, was frustrated with their current platform and went to Twitter for recommendations. After a conversation with our team, Jamie quickly learned that yes, we do support enterprise. Yes, you can use your own ESP. And yes, your event properties are first-class in our platform.

Winback For Due Diligence. 

Truth be told, Notion was previously a customer at the beginning of 2019 but decided to part ways for the same reason they have returned to us in 2020 – the UI and visual workflow builder. Listening to and acknowledging our customer’s feedback and their needs is a competitive advantage for us. 

We are continuously improving the platform to give our customers control and flexibility to craft and send data-driven emails, push notifications, and SMS messages. Plus, we now offer Professional Services to jump-start our customers for long-term success, which was one of the main selling points for Notion when considering the switch.

The Race Was Not Against the Competition, but With Time. 

Eight days. That’s how long Notion had before their annual contract renewed. Eight days to find and migrate to a new platform, or keep using their existing platform and stay unhappy and frustrated.

After an initial conversation and a demo to show off the platform, Notion was sold on the features, platform performance, and overall UI of Customer.io. But the challenge was migrating before their contract renewed.

Notion ultimately agreed to switch messaging platforms under one condition: our team had to fully migrate Notion’s messaging strategy before their renewal date. That’s where Professional Services came in.

It Was Go Time. 

The Services team dove headfirst into the work tackling Notion’s most effective and most complex campaign first. Recreating the multi-split branch campaign that had several twists and turns all in support of an organization experiencing astronomical growth.

Conscious of the imposed deadline and the fragility of data, a data migration was performed to ensure uninterrupted communication with Notion’s expansive user base during the transition. Validating the data sent to Customer.io, and verifying it aligned with the messaging strategy, gave Notion peace of mind. 

Without letting off the gas, our Engineering experts were helping out in parallel. Provisioning dedicated hardware (as part of Notion’s customized plan) to serve their substantial sending volume and anticipated growth. 

We promised to fully migrate Notion’s messaging strategy before their renewal date, and we did just that.

Signed, Sealed, and Delivered.

In less than eight days, Notion had parity with their old system. What’s more, they found quality-of-life improvements in a faster campaign building experience, segment build times, and an incredible UI. Jamie Quint gave high praise to the team and said “You guys did a great job for us.“

“The Pro Services team at Customer.io was critical in expediting our migration to their platform. They were communicative, experts in the platform, and incredibly efficient. Without their help and flexibility, we may have dropped important communications to our customers, and worse yet, been stuck on a platform that wasn’t working for us.”

Blending Customer.io’s powerful automated messaging platform and the value of Professional Services, the decision for Notion to switch to Customer.io was easy. 

How Timetastic Increased Their Free Trial Conversion Rate With Customer.io

Timetastic is the paperless way to track employee’s time off with an up-to-date record of absences, so you can plan better and work smarter. Every new company starts with a trial and then has the option to upgrade to a paid account. To increase more paid customers, Timetastic knew they had to create a better trial experience for their users. 

The Challenge: Converting Trials Users to Paying Customers

Timetastic set a goal to increase the conversion rate by improving their customer experience during sign up. Knowing the initial communication was a little hollow, they shifted their focus on establishing a relationship with their users and growing their paying customer base. They started by looking at their onboarding emails and the preexisting touchpoints with their business. 

During the trial period, account owners received an onboarding campaign that consisted of three emails:

  • A welcome email
  • An email describing how-to get support
  • A trial expiration email encouraging the user to add a credit card to continue using the service

So within a two-month timespan, trial users only received three emails from Timetastic! This was problematic because onboarding campaigns are a crucial part of the customer lifecycle. They show value, increase product adoption, and for a business model like Timetastic, they are critical to winning over trial users. 

After sending a one-off newsletter asking their customers for reviews (and receiving many positive responses!), Timetastic realized they don’t communicate enough with their customers. Their existing onboarding series, or lack thereof, was not creating the customer experience or providing the conversion rate results they wanted. They knew something had to change if they wanted to help users navigate through the onboarding process. 

The Solution: Designing A Thoughtful Onboarding Series

Starting from scratch, Timetastic wanted to introduce a new onboarding series that would help the account owner find value in the product and become a paying customer.

They analyzed their regular conversion flows and surveyed their customers to get a better understanding of their pain points and the steps they took towards that “Aha” moment

In the end, Timetastic increased the number of emails within the campaign from three to nine, and condensed the onboarding time frame from two months to one. By reducing the trial period, it effectively cut the duration between each email in half. As a result, they stayed more relevant and lowered the likelihood of being sidelined. 

The onboarding campaign also went from a generic welcome series to an informative email series. Redirecting the focus on the benefits of Timetastic’s booking planner, sharing case studies, and spotlighting features, Timetastic tailored their messages to help people get to grips with the product during that important first month and stayed top of mind. 

Old welcome email

New welcome email

As you can see, the newly designed welcome email emphasizes who Timetastic is and the people behind it. In addition to the personalization, CTA, and engagement link, the email builds rapport for people who may be looking for a tool like Timetastic.

The Results: Increase in Paying Customers

Since they launched in September 2019, Timetastic has sent tens of thousands of emails. The new onboarding series has proven to be successful nudging users towards that “Aha” moment sooner because they have seen a nearly 10% month-over-month uptick from trials to paid accounts.

While this number may seem small to some businesses, the additional signups have been exceptionally valuable for Timetastic. With their low churn rate and their users’ prolonged lifespan, more customers means exactly what you’d think – more revenue.

But this is still very much the beginning for Timetastic. They are continuing to look and refine their email structure and content to make the emails even more useful to their customers.

Up next, Timetastic plans to focus more on more brand engagement and creating an onboarding series for all new account users within a company. They want to help users learn the basics of Timetastic quickly. Let’s not forget people have busy lives these days, and the last thing they need is to be struggling with how to book a day off work.

How Purple Carrot Went from Updating Its Ad Audiences Every 90 Days to Every Hour

Purple Carrot is a 100% plant-based subscription meal service that delivers healthy meals right to your doorstep every week. Purple Carrot’s vision is to create a world where plant-based eating is a mainstream choice to improve health, the environment, and animal welfare.

Before Customer.io Ad Audience Sync

Digital advertising is primary growth strategy for Purple Carrot.

Purple Carrot’s in-house ad spend strategy relies heavily onGoogle AdWords and Facebook, managed by Alli Hobbs, Purple Carrot’s Marketing Manager. Their team runs prospecting and retargeting direct response campaigns. Alli and her team were preventing surfacing ads to current customers by relying on audiences built using Facebook and Google pixel data.

This left room for serious inaccuracies in their targeting.

By showing ads to customers that had subscribed prior to the platforms’ tracking windows, or weren’t captured by the pixel, they were providing a poor experience for the customer, but also an ineffective use of ad spend for Purple Carrot.

Purple Carrot went from updating its ad audiences every 90 days to every hour.

After Customer.io Ad Audience Sync

Alli and the Purple Carrot team started using the ad audience tool a few months ago by building out two customer groups: all active customers and all customers that have canceled.

Purple Carrot then used theslusion lists for their retargeting and prospecting campaigns.

“We were doing a version of this before but I can confidently say that this is much better. This tool is a much more robust and encompassing version…This really makes our ad spend more effective and efficient,” said Alli, “We were definitely spending money on customers that had already converted.”

Not only are these audiences more accurate, but now they are automatically kept up-to-date in real-time every hour. This allows Purple Carrot to save the time and headache of manually uploading lists and have confidence that their ad budget is being allocated to the most accurate and best possible audience.

Ready to See Ad Audience Sync in Action? Request a Demo

How Mailgun Uses Customer.io’s Audience Sync to Focus Their Efforts on What Matters

Mailgun is an industry-leading email service provider (ESP) with a developer centric focus and product offering. Founded in 2010, Mailgun uses the power of its email API combined with its deliverability services to ensure their customers are getting the highest rates of deliverability in the industry.

Challenges with Ads

Historically, paid ads through Google have been the main focus of Mailgun’s paid media strategy, with two goals:

  • Driving signups for their core email API product
  • Driving leads for their deliverability services

Mailgun’s target buyer persona tends to be software developers.

“This crowd is very in-touch with the tech community and a traditionally tough group to market to,” Nick Lafferty, Mailgun’s Paid Search Manager, explained. “You’ll see competitors in our space getting trolled on Reddit and other places where devs hang out for their marketing tactics –– we have to be careful not to be that company.”

This makes it increasingly important for Mailgun to run authentic paid Google ad campaigns that speak to real problems their users are having. While Mailgun’s marketing team already had the ability to segment their specific audiences, the entire process getting these segments into Google Ads as a customer match audience was still entirely manual.

This meant manually uploading segmented lists as CSVs and pairing with the right messaging every day. The uploading alone takes away valuable time and effort that could be spent towards more meaningful tasks, like evaluating the performance of different campaigns or identifying new segments.

Mailgun reduced their time spent managing paid ad campaigns by 50%.

A New Focus with Customer.io

Nick is a newer member of Mailgun’s team and part of the refreshed focus and initiative into Maillgun’s paid media strategy. Additional spend, channels, and segmentation have all been a core focus, with the idea of building the Mailgun brand in the minds of its customers and driving conversions and leads for their sales team.

With these refined initiatives, Nick and his team were looking for a tool that could help them streamline their processes and provide opportunities to improve their already successful campaigns.

Utilizing Customer.io’s Segmentation and Ad Audience Sync, Mailgun has been able to refine its audiences to stay true to that authentic voice they want to maintain by creating messaging they know will resonate to that particular audience.

Before, Mailgun was having to manually organize, segment, and upload audiences via CSV files, their process is much more streamlined with the ability to have this done automatically, and they’ve even been able to create new segments because they know the current ones are always accurate.

“Customer.io’s Ad Audience tool has been an amazing way to keep all of my core audiences automatically up to date. I used to upload customer lists manually which was a huge pain and lead to gaps in ideal targeting” says Nick.

The Mailgun team is targeting current, active customers, sales hit-lists of high value prospects, and cross-sell opportunities. Since Customer.io updates these audiences hourly, Mailgun never has to worry about the wrong persona getting served the wrong ad.

“It really shines as a ‘set it and forget it’ tool, so I never have to worry if my audiences are up-to-date and I can focus instead on running the best possible marketing campaigns to those users.”

Spending Time on What Matters

So much of running a successful ads program has to do with being able to spend your time effectively and efficiently.

“That’s exactly what this tool lets me do,” said Nick. “The ad audience tool lets me get past the tedious and boring stuff and lets me spend my mental capacity on creating awesome copy, visuals, and ads––with a strategy I know will resonate. That’s what it’s all about”.

Ready to See Ad Audience Sync in Action? Request a Demo

How Codecademy Increased Their Ad Conversion Rate by 30% Using Customer.io’s Ad Audiences

Codecademy is an online-only interactive learning platform that teaches users the technical skills that they need to upgrade their careers. Founded in 2011, Codecademy has been one of the leading companies facilitating the learning of code and teaching code online. Codecademy has over 45million customers that they need to message on a daily basis.

Paid Media for Codecademy: A New Frontier

Paid media is a newer focus in Codecademy’s growth strategy. The eight-year-old company has traditionally relied on, and seen growth, from word of mouth by touting their free coding classes.

As they have grown and learned about the needs and requirements of their customers, they have shifted to a paid product that delivers more value to the user. Through this process they have found a need to run paid advertising to gain the attention of potential new users.

Initially, the Codecademy team focused their paid strategy on retargeting and brand strategy with the idea of getting people who are already familiar with Codecademy to sign up.

More recently, the Codecademy team has begun focusing on new acquisition and trying to gain the attention of people who don’t know Codecademy exists, but have a need or a desire to learn how to code.

“We see a lot of value in going after people who have never visited our site or heard of Codecademy” said Kunal Arya, who leads Codecademy’s paid marketing efforts. “We want to say, forget the bootcamps!––come to Codecademy and learn how to code.”

Before and After Customer.io Audience Sync

Before Codecademy was utilizing the Customer.io Audience Sync tool, they were serving the same ads to their whole audience––a giant list of millions of customers.

This strategy caused issues like inefficient spend. Either the messaging is too generic and doesn’t appeal to anyone, or it’s specific but being served to the wrong audience. Both can leave your dollars being spent in the wrong way and leads to a lot of frustration internally.

Once the Codecademy team started using the Customer.io Ad Audience tool, they were able to split this one campaign into three different campaigns in Google ads. These campaigns include free users, site visitors, and net new (or people who have never heard of Codecademy).

Each of these segments have very different and particular motivations and goals. It’s extremely important to tailor your ads’ copy, visuals, and placement specifically to the audience you are trying to reach, or your efforts are essentially null and void.

Once Codecademy had determined the components of their new campaigns, they needed a way to easily and effectively put that messaging in front of the right people.

Codecademy increased their ad conversion rate by 30%.

With the Customer.io Ad Audience tool, Codecademy is now able to automatically segment their audiences based on their campaign, ads, and messaging. This allows them to not only have the right ads in the right place, but to also know they are being updated and are accurate on an hourly basis–– when you’re dealing with list sizes of millions of people.

Now, as they are continually evaluating and improving their campaigns, their audiences remain updated without having to manually review, organize, and re-upload the segmented lists.

The Results

After implementing this new campaign strategy utilizing Customer.io’s Ad Audience sync, Codecademy was able to achieve a 30% increase in the amount of conversions from ads served to customers. That’s no small feat!

“The biggest change we’ve made is our audience segmentation. We’re now seeing which audiences are performing well and increasing budgets accordingly, and decreasing spend where we haven’t seen as much success,” said Kunal. “It’s allowed us to spend more strategically and efficiently.”

Ready to See Ad Audience Sync in Action? Request a Demo

How Livestorm closes the marketing automation loop with Customer.io

Livestorm makes it easy for companies to host better webinars. Hundreds of companies trust their service to power live sessions for tens of thousands of viewers each month—and their high customer ratings drive ongoing growth.

The challenge: scaling up with a small team

All those successful webinar streams are even more impressive when you see the size of Livestorm’s team: only ten hard-working people. “With just ten team members, we couldn’t do all it on our own,” says growth engineer Thibaut Davoult. “So we love using Customer.io for our customer relationships.”

Co-founder and CEO Gilles Bertaux adds, “As we grew, we needed to scale. We always try to really personalize our messages, but we also need to give the same level of onboarding, support, and service to every customer—without having to hire someone else.”

The solution: using Customer.io webhooks to close the marketing loop

“We’ve all had to try other emailing automation systems,” says Thibaut, “and Customer.io always wins in our discussion as to who’s best.” This is because Customer.io is about more than just sending email for the team. “Customer.io helps us a lot with email and onboarding,” says Gilles, “but the webhook action has become one of the top features that we use.”

Gilles explains how Customer.io has become so central to Livestorm’s marketing stack: “As soon as someone creates some kind of bond with Livestorm—a new account, a trial, or anything—their data goes into Customer.io. Then the whole lifecycle is taken care of from Customer.io automatically.”

Reflecting this lifecycle-first approach, Livestorm’s marketing tech stack is made up of a wide variety of tools—including Zapier, Pipedrive, Satismeter, Chartmogul, HelpScout, and productboard—not all of which easily integrate with each other. But Customer.io brings it all together. “The Customer.io webhook is a way for us to keep data unified across all our tools, even ones that don’t integrate with Segment,” Gilles says.

“In my previous experience, unifying data was a real pain,” says Gilles. “Now, Customer.io is really at the center of everything. It’s more than just an email tool—it’s marketing automation that closes the loop among all tools.”

Customer.io webhook action

NPS data from Satismeter now in Customer.io sent to Zapier

And this setup reduces friction as Livestorm expands. “It’s quick and painless to get new marketers up to speed with how Customer.io works, even if they don’t know much about adding logic to emailing or about HTML/CSS,” says Thibaut. “And it is much more efficient in the long run than to rely on strictly WYSIWIG solutions. It makes our lives so much easier!”

“The Customer.io webhook is a way for us to keep data unified across all our tools.”

The strategy: creating meaningful experiences and rewarding loyalty

That seamless integration of data and tools helps Livestorm deliver on their key marketing strategy: dynamic personalization that creates a meaningful relationship with every customer. “Now that we have hundreds of customers with really different backgrounds, we need to be specific in our messages,” Gilles notes.

One way they achieve that is by creating lots of specific attributes in Customer.io and leveraging them to send relevant messages, including personal touches like birthday greetings. This approach also helps Livestorm segment their users for more relevant messages.

Gilles gives an example of what they’ll say to someone who fits their ideal customer profile. “We can identify a customer that’s, say, a SaaS with between 50 and 250 employees, and send content that will actually speak to them — for example, an article on how to scale sales demos for SaaS. Also, if the person is a founder or the CEO, we’ll have a different approach specific to that role.”

Customer.io Slack action

Using Customer.io’s Slack action for an internal team notification

Rewarding loyalty is another key aspect of Livestorm’s customer experience strategy. “Each time they reach some kind of milestone—let’s say a thousand attendees or a thousand webinars—we send them a message and some goodie,” Gilles says. “It feels really cool to give customers a personal, meaningful interaction when they reach a milestone.

“I see Customer.io as a role model of what an email software should be.”

The success: converting 3.5% users within 12 days

Your first webinar on Livestorm is free, which means the trial has no defined end date and Livestorm still have to convince you to upgrade to a paid plan. That’s where lifecycle messages come into usher new users along and provide the support they need. Livestorm’s approach pays off in high customer engagement. Customers consistently thank Livestorm for their great onboarding and relevant content.

“Half that success is thanks to Customer.io being a tool that enables us to have that level of relevancy,” Gilles says. And the relevancy of their messaging translates into high conversion rates. An average of 3.5% (and 4% in France) of users convert from trial to paid subscriptions within the two-week window of the onboarding campaign sequence.

Customer.io Slack action

Upgrade campaign triggered to first-time webinar users

Livestorm looks to Customer.io as a crucial tool for building on that success. “I see Customer.io as a role model of what an email software should be,” says Gilles. “Having something that’s really simple and really powerful at the same time—that’s well-thought-out in terms of segmentation, templating, and workflow—is really cool, and I haven’t found it elsewhere.”

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Explore how Customer.io can provide seamless integration for top-notch messaging strategies.

How Hey Jude tripled their trial-to-paid conversions with Customer.io

Hey Jude saves people time and money with a 24/7 virtual assistant service that can take care of pretty much anything. Scoring a table, booking a trip, nabbing concert tickets, getting the perfect last-minute gift — Hey Jude makes it easy to get anything you need, anytime.

That kind of promise relies on personalized service and adaptability. So naturally, Hey Jude turned to Customer.io to make their messages as attuned to customer needs as their service.

Going beyond onboarding for higher conversions

Hey Jude originally implemented Customer.io just to handle basic onboarding: a welcome email and a message after users submit their first request.

But the company quickly realized that Customer.io could be much more powerful. “Our use of Customer.io morphed into actually trying to influence user behavior,” says Marcus Smith, Hey Jude’s Director & Innovation Architect.

“Our conversion rate from free trial to paying member was 6% before using Customer.io, and now it’s around 22%.”

Behavioral messaging helps them nudge customers along free trial user to paid subscriber. Marcus explains: “This is what I quite like about Customer.io. If someone submits their first task and doesn’t submit another task, we automatically fire off an email to say, ‘Hey, did you know you could do x, y, zed,’ or ‘Why don’t you load your card and do a transaction through us and see how beneficial that is to your life?’”

This helps customers get genuine value from the app and motivates them to convert to paying subscribers. “When they use our app to make a transaction, they really get the wow factor and see how the service saves them time.”

Trigger an email

Hey Jude triggers an email to remind users of their remaining free tasks.

This targeted behavioral messaging approach has driven terrific results. “Using Customer.io has been awesome in helping conversions,” says Marcus. “Our conversion rate from free trial to paying member was 6% before using Customer.io, and now it’s around 22%.”

From easy implementation to ongoing improvements

Easy implementation was key in getting great results fast, as the team at Hey Jude didn’t have a lot of experience with behavioral data before they started using Customer.io. “The API was just incredibly easy. I think it took us half a day to set up, max,” says Marcus. “So we could quickly start pushing information up, and it was a piece of cake to start using it.”

By using Customer.io’s webhook action, Hey Jude also triggers push notifications. “It’s important that Customer.io is more than just an email system,” Marcus comments.

“The API was just incredibly easy. I think it took us half a day to set up, max.”

The power of segmentation in Customer.io gives Hey Jude lots of ways to improve. “The way we communicate through Customer.io is really good, so we’re going to expand it even more,” Marcus notes. “We’re planning to do some propensity modeling and machine learning to put people into certain segments and communicate in different ways based on that—we’re about to set up a heck of a lot more workflows!”

And because Customer.io provides rich analytics, Hey Jude can build on their success with ongoing improvements based on solid data. “We get reasonably good email open rates, but we want higher click-throughs,”’ says Marcus. “So we can actually analyze why we’re not getting conversions and have now started doing A/B testing on our campaigns.”

Driving better customer support with internal communications

Customer.io also serves as a customer intelligence tool to keep your team in the know and responsive to customer needs. “We use it as an internal tool too, which has been incredibly helpful,” says Marcus. Hey Jude asks customers to rate their satisfaction after each task, and Customer.io sends an alert to the team if a customer isn’t happy.

“If a task gets one or two stars, Customer.io fires off a Slack message to the team so our staff can call the client within minutes,” Marcus explains. “So aside from the customer tool, it’s actually great for us because we can fire off triggered campaigns internally, based on user behavior in the system that we might otherwise miss.”

Follow up email

When customer rates a task poorly, Hey Jude sends a follow-up email plus alerts the internal team via Slack notification.

Using Customer.io to support internal customer service needs is a clever way to get even more value from the tool, and another great example of how Hey Jude responds to customer behavior with targeted communication that drives conversion and retention. With their behavioral messaging strategy and the power of Customer.io, it’s no wonder Hey Jude’s free-to-paid conversions are soaring.

How StuDocu’s switch to Customer.io helped them reach 40% open rates

How do you manage to send highly personalized, relevant messages that get results to a vast user base that spans multiple time zones and languages around the globe? This was the challenge plaguing StuDocu when they went searching for a better messaging tool to replace one that just couldn’t keep up with their business’s demands—and they found the solution in Customer.io.

StuDocu helps hundreds of thousands of students around the world share their study materials—study guides, notes, assignments, and exam prep—and find relevant documents uploaded by other students. Effectively messaging to such a broad user base requires a clear vision for personalized, triggered emails and a powerful tool to deliver on that vision.

Why a personalized, triggered email experience makes all the difference

“When you are dealing with many languages and rules and segments and missions,” says co-founder Marnix Broer, “you need every email to be correct—you can’t send the wrong emails or the wrong languages, or you’ll lose your customer.”

This attention to the needs of their users has helped StuDocu develop an incredibly effective messaging strategy based on triggered emails that are highly relevant to the user. For example, Marnix notes, “People using our product respond very well to positive reinforcement. So we want to tell them when one of their documents is being appreciated by someone else. When we can send a message like that, the engagement is insane—open rates around 70%, and even click rates of 25%.”

“When you are dealing with many languages and rules and segments and missions,” says co-founder Marnix Broer, “you need every email to be correct—you can’t send the wrong emails or the wrong languages, or you’ll lose your customer.”

Powerful email strategy requires a flexible tool

StuDocu certainly has the right approach to email marketing, but their old platform just couldn’t support their strategy effectively. Marnix called out,”the amount and types of data we could export was so limited, it made our work impossible. So we had to duct tape a lot of stuff to even get the data we needed to see how our campaigns were doing.”

“That was the moment when we started looking for a different solution, when we realized we just could not use the properties we needed to send a good message.”

But the biggest downside to using their previous email provider was the lack of ability to leverage specific user properties and actions to send behavioral messages. “That was the moment when we started looking for a different solution,” says Marnix, “when we realized we just could not use the properties we needed to send a good message. What makes an email to our customer interesting is not the fact that they can view a document, but which document—that is what makes sense for our emails.” Without that level of detail in applying customer attributes, Marnix notes, “you can only send standardized emails, which makes no sense at all for us.”

StuDocu required access to specific data on every action taken by their customers

Not every platform allows access to specific event attributes, or event data, for use in campaign messages and segmentation. StuDocu relies on Customer.io to do just that!

And to top it off, StuDocu’s previous provider stopped making sense for one simple reason, according to Marnix: “They just became way more expensive over time.”

How StuDocu uses Customer.io to get great engagement

With Customer.io, StuDocu has found a tool that helps them send powerful messages that support their personalized strategy and boost engagement. “We use Customer.io to send emails to new users after they’ve visited us, and then we can retrieve data to learn more about them,” says Marnix. This drives their retention-messaging strategy. “Based on user behavior,” says Marnix, “we send emails related to what a user does on the website. And then we can even send gamification emails that increase engagement even more.” One example is that if someone upvotes a document you’ve uploaded, you get an email letting you know, and it takes you to the profile of the person who upvoted you or even to the upvote review itself, further engaging the user with the platform.

StuDocu's workflow includes an a/b test to improve engagement with emails alerting customers of upvotes on their content

StuDocu’s workflow includes an a/b test to improve engagement with emails alerting customers of upvotes on their content.

One clever example of how StuDocu uses Customer.io: sending messages that trigger customer behavior that benefits the user and solves a business challenge for the company at the same time. “A problem we had was that a user would upload single documents one at a time, “says Marnix, “which takes a lot more time and effort for us to process. We would much rather have them upload 100 documents at the same time.” So to encourage that desired behavior at a time when users would be receptive to it, StuDocu created a triggered campaign. “Once a user has sold one document, we send them a code that lets them get 30% more value for the next set of documents, but they can only use it once,” says Marnix. “This motivates people to upload 100 documents at a time, which is what we want—and this has worked very well and saved us a lot of time.” It’s an ideal example of how triggering messages based on user behavior can be used to motivate more user behavior that benefits both customer and company.

StuDocu’s strategy, combined with Customer.io’s power to help them execute it well, is really paying off with impressive engagement rates. “Our average open rate is around 40%, and our average click rate is well above 7%, even including transactional emails, which tend to be clicked way less,” says Marnix. “So that’s pretty high, and we’re very happy about it.”

“I never run into situations where I think something isn’t possible to do with Customer.io, I can always adjust everything just the way I want it, and what I want to do is always possible.”

When you have flexibility, the future is full of possibilities

“While implementing campaigns, I keep discovering new features in Customer.io,” says Marnix. “I keep going hey, wait, if this is possible, then I can also do this, and this…it goes on and on. So we keep improving our email cycles.” Having a messaging tool that can keep up with their business needs and strategy has opened the door for StuDocu to innovate to their heart’s content. “I never run into situations where I think something isn’t possible to do with Customer.io,” says Marnix. “I can always adjust everything just the way I want it, and what I want to do is always possible.”

That’s the power of implementing a smart, personalized messaging strategy with a tool that truly supports behavioral triggered campaigns—the possibilities are endless.

How Arcadia Power uses great email to power the clean energy movement

Arcadia Power knows their customers want to make choices that support their values — so they give their customers the power to choose 100% clean energy for their homes and make a difference in the world. Through Arcadia, you can purchase energy from wind or solar instead of coal, regardless of your utility provider or location in the US.

Arcadia Power has a strong engineering team, so when it was time to choose an email service provider (ESP), they first thought about building one themselves. But as experts in efficiency and smart choices, they knew a great solution would lighten the burden on their team — and they found one in Customer.io.

Better performance, testing, and segmentation

“Email is our primary way of acquiring customers,” notes Dalton Vogler, Digital Marketing Manager. That’s why it was crucial to carefully weighed their options in order to choose the right ESP. “We were looking at MailChimp, Constant Contact, Campaign Monitor, Emma,” says Dalton, “but they all seemed lacking in one way or another.” In the end, they found that Customer.io came out strongest. “A lot of performance features are just great in Customer.io,” Dalton notes. “It’s easily the best ESP I’ve ever used.”

“Really, it just works,” adds Justin Searles, Senior Fullstack Engineer. “We send thousands of requests a day through Customer.io to update different attributes, and it’s always worked. We love it.”

“We send thousands of requests a day through Customer.io to update different attributes, and it’s always worked. We love it.”

One key Customer.io feature that Arcadia Power relies on is the ability to test emails thoroughly. Dalton points out that “Customer.io lets you send test emails like every other ESP, but it’s one of the few that lets you put live data into your test email so you can see that all your Liquid tags are working.”

Another benefit of Customer.io that Arcadia Power relies on is the robust segmentation builder that makes personalized emails possible. “The segmentation is amazing and has been incredibly helpful for pinpointing all the nuances that we need for the company to function and send the correct emails,” says Dalton. “Customer.io lets us set much better drip parameters.”

“Around 34% of all the customers we’ve acquired since starting Customer.io have come from either drip or newsletter emails. That’s been our primary value with Customer.io.”

This has translated into efficient and effective customer acquisition. “Whatever we’re paying for Customer.io cost per acquisition is nothing compared to Facebook advertising, AdWords, and that sort of thing,” says Dalton. “Around 34% of all the customers we’ve acquired since starting Customer.io have come from either drip or newsletter emails. That’s been our primary value with Customer.io.”

Easy implementation makes the build vs. buy decision a no-brainer

From the engineering side, Arcadia Power knew that buying a solution made more sense than building one — as long as implementation was easy. With Customer.io, they found what they needed. “We had all the guidance we needed,” notes Justin. “The support docs were great.”

Implementing Customer.io lifted the burden from engineering. “From a dev standpoint, getting stuff over to Customer.io is really straightforward,” says Justin. “For example, I wrote a script to push all the new IDs up, and that was pretty straightforward, especially given the Ruby Gem. That was total, maybe 15 lines of code for everything. It was awesome.”

Sending data to Customer.io using Ruby is easy
Sending data to Customer.io with Ruby (and other languages ) is easy. Identify calls send in information about a customer, and Track calls tell us what those users are doing in your app.

The combination of great performance, business-boosting features, and easy implementation has made Customer.io a key tool in Arcadia Power’s arsenal of powering business growth.

How Customer.io helped TripScout master triggered personalized outreach at scale

When you’re traveling in a new place, you want an awesome guide to make sure you have a great time. That’s what TripScout promises its customers. The city-tour app curates a customizable trip full of interesting sites, engaging commentary, and useful directions. As a start-up, they’re constantly working to improve and expand their product. And in the meantime, they know that the one thing they can’t skimp on is service. For co-founder Andy Acs, that means ensuring their communications are always personalized and relevant—and doing so at scale.

The behavioral functionality of Customer.io means they can provide targeted, timely service, even on a start-up shoestring. As Andy says, “We’re always improving, so while our content and product aren’t always perfect, our service can be. So we use Customer.io to personally reach out to our users while they’re on a trip. They get this series of personalized emails from me; they have my actual phone number. And people get a feeling of real connection and appreciation from that.”

tripscout founder gives up his personal phone number

Acs gives up his personal phone number when Customer.io identifies that a customer is traveling. Even during our interview he offered a call to anyone who wanted to discuss his strategy.

Keeping it real while scaling up

“We’ve gotten a good following by having great service that’s really personal,” says Andy. And that sense of authenticity is key in creating satisfied customers. “We get high engagement with those emails,” he notes, “and we need to keep that going as we keep getting bigger.” That’s where Customer.io comes in. The ability to trigger emails based on a customer’s actions means TripScout can reach out with a targeted message at the exact right time for every user, and the automation makes it easy at any scale.

TripScout has seen first-hand how the right kind of email can make a difference. As Andy notes, “We’ve sent 2.8 million emails, and I saw the power of those emails to drive business. But the reason those messages succeeded was because the content was high value.” Users extend trust when they give you their email address, and TripScout respects that trust by sending emails that people actually want to read. They use Customer.io to segment their messages and trigger them by customer behavior so that they know the emails they’re sending are valuable to the recipients.

tripscout relies on behavioral segmentation

Behavioral segments allow TripScout to send the most relevant messages to customers

Establishing trust creates high engagement

For TripScout, a key aspect of respecting that trust relationship is sending emails that offer something immediately valuable to users at every stage of the customer lifecycle, without it being about a sales push. “If someone downloads the app but doesn’t buy a city guide, we’ll send them a free promo code,” says Andy. “As soon as someone makes a purchase, we say thanks with a personal message.”

tripscout offers free guide

Customers are rewarded with a free city guide just for downloading the app.

TripScout uses Customer.io to send messages that meet customers where they are—literally. When someone buys a city guide and starts using it, TripScout knows they’d appreciate additional city info. “When we see signs that someone is on a trip,” Andy explains, “we’ll send an email with personalized travel tips for that city. Those emails get very high engagement because they’re about what that person is doing right then, and they’re not trying to sell anything.” The metrics show the success of the approach: when they recently sent a personal-tips email for people traveling to Washington, DC, the open rate was 58%.

Building relationships with a changing customer base

Because they can use Customer.io to scale up messaging while staying very targeted and personal, TripScout is well-poised to meet a changing customer base. “For a long time, most of our traffic was through organic search. People came to us with strong intent to buy,” Andy says. “But now that we’ve gotten some press, we’re getting more people just casually checking us out. And we want to build a relationship with them.”

That’s where segment triggered campaigns through Customer.io come in. “We’re using email to help push that lever toward conversion with a multi-touch campaign,” Andy notes. Using Customer.io’s powerful segmentation and behavioral trigger functionalities, TripScout guides this new user base from “just curious” to serious buying intent. “We’re getting more sophisticated with our messaging,” says Andy, “and sending those communications is pretty easy with Customer.io.”

Extending the customer lifecycle with better email

Now that TripScout’s been around for a few years, they’re starting to put a serious eye toward retention. “Early on, we thought of our app as limited use. Someone might buy a city guide, use it one weekend, have the best time ever, and then be done with their trip,” says Andy. “But now we’re looking at how to re-activate people down the line when they might be ready to take another vacation.”

Using data from Customer,io, TripScout is building their re-activation strategy. “We occasionally send a newsletter with a postcard and some updates about TripScout, letting people know about all the new cities we’ve added,” Andy says. “The engagement on those is really great, so we know people are interested in getting more from the app.”

The power of behavioral messaging for ongoing growth

As TripScout keeps growing, they’re starting to look at more ways to reach customers with the right message at the right time, and to dive deeper into analytics to refine their approach. “We first found Customer.io because we were using Segment, and asked them for a recommendation,” says Andy, “and the integration was super easy.”

As they expand their messaging strategy, they’re looking forward to leveraging Customer.io’s multi-channel capabilities and doing even more with the tool. Andy says, “We’re happy with Customer.io. It’s simple. It works. It suits us well. We know it can scale up. We know it can be even more powerful for us.”

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