What We Learned From Growth Hacking Through Live Chat

Good customer support goes a long way. Most of us remember good experiences we’ve had with companies that offer great service for their customers. And most of us can probably also think of incidents where bad customer service left us feeling frustrated. In worst cases, it can actually hurt your business. So we can all agree that customer service can have a big impact on customer satisfaction when done right. But it doesn’t just benefit the customers, it can help you create a real relationship with your customers and provides you with feedback and ideas to help make your product even better.

At Mailjet, we’re always looking for new ways to support our customers and help resolve any issues they may run into. In particular, we want to make it easy for new Mailjet users to get started with their account and give them a chance to tell us what they like or don’t like about our service.

So about six months ago, we decided to test iAdvize’s live chat feature on our website to support our customer service efforts. Knowing that most of our customers that sign up for an account on our website are likely to send their first campaign right away. We wanted to give new customers an easy way to get in touch with us and get quick answers to questions that they might have right before or after signing up. By adding live chat at this part of the onboarding process, we saw an opportunity to support users and help them get started as fast as possible.

After six months of testing, we have gotten great feedback from our customers and learned a lot about how interacting with them in real time can add value to their experience. Primarily, we found live chat to be a great channel for answering quick questions and provide a solution in real time. While email support is good for questions that require investigation, live chat allowed us to interact with customers and help them right away. For example, we were able to help new customers send their first campaign while providing tips on how to make the most out of the send. It’s been a useful tool to get feedback and ideas from our users to better understand how we can improve our product further.

Based on our experience with the iAdvize chat client, we’ve put together a few of our learnings for you to keep in mind if you’re considering adding live chat to your customer service offering:

  1. Pinpoint your desired outcome

Think about what exactly you want to achieve with live chat support. What opportunities does it offer that your current support channels do not? How does it fit with the need of your customers? And how will it make the customer service experience better?

By considering these before going further, you’ll get a better idea of what it is you want to achieve and whether or not a live chat client is the right tool for you to do so.

  1. Test, test, test

When we first integrated the live chat feature on our site, we added it to all pages of our website. This meant that the number of users that were exposed to the chat client was high and the number of inquiries was high as well. Doing so helped us understand which questions users are typically asking and where in the onboarding process live chat would be most useful.

We then narrowed down the pages that triggered the chat client to focus only on the most critical pages. Knowing that certain pages related to the process of signing up, making a payment or creating the first campaign were where customers required the most support, these were the obvious pages to focus on.  We also took into account metrics such as time spent on a page inactively, which could indicate a customer unsure about what to do, error messages and number of pages visited.

  1. Ask for feedback and ideas

The obvious purpose of adding live chat to your support channels is, of course to be able to help your customers quicker. A perhaps less obvious but equally as valuable use is to ask your customers for feedback and learn from it. For example, once you’ve answered the questions of the customer and the support session is over, ask the user to rate how helpful the help way. Ask how likely they are to recommend your product to others and why or why not. Or ask for general feedback or ideas. Since your support team is in direct contact with customers, this a great opportunity for asking them for their opinion about your product.

  1. Be aware of time zones

If you’re operating globally and have customers in countries all over the world, you need to consider where and when to offer the live chat. Unless your support team is spread across different time zones, focus on a particular country or continent that is most important to your business.

With support teams on 3 different continents, we were able to provide live chat support in English and Spanish to customers in North America and Europe.

  1. Stay organized

Live chat is all about timing. Since you’ll be dealing with customers in real time, it’s important to be prepared and quick to respond to inquiries. Our target was to respond to the first question from a customer within 30 seconds and the second question within 45 seconds. This leaves little time to think and requires someone to be available to reply at all times. Make sure you have resources available and coordinate your efforts to make sure that customers actually get help whenever they ask for it.

 

Mailjet Monday: Arnaud Breton

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This week, we sat down to chat with Arnaud Breton, who is based in Paris and leads our Developer Evangelist team. Arnaud talks more about what it means to be a Developer/Developer Evangelist in 2015 and the culture behind a global team of 4.

1) What do you for Mailjet?

I lead an amazing team of 3 Developer Evangelists :).

Our main mission, as Developer Evangelists, is to build relationships with other developers in the space and in the process, introduce them to the Mailjet product and the email industry as a whole. These interactions happen both online and offline. We work with developers that are looking to build off of our API both at hackathons or on Github, StackOverFlow. More typically at events that we’re either sponsoring or speaking at, we provide developers with everything they need to get started (code wrappers, documentation). In the process, we also learn a lot from them – how they use Mailjet and new features they’d like to see.

The Mailjet team also dedicates time to do side projects and stay up-to-date with the latest trends in the industry, because, after all, everyone in the team is a developer at heart!

On the other side, I’m highly involved internally in the release process of the API, from its design/ specification to its release and communication.

At the end of the day, being a Developer Evangelist is a very exciting job. You are always working with a diverse range of subjects, mixing technologies, meeting new people and having fun (the most important factor, right?)!

2) What’s one thing everyone should know about email/APIs?

Today, email is a commodity, everyone has it, every system has support for it but yet, reaching the inbox is still a real challenge.

It’s mostly because the process of an email campaign – from creation to sending to landing in the recipients inbox, is a complex journey full of criteria that the sender has to meet in order to maintain a high sender reputation.

Using an API helps streamline this process – you have everything in hands to send, track and analyze, to integrate these emails deeper into the workflow of your software.

3) What does a typical day look like for you?

Our day starts with a short meeting between the European team (those based in London, Sofia and Paris). Since we have a fairly global team, this is dedicated time where we can check in, catch everyone up on what projects we’re working on, what’s next on the agenda and ask the team for help where we need. It’s a great culture to have in place, since it also gives us a moment to just say “how’re you doing?” and kick-off the day on a positive note!

Following that, I work with the European team to handle daily challenges. Then later in the afternoon, the day begins for Tyler, our Developer Evangelist in NYC (6 hours behind us in Paris). Him and I hold a similar check-in to kick-off his day.

Between these meetings, I’m juggling a variety of different subjects, from API specifications to helping developers online and discussing / preparing for coming events.

Managing a team across 3 time zones (and growing!) is a real advantage – it challenges you to manage your time efficiently and also increases your global footprint. Between the 4 of us, we’re pretty much able to connect with developers around the world 24/7!

4) Favorite Mailjet moment?

Every API release is an exciting moment for me, even if it’s a minor bug we patched up, it always feels great to be moving forward and providing our developer community with a product that is constantly improving, day after day.

Our daily morning meetings are also some of my favorite moments. It gives us a moment to take a small pause from hustling to check on everyone in the team and be sure everyone has what they need to move forward and tackle coming challenges!

5) Are you working on any neat projects of your own lately?

I live in Paris, and as you may know we experienced a violent terrorist attack back in January against the Charlie Hebdo satiric newspaper. To be honest, before this event, I don’t think I fully took the time to look into  the work they do, this event made me realize that I have missed out on an important piece of culture.

Which lead me to publish Dessine Moi Charlie (“Draw Me Charlie”), a simple app that helps you randomly discover Charlie Hebdo drawings. It’s my humble contribution to the massive movement (#jesuischarlie) in France.

In general, I like to work on small projects, with a main focus in mind, like learning about new technology – I had some fun playing with the Yo app and brainstorming new ideas a while back and am also a huge Go-lang fan, the gopher currently lives on my desk:

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6) What’s next for the Developer Evangelist team?

Having a global team is an amazing opportunity to connect with developers from all other the world.

We participate in an average of 3 bigger scale events across the globe each month, including conferences and hackathons. We are also highly involved in local meetups and initiatives (accelerators, incubators, etc). Every event is a unique occasion to chat with developers face to face and hear what they think of Mailjet, educate them on email trends and of course sharing our passion of programming.

As mentioned before, we’re constantly working on ways to improve our API and the suite of tools we publish for developers. In the coming months, you’ll see releases of new features that are simple, yet powerful, with a real focus on the Developer Experience (a concept which has really started to take off since APIs have been increasingly considered standalone products).

 

Heads Up: New Privacy Policy & Terms and Conditions Landing

Last year was a big year for us, we launched a slew of new features, a new sending policy and we grew to user base of over 150 countries. Now, we’re introducing our new Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy to continue improving your sending experience and to better compliment our growing international footprint.

We updated the consent and cookies policies with transparency in mind, so you can do more while keeping peace of mind. We will be giving current customers a 30-day period to familiarize themselves with the new policies before putting them into effect March 26, 2015. For new customers, both the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy will be effective immediately. Hop on over to familiarize yourself with the new terms. As always, we’re happy to answer any questions and feedback during this transition, just email us at contact@mailjet.com.

 

DeveloperWeek: Hacking Valentine’s Day

Earlier last week, Team Amourx participated in DeveloperWeek 2015, which Mailjet was a sponsor of, and Developer Evangelist Tyler Nappy was present to mentor and hold a Mailjet API Challenge. There was a wealth of talent and the decision was tough, but ultimately Team Amourx took home the gold. Below is a recap of their product and instructions so that you can build your very own!

Team Amourx capitalized on the upcoming Valentine’s Day holiday, knowing that some individuals would want to send anonymous love emails to their Valentine instead of traditional handwritten cards.  Our team created a service that would enable users to do just that!  Through a very-stylish front-end, users would be able to easily type their anonymous love emails (and save some trees in the process)!

On the flip side, we recognized that some lucky recipients may also be dealing with the issue of an overwhelming inbox of love-dovey emails. Sorting through hundreds of email can be is an enduring process for anyone. What if they could instead visualize how much love-sentiment is an individual email and use that in deciding whether or not to open? Below, we’ll describe how our team created this visualization.

 

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HARDWARE & MATERIALS

1 Wifi-enabled electric Imp

15 LED lights

Lots of wires

Battery(to power electric imp)

Small battery to for testing connections

1 canvas

Chalk markers or paint

Knife to cut through the canvass

SOFTWARE & RESOURCES

Squirrel hosted on Electric Imp IDE

ngrok to run to expose a local web server to the internet

Python

Mailjet API

Adobe photoshop

Javascript

JQuery

HTML/CSS

 

Natural Language Processing Algorithm:

To kick things off, our team worked on a natural language processing algorithm.  This algorithm is also the primary connector to the electric-imp: if an email has enough sentiment, the hardware is triggered. The algorithm is based on a point system: a sentimental word carries a value.  If the email includes those words, the points are added up for a sum.

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Mailjet API:  

Our team thought the Mailjet Parse API was perfect for our project.  We used the Parse API and the results were sent to our natural language processing algorithm.  Tyler was helpful in getting us acquainted with the API and assisted us overcoming some difficulties.  Overall we loved the Mailjet API!  We hope to continue this project and explore more of Mailjet’s APIs.

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Hardware:

The Electric Imp API provides a set of classes and global objects with which imp code may access local hardware and remote cloud functionality. The API works with the Squirrel Library.  Our team had some growing pains with the Electric Imp –  on Day 1, we were experimenting with it and the Squirrel code but the hardware was unresponsive (probably went to  hardware heaven).  Fortunately, we had backup on the hardware (always back up your work, guys)!  On Sunday morning, we went back to work with the new Electric Imp, not without some difficulty, but we prevailed!

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Canvas:

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Our team wanted recipients to have a stylish object that would react when detecting “lovey” emails.  Malina had an extra canvas, so our team decided to use that as the medium. Once the canvas was decorated, we started connecting, testing, and soldering a lot of LED lights. The final product is pictured above.

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The <3  connection (How it works in the backend):

 

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Anonymous email is sent → Goes through Parse API → Results are sent through language processing algorithm→

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Electric imp provides a handler for HTTP requests. The handler can register a function to be executed on receipt of an incoming HTTP request. The server-based code analyzes what the HTTP request contains.

 

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The device is triggered appropriately.

Recipients will know when they are <3 once the HTTP request has been analyzed. In Team Amourx’s case, the LED lights embedded in ‘LOVE’ will light up if the romantic-language in the email passes a certain threshold.

TEAM AMOURX


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Nadine Hachouche
:  is a hardware and software developer.  She enjoys working on projects that are interactive and have a physical component with which the user can interact.  When she is not coding, she trains for marathons, plays with her dog, and eats everything in sight.  Follow her @nadinefarah.


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Andrew Carl is a code artist working a double role as a sales consultant and software engineer. In his free time, Andrew enjoys finding new ways to solve problems by working on multiple side projects. Also he has expertise in music production and audio editing.

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Malina-Marie: Is a software engineer and hardware enthusiast. She has a passion about finding surprising and delightful ways to integrate art with new technologies.

 

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Sam Carl
is a designer, builder, artist, and draftsman working at an architecture and design firm in Phoenix, AZ. He has experience designing in digital and physical media, including construction work. Here is an installation he helped design and built last spring: http://chriswalkermemorial.blogspot.com/

Mailjet joins M3AAWG

 

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At Mailjet, we take pride in being spam crusaders, in spreading the word about ways to send better email. That’s why we’re especially excited to share that we are now an official member of M3AAWG. M3AAWG (which stands for Messaging, Malware and Mobile Anti-Abuse Working Group) is a global organization that brings cross industry experts, technology and public policy leaders together to work towards eliminating messaging abuse.

As a M3AAWG member, we will be working alongside these leaders to develop and expand on initiatives to fight spam and educate on best practices. This network will strengthen our quest to creating a better inbox experience.

This past week, we flew into San Francisco to attend our first meeting – M3AAWG’s 33rd General Meeting – to learn about and discuss the latest in messaging security. Continue to follow us here or on Twitter @mailjet for more on bot mitigation practices, pending legislation and best practices.

Mailjet Quick-start Guide

Have you set your Mailjet account or simply want to see how easy it is to get started with Mailjet? Here is a quick-start guide to help you do that in minutes. 

This is the ultimate guide to help you set up your Mailjet account to send marketing emails, integrate Mailjet with your CRM or website to send triggered emails and even how to enjoy Mailjet’s rich analytics tools.

In this guide you can expect to learn how to:

  • Set-up with Mailjet
  • Migrate from an existing provider
  • Send Email Newsletters using Mailjet’s online tools
  • REST Email API Introduction
  • Mailjet Plugins
  • Analytics Tools
  • Send Emails via SMTP

Next Generation Email Automation with Mailjet & Sendwithus

Get ready to take your transactional emails to the next level… We’re excited to announce that Mailjet has integrated with Sendwithus! Optimize your transactional messages, engage your customers, and monitor your analytics all from one easy-to-navigate interface.

Sendwithus acts as the bridge between you and email service providers like Mailjet. Not only will you be able to send, track and iterate your transactional and marketing emails straight from Sendwithus’ dashboard or through their API, you’ll also be able to take advantage of their stellar features such as A/B testing, drip campaigns, user segmentation and powerful real-time analytics to quickly find the layout and copy that works best for you. Bypass pesky design requests and buggy code by creating and managing multiple templates straight from their dashboard – build and change your transactional email templates how you want, whenever you want.

To get started, simply connect your Mailjet account to Sendwithus; all the emails that you send will automatically go through Mailjet. If you run into any roadblocks, they have live chat support to get you rolling..

As always, we love to hear your comments and/or questions about our integrations – what would you like to see more of in the future? Say hello at plugins@mailjet.com.

 

 

5 Times Email Would Have Saved The Day In Romantic Movies

Romance movies. It’s a love/hate relationship. One moment they have you laughing and in the next yelling at the TV through your tears. Hollywood has built up an infallible recipe over the years; time and time again the protagonists fall head over heels in love, only to be torn apart by some minor misunderstanding that spiraled out of control.

It seems a lot is left up to serendipity, leading to missed voicemails, intercepted snail mail or misinterpreted Facebook posts. At the end of the day, what these characters need is just a dose of good old personal email communication.

Here are a few classic moments where email could have been the knight in shining armor:

  1. The Notebook

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The premise of the movie is based off of Noah (Ryan Gosling) and Allie’s (Rachel McAdam) reunion after a 14-year separation. It turns out Allie’s mother had hidden Noah’s letters to Allie, disapproving of his social status and inability to complement Allie’s wealthier, well-educated background, a la Romeo and Juliet.

If only Noah had sent Allie an email every day for a year, it could have saved the both a lot of heartache and lost time. Granted, it would also mean depriving the world of seeing Ryan Gosling professing his love in the pouring rain.

 

  1. Love Actually

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Ah, the classic airport scene. Love Actually gets us right in the feels with the scene where Sam chases after his crush in the airport. Contrary to most rom coms, he actually makes it to the boarding gate just in time to share his hidden feelings for her, but an email could have saved him from the hassle of outrunning the TSA.

With the help of email, Sam could have booked a flight and pulled up an e-boarding pass through his inbox. Not only would he warm the hearts of bystanders with his speech and win her heart over, he could also be sitting next to her on the plane.

 

  1. 50 First Dates

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Henry Roth (Adam Sandler) and Lucy (Drew Barrymore) co-star in this tragically hilarious rom com where Lucy suffers from short-term memory loss. Every morning, she’ll wake up and forget the happenings of the day before – Henry has to woo her once again. As evidenced by the scene above, Adam Sandler is sitting at a distance planning his move to reintroduce himself to Drew Barrymore.

A few email tricks could help lighten the load for Sandler. He could use an app like IFTTT, when Drew Barrymore wakes up in the morning and opens her phone to use any number of social media channels, it automatically sends her the video explanation of their love story and sends Sandler a notification that she’s all caught up to date. Sandler won’t have to worry anymore about freaking out strangers at the diner with his intense gaze.

 

  1. The Time Traveler’s Wife

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There’s more of the romance and less of the comedy in Time Traveler’s Wife. Henry DeTamble (Eric Bana) and Clare’s (Rachel McAdams) love story unfolds both backwards and forwards in time since Henry suffers from an uncontrollable genetic disorder that sends him traveling through time. Due to the convoluted nature of time travel, Clare and Henry first meet each other at different points in time – Clare first meets a future version of Henry when she is a child, and continues on to fall in love with future Henry throughout her teen years, leading to a confusing first meeting with “present” Henry when he first meets her at 20.

With the help of scheduled emails through an app like Boomerang, Henry could easily leave himself notes as he travels through time and communicate with Clare during the periods of time where he leaves to travel to another time.

 

  1. You’ve Got Mail

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Last but certainly not least, here’s an instance where email takes credit in writing a happily ever after. Tom Hanks (Joe Fox) and Meg Ryan (Kathleen Kelly) are business rivals in real life – Tom’s big-chain bookstore drives Meg’s indie bookstore out of business – but the anonymity of the internet allows them to converse via email and fall in love.

The most ironic part is that unknowingly bond over their gripes about meeting each other in person. Email allowed for them to process their thoughts and share safely without fear of judgement.

This Valentine’s Day, you might just want to consider email as your wingman. Email just celebrated its 44th birthday and the inbox has quite a proven track record (re: here and here).

What are some creative ways you’ve used email to win over someone’s heart? Or maybe a time someone used email to bring a smile to your face? We’d love to hear your stories below!

Mailjet + Zapier = Integrations made easy!

Integrate your favorite eCommerce or CRM SaaS platforms with Mailjet without dropping a single line of code. How’s that sound?

We’re pleased to announce that our recent integration with Zapier allows you to do just that!  Zapier technology allows you to automate tasks between Mailjet and other online apps. Gone are the days where you spend hours manually copying and pasting email addresses from another web app to your Mailjet contact list.

With the Mailjet and Zapier integration, you’ll be able to automatically subscribe new contacts from your favorite web apps (including Sugar CRM, Salesforce, Shopify, Bigcommerce) directly to your Mailjet contact lists.

Test out our Zap by heading over here. If you’d like to learn more or have any questions, reference our detailed help guide.

As always, we love hearing your thoughts and comments – it’s what helps us create a better experience for you! Drop us a line at plugins@mailjet.com with your feedback, questions or to simply say hi.  

2014 Year in Review: Global Email Marketing Trends

Is email marketing more popular in the U.S. than in France? Do German marketers A/B test more than Americans? And how does email marketing usage compare to social media?  
 
We’ll answer these questions and more in our “State of Email Marketing” report. After surveying 300 marketing decision-makers in 3 different countries, we’ve got the facts to provide you with the big picture.