Premium Service Offerings: What Our TAMs Can Do For You

Isaac Kim
May. 15, 2017 by Isaac Kim

Customers who have signed up for premium services receive what we like to call, “Technical and Deliverability Account Management”. But what does that really mean for you, aside from getting support on a first name basis?

As a SparkPost Technical Account Manager (TAM), I work with many premium service customers on a daily basis. Although some might think we only offer just technical support, TAMs provide much more than that. To get a better understanding of what I do as a TAM for our customers, here’s a typical new premium support customer sign-up journey and the role I play.

Step One: Getting Started

As a TAM, I’m notified when I’ve been assigned a brand new customer who’s decided to join the SparkPost family. I’ll quickly send an introductory welcome email, along with next steps and a request to schedule a kickoff meeting to get started right away. We’re aware of the desire to hit the ground running, and we do our best to meet any critical timelines or cut-off dates to migrate mail traffic to our platform.

During the official kickoff meeting, I introduce myself as the dedicated TAM, and introduce a team member from our awesome Deliverability team, who will work in tandem with me to define message segmentation strategy and IP warmup. We listen to our customer’s concerns and/or risks, review business needs, discuss current sending methodologies, and highlight best practices.

Communication is critical to success, and we have a variety of protocols we use to connect with our customers, from weekly phone calls, to email or even Slack!

The final critical milestone in step one is firming up a go-live date that the customer is aiming for, and ensuring the warm-up plan will not only fulfill the customer’s needs, but also build in enough buffer time to establish credible reputation with the ISPs.

Step Two: Integration

At this point, the customer now has full access to their SparkPost environment, and is fully testing to ensure all systems are good to go for go-live. Our weekly touch point meetings comprise of questions the customer might have with testing, setting up new subaccounts, determining a bounce domain strategy, asking about relay webhooks, and how message events differ from webhook events. I like providing training sessions to my customers through screen sharing to ensure they’re set up for success. I’ll also review the account to check if DNS is correct, if suppression lists are functioning and ready to go, double checking ip pool mapping, and making sure subaccounts are properly set up. The deliverability team and I also refine and make any necessary changes to the warm-up plan and make any final preparations for the start of go-live.

Did I also mention that premium support customers get access to our Inbox Assist Tool (250ok)? This is a powerful third party partner that empowers our customers with data-driven real-time insights into email performance, brand reputation, and DMARC compliance.

Step Three: Go-Live

The day is finally here!

First thing in the morning, I remind my Deliverability counterpart that our customer is going live, and to keep an extra careful watch on their traffic. I’ll log into their environment, review any traffic that might have been sent so far, alert Deliverability if there are any abnormalities, and monitor throughout the day.

Things TAMs look out for in particular detail are ensuring your traffic is properly being routed onto the right dedicated IP pools and that traffic is flowing smoothly without significant delays. Any issues seen here, and we’ll reach out to the customer proactively to remediate as quickly as possible. How’s that for premium service?

Step Four: On-Going Support

The customer is now post Go-Live, and all traffic has successfully been migrated over onto SparkPost. What now?

Our Deliverability team will continue to provide a weekly report with analysis on how traffic is flowing and any remediation that might be required with ISPs. I provide monthly as well as quarterly updates, and share any upcoming features we’re rolling out with the customer, as well as how to leverage the benefits in their specific use case.

I work with customers to bring any additional messaging streams onto SparkPost, discuss any new requirements or feature requests, and always lend a hand for any coding issues or problems that might arise.

We’re Here For You

Sending emails isn’t always smooth sailing, but having a TAM in your corner to help you navigate through rough waters is always a plus. If you have any questions for me about my role as a TAM, find me on Twitter or LinkedIn.

-Isaac Kim

For more insight into our TAM services, check out this post.

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