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.
For more insight into our TAM services, check out this post.
Meet the Team That Makes You Successful
How do I install and configure my mail server? How do I get the best deliverability to ensure maximum inbox placement? What data can I get back out of the system?
Anyone working with email systems has probably asked one of the above questions before, and you’ve probably gotten your answer directly from our Tier 2 support team. Their mission is to convey a passion for the customer and to consistently deliver the best service experience and timely case resolutions for Port25, Momentum, and SparkPost. Today, we’d love for you to meet the people behind the curtain so to speak, and get to know them a little better.
First, a bit of background on me.
For those of you who are long time PowerMTA customers you have probably worked with me if you ever had a PowerMTA or PMC support issue. I’m Scott Habicht, the guy who ran Port25 support for 10 years. Last year, I took a slight detour to head over to the sales side of the house and work as a Sales Engineer selling SparkPost, but now I’m back.
As much as I enjoyed working with sales, I wanted to make sure the post-sales experience was the best it could possibly be for the customer. I have a great love for the Port25 customer base and know many of the customers simply by their voice when they call into support. I felt my best service to the company would be to continue to help those customers, so when I was offered to head up the Tier 2 support group, I was happy to accept the position.
This time, however, I won’t be handling just Port25 cases. In addition to PowerMTA and PMC, I’ll also be in charge of Tier 2 support for Momentum and SparkPost cases. I’m really excited about bringing my passion for customer success and satisfaction to our entire product offering.
The Tier 2 Support Team
I’d like to also take this time to introduce the Tier 2 support team. These are the folks that will be answering the phone calls and emails when you need to talk to someone on Tier 2, and we thought it would be fun to give you a bit more background on each of these team members.
I’ve been working on the support team since early 2016. I love exploring the great outdoors and really dig near-ancient and really ancient human history. My dreams are to hit the highest peaks of every continent and to explore the world’s prehistoric painted caves. When I’m not hiking, camping or whitewater rafting, I like to ‘optimize’ things – be it in finding the most efficient algorithm to kitchen things, chores, or squeezing the performance out of my home servers. Interesting fact about me: I was a TV Producer in Los Angeles in my past career.
I started my career working in theater and film way back in the day. Twenty years ago I made the switch to the computer industry as a developer, then project manager and now technical support. In my off time I like to bake my own bread, try my hand at woodworking, home improvement, gardening and sometimes making beer.
My name is Raymond, and I’m based in Beijing, China. I’ve been in the IT industry for over 12 years and at Message Systems & SparkPost for over 6 years. I love Linux-based technology and the systems built on it, like email systems, database systems, etc. In my free time, I like to travel, read historical books and enjoy classical music. My favorite part about my job is communicating with people in different cities and countries.
My name is Eryck Montes and have been working in IT for the last 18 years. I started as a Junior SysAdmin and paved my way up to Senior *nix Admin. In my free time, I go to a gym nearby, for a run/cycle/swim or play something on my Xbox. Interesting fact about me, in 2004 I completed an Ironman Triathlon in Brazil.
I’m Colin Chong, and I’ve been working in the IT field in over 10 years. I started my support career with Microsoft, supporting Windows 95, 98 and ME, eventually ending up at a hospital Helpdesk group where I stayed for 10 years. I started at SparkPost in March of 2016 and have really relished the opportunity to expand my knowledge and work with a different environment in a professional setting. Some of my hobbies include photography and cooking. I love trying new recipes out and learning to appreciate the subtle flavors that every culture has to offer.
I am Daniel Mackay, I have worked for SparkPost for a little more than 7 years. Originally born and raised in Australia, I moved to the US about 12 years ago. I have been working in support for approximately 20 years, I got my start as IT Helpdesk at my University. In my free time, I like spending time with my two children and my wife, traveling around the west coast and hiking trails around Seattle. I also am an avid gamer and play a wide variety of games on all consoles and PCs.
I have been at SparkPost since mid-2015. I developed my interest in computers early in my life with an aspiration for creating independent video games. When I’m not working, I’m either hitting up the local pub with friends, or heading to the nearest gaming tournament. Aside from gaming, I love good coffee as well as good beer. I am also a musician, playing drums, bass guitar, and trombone.
So, that’s the whole team! We’re here to help answer your questions and resolve issues. If you have any questions, you can always contact me directly. So, feel free to drop me a note and say hi, your emails are always welcome and appreciated.