How Box operationalized email creation at scale
Since 2005, Box has made it easier for people to securely share ideas, collaborate and get work done faster. More than 41 million users from 92,000 businesses, including 70% of the F500, rely on Box’s enterprise content management platform to solve simple and complex challenges, from sharing and accessing files on mobile devices to sophisticated business processes like data governance and retention.
While Box enables its customers to work smarter and faster, the company is similarly focused on evaluating its own operations to identify opportunities for efficiency gains and digital transformations.
Like most large companies, Box leaned heavily on internal development resources and brought in an agency to help produce its emails. When someone needed to create an email, they’d submit a brief to marketing operations. From there, marketing ops routed the request to either have the email coded from scratch or built from a predesigned template. Both approaches presented challenges.
“If I had a dollar for every time I heard somebody say copy was final, I would be a billionaire.”
When team members needed to make changes or copy edits after previewing a fully designed email, they had to rely on marketing ops, devs, or the agency to apply it directly in the HTML for them. The constant back-and-forth became a major source of frustration and inevitably led to production errors that caused issues with how emails rendered and responded on mobile devices.
Box’s rapidly growing business placed additional strain on an email production process that wasn’t ready to scale. Teams across the organization were adding headcount, including the field marketing team, which had quickly doubled in size.
“As teams got larger, the volume and variety of emails they were requesting grew too,” said Jennifer Botts, Senior Customer Communications Manager, Box. “It became impossible for marketing operations to keep up with the demand. We were taking 5-10 days to fulfill each new email request and deadlines were being missed.”
To meet the email demands of the organization, Box needed to replace its existing email production process with one that could scale.
“We needed a platform that’s flexible and can scale with us over the long haul. And we had to be confident that our people would love using it.”
Botts says stensul empowers teams at Box to generate on-brand, responsive emails with no operational bottlenecks standing in their way. “We wanted Boxers to be self-sufficient and get emails to market faster. But we also needed the right controls in place to make sure that moving fast wouldn’t expose us to legal, security, or brand compliance risks.”
Box configures brand guidelines directly into its email modules, can toggle editing permissions on or off for brand-sensitive elements, and has other guardrails in place to ensure perfect emails. “We have task-based alerts, for example, that recognize if someone forgets to add a URL to something they should’ve linked, prompts them to add it, and won’t let them approve the email until it’s fixed.”
“Now that we’re building emails with stensul modules, Box teams can create endless iterations of the layouts they need within our brand guidelines,” said Botts. “They’re bound, but not restricted. It’s a major improvement over the inflexible templates we used in the past.”
Stensul is integrated with Box’s Marketo and Iterable instances, as well as other Marketing Clouds and ESPs from which Box sends emails. Once an email is approved in stensul, it’s pushed directly to the appropriate marketing cloud or ESP for deployment.
These integrations have enabled Box to expand the stensul platform beyond its marketing team. Multiple teams across the organization are now using stensul to create a wide variety of emails spanning product marketing, client communications, events and conferences, webinars, newsletters, security updates, and internal communications.
“We started with ten users just on the marketing team, but have more than doubled that. When we create or update emails, the work happens directly in stensul. So, we’re driving even more operational efficiencies without having to give additional people access to our ESPs or train them on those systems, which are complex and sensitive,” said Botts.
Teams across Box now have the ability to quickly generate the emails they need to reach and engage their target audiences.
The organization has been able to build more emails in less time, increase email quality, and reallocate agency spend toward more strategic projects that help move the business forward.
With stensul, Box completely transformed the way it does email.