What can others learn from how you conceived of and designed your mobile solution or application?: 

Our mobile solution began with a simple question: how do our customers work? Through research, we determined that our customers use MailChimp in different contexts throughout the day—on the train (ipad/mobile), at the office (desktop), on the plane (phone), and on the couch (laptop). With a firm understanding of context, we could conceptualize a complete MailChimp app continuum that goes with our customers. We’re now device agnostic, and mobile-friendly. Others can learn from the conception and design of our mobile solution that research always pays, and that one size not only won’t fit all—it likely won’t fit a single person.

By understanding the needs of customers first, and offering options and flexibility, we created something truly useful.

Please describe how the concept for your mobile solution or application came about, and what research, information, inspiration, etc. informed it.: 

We started by simply asking lots of questions:

  • Where do people use our software?
  • Where would it be handy to use our software beyond what was currently available?
  • How do people work? How is the two-screen life (watching tv while web surfing) influencing the work-life balance?

With a solid understanding that people work before arriving at work, and during lunch, and during commutes, we knew we needed to adapt MailChimp to fit this world. By creating a platform-independent yet unified experience, we allowed MailChimp to fit any scenario. This is best exemplified in our “MailChimp Goes With You” campaign:

How does your mobile solution or application take advantage of the unique device capabilities, contexts of use, modes of use, and other factors to create a new and valuable experience or utility?: 

We try to anticipate both the advantages and disadvantages of mobile devices and contexts. For instance, by checking in and pulling down changesets when a data connection is present, our mobile apps allow realtime collaboration among a distributed team.

Further, the absence of a data connection doesn’t inhibit the ability to use our mobile apps—changes are logged and synthesized with the work of colleagues when the data connection is restored.

In what ways has your mobile solution or application benefited the lives and/or work of its users in ways that weren’t previously possible?: 

Our apps now accommodate the unique workflows of our customers, allowing them to work where and when the want—from the couch to the bus to the office.

If applicable, how did you adapt your solution or application to differing platforms?: 

MailChimp now features a responsive web app (, a mobile app for managing account functions (MailChimp Mobile for iOS and Android), and an editor for creating, designing, and refining campaigns (MailChimp Editor for iOS and Android). These adaptations improved the design of the app by allowing the same features and performance to any customer, on most any device, anywhere.

How might your mobile solution or application serve as inspiration or a starting point for future innovations for mobile platforms?: 

Favoring one type of customer at the expense of another is no way to build an experience. Our MailChimp mobile apps extend the same experience to all devices and all customers. We hope our mobile solutions inspire others to research how customers live and work, and design experiences to fit those contexts.