Truc Nguyen


SendRoll is AdRoll's email retargeting product, enabling small business advertisers to drive sales with personalized, triggered emails. We tailor the content and delivery logic based on customer browsing behavior. I lead the product design of the application and dabble in other design-related areas e.g. growth marketing, customer lifecycle management. SendRoll is available to the public in a self-service capacity.

Enabling Businesses to Form Connections with Their Customers

Our goal was to give the small-to-medium businesses the intelligence of email automation in a simple way, which we accomplish by recommending strategies via smart defaults and providing guidance in-situ to the user.

SendRoll brings the power of AdRoll's data-driven intent models to email marketing for small businesses, specifically the retail and e-commerce verticals. These business have been underserved by email marketing platforms, where they have to make a trade-off between performance and sophistication versus ease of use. Email tools small businesses use are focused on branding - beautiful graphics and email editing rather than intelligent delivery which can drive revenue. Most customers in our target market do not have expertise or resources to implement email automation, so they settle for sending branded newsletter blasts.

Shipping an Minimum Viable Product

As a scrappy team less constrained by AdRoll processes, we had to narrow in on what functions were necessary for an initial release. We took a phased approach, rolling out to a small subset of customers already using AdRoll and grew our test user base in the open beta phase.

The initial version of SendRoll didn't have a content creation tool built in but relied on advertisers coming in with their own HTML emails and assets. For the handful of customers who were able to create content outside of SendRoll, they were able to set up and run a campaign. At this point, we primarily concerned about whether a Small Business Advertiser could set up an automated campaign (indepdent of content creation). We weren't concerned yet if SendRoll offered substantial feature parity content editing functions.

An MVP to me is an artifact you create to test a product hypothesis, and its level of fidelity should be scaled to the type of question you're hoping to answer at your stage of product development.

From Conception to Launch

As a product designer, I learned the importance between getting feedback on ideas versus reactions on design solutions. When you're in the validation stage, it's not as helpful to interpret too literally user feedback on defining in the MVP. We knew content creation (making the email to send) would be a hurdle for advertisers setting up their first campaign. Small businesses often didn't have a dedicated creative team and cobble together their marketing materials themselves. Some customers were very brand conscious and described preserving the header and footer of their email templates as a must have.

Delighting Customers by Proactively Setting Up

We created optimized templates a smart default with recommended copy and content tailored to campaign goals. When we released it, we found most of our customers stuck with this option and made minor customizations, contrary to what they stated in user research. When you don't show customers a design solution, the sky is open to all sorts of feature requests and a user's interpretation of how the problem should be solved. Showing a concrete prototype, invites a behavioral response. Instead of leading with "What do you want?" we "Well this is what we have, could you work with it? How?"

Measuring Impact of Design Solutions

Pragmatism is at the heart of our process. We want to design experiences that delight and demonstrate business value at the same time, so we're keen on accurately defining what a successful release or launch means and measuring it. Some metrics we look at are but not limited to activation rate, adoption rate, customer retention, and customer satisfaction.

SendRoll also experiments with using lots of growth tooling and measurement platforms. In addition to the qualitative feedback we contuinally seek from customer interviews and surveys, we also measure engagement with our product with analytics suites like Heap Analytics, Optimizely and in our house tracking.

Case Study: Onboarding and Activating New Customers

From looking at AdRoll's product adoption stats and intuition, we knew the sooner a customer launches a campaign from the time they sign up, the more likely they would stick with the product. To drive product adoption of SendRoll and to demonstrate self service viability, my focus was increasing activation rate of customers who signed up.

Work Samples: Onboarding Iterations
Work Samples: Drip Campaign Creation
Paving the Multi-Product Path

SendRoll was the first product outside of AdRoll display. Part of the challenge was laying a foundation for multi-product navigation, settings, and shared componentry and behavior.

My Contribution

SendRoll functions like a mini-company within AdRoll as a vertical product team. We're a very collabortive and close knit team consisting of PM, Eng, UX, PMM and Business Leads. As the lead (and sole) UX Designer on SendRoll, I am responsible for the full cycle product design and own all internal and external customer facing experiences. I enjoy working in a nimble, small team where we had to be flexible, wear lots of hats, and do what it takes to ship quickly and learn. Done is better than perfect, but it doesn't give you license to put out inferior product you don't go back to fix. Ask for forgiveness rather than permission because getting feedback quickly is critial.

Examples: In early days, when the team wanted to iterate quickly, I put together our marketing collaterol from our landing page to one pagers. To ship a new feature, I fixed bugs in our email HTML templates to render in Outlook.

Methods Used

Competitive Analysis

Copywriting and Editing

Visual Design

Wireframing (Omnigraffle)

High Fidelity Prototyping

Front-End Development


Product Management

User Research


Product Marketing