There are moments in the history of your business that force you to take stock of your journey and look back, at the good and the bad, and the milestones that brought you to where you are now, and what still motivates you to get up and continue to innovate.
Today is one.
But first, let me highlight some of our past milestones (in order).
Steve Jobs once said: You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.
This statement is so true. Even if you don’t understand it at the time, everything is connected in some way. Every action, every success, and every mistake you make, all connect up and bring you to where you are today.
Here are some of our key milestones over the years…
#1 Focusing just on email, and naming the company MailNinja
The first milestone was deciding to name my company MailNinja. Prior to that we were called Kudos and focused primarily on website and logo design. Slowly I transitioned towards email marketing (best decision I ever made) and changed the name to MailNinja, which was a domain I owned for a while beforehand and didn’t know what to do with it.
#2 Becoming a Mailchimp partner
With the focus on email, it was clear we needed to partner up with the biggest players in the email game. Mailchimp at the time was still gaining momentum and wasn’t the dominant player they are now, but we saw the growth and the opportunity and decided to align ourselves with them above anyone else. A decision that has paid of big, and we are now Pro partners, and as of now (April 2021) we are their #1 listed partner.
#3 Hiring our first employee
We hired our first employee back in Feb 2015, until then ‘we’ was actually just me and my business partner, with some trusty freelancers to support our campaigns. It was clear to me that we needed a solid central base within the business. Whilst continuing to work with freelancers, we needed a team in house to maintain standards and be a solid foundation for growth. A model which holds true today.
#4 Visiting Mailchimp HQ
In April 2019 I was invited to visit Mailchimp HQ in Atlanta. This was awe-inspiring and amazing. This article is an in-depth review of our trip. I got to meet Ben and Dan (the founders), and experience the Mailchimp culture. This trip broadened my view of what was possible and inspired me to take bigger leaps forward.
#5 Productising and systemising the business
Our 2020 story. When COVID hit, we all went home and I had time to think about that key question every business owner is faced with occasionally – what next? The answer came in the form of transforming our services into packaged products and forming very clear systems in which our team (internal and external) could follow. This article explains our approach. The crux of HOW we did this is being turned into a book entitled Scale, showing other service businesses how to do the same. You can pre-order your free copy here.
#6 Acquiring Chimp Essentials (today’s BREAKING NEWS)…
Bang up to date. April 2021, exactly 2 years on from our trip to Atlanta, and this time we have an announcement to make…
Drum roll, please…
You will all be familiar with Chimp Essentials, at least you probably should be, as it’s an amazing resource for anyone using Mailchimp. Paul Jarvis created Chimp Essentials a few years back, and has gone on to enrol 7,000 students, wow! Due to Paul’s focus on Fathom Analytics, I approached him to see what his plans were for the course, lucky for me he offered to sell, I accepted, a deal was done!
We plan to take the amazing product Paul created, bring it up to date (Mailchimp have launched a few minor updates recently), and create an amazing community around the brand.
It’s an honour to take the baton from Paul and continue to grow the Chimp Essentials brand, and we look forward to working with our students, both past, present and into the future.
You can learn more about Chimp Essentials right here – chimpessentials.com