Gmail Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes

As you know by now, over here at Sendwithus we’re a team of Email nerds and like to keep on top of email news and happenings in the email world. Recently, Gmail made a few changes that affect the lives of email designers, developers and strategists – we want to be sure you’re in the know.

Gmail will now support CSS media queries!


This means that coding for emails will be easier and your message will be formatted as originally intended, regardless of viewing on a desktop, portrait mode on a phone, or landscape mode on a tablet; the styles will be able to update based upon width, rotation, and resolution making sure your responsive design emails display great on every device.


Startup Slam 3.0

On October 1st we held our third annual StartupSlam event in Victoria, BC. The Sendwithus team, in partnership with Workday and the University of Victoria Computer Science Department, took over the Engineering and Computer Science building from 10 AM until 5:30 PM. The event was a whirlwind of activity with over 300 students, developers, and tech enthusiasts coming together for a day of workshops, education, and community building. This year’s record turnout was a 100% increase over last year, and a strong indicator of the growing Victoria tech community.

Startup Slam

StartupSlam could not have been possible without the support of our community partners, sponsors, and volunteers. This year’s StartupSlam was powered by Workday and several Workday volunteers were on the ground helping out throughout the day. Workday also hosted an awesome workshop on WebSockets. More than 20 local companies supported the event, proving how Victoria’s tech community loves coming together to share knowledge and insights with the next generation of developers and entrepreneurs.

All of these companies came together to make StartupSlam 3.0 a huge success.

Startup Slam Sponsors

What is StartupSlam?

StartupSlam is series of workshops presented by leaders in the Victoria tech community. This year we had three tracks of workshops: Junior Tech, Advanced Tech, and Entrepreneur. The entrepreneur track was a new addition this year in an effort to make the event more inclusive to non-developers, business students, and startup enthusiasts. The complete list of workshops held this year were:

Junior Tech Track

Advanced Tech Track

Entrepreneur Track


We also introduced the “Side Project Side Table” this year, which provided attendees a chance to discuss passion projects with professional developers and mentors. The table was operated and sponsored by Ladies Learning Code mentors, who spent the day reviewing side projects, giving feedback, and discussing with students what they enjoyed building. In exchange for sharing their side projects, students were entered to win a random drawing for a $500 scholarship (furnished by Hello Ventures). It was really exciting to hear about all the great products/ideas that students were building and iterating on.


What is the point of all this?

StartupSlam has two goals, and no, one of those goals was not to see if we could order the most pizza for any event in Victoria; for the record this crew did demolish over 140 pizzas. The first is to introduce modern and industry focused technologies and concepts to students who are predominantly learning and building in an academic environment. These two styles are very different and, like any industry, the more exposure to how things are done “in the wild” is always a benefit to students who will be entering the job market in the near future.

The second goal is to expose students to the variety of tech companies operating in Victoria. Too often we hear from students that they had no idea how many companies have offices in Victoria. By learning and interacting directly with founders and early employees of these companies, students receive a thorough introduction to the growing Victoria tech scene. The Entrepreneur Track exposed attendees and students to what it is like to build early products, start companies and how to bring an idea to real customers.

Live Code demonstrations

Moving Forward

Another year, another StartupSlam has come and gone. The chaos has mellowed, the dust has settled and now we look forward, to BattleSnake 2017! Look forward to a bigger, more expansive programming competition than ever before. The mettle of your team will be tested in battle and the winner will be the last team standing. What that battle will look like, well, you will just have to stay tuned to find out. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook to keep up to date on BattleSnake 2017 and other community events hosted by Sendwithus.

Thanks again to the following companies for making StartupSlam a success


Workday City of Victoria Beanstream Leanpub
Famoso Sendwithus Stembolt Checkfront
MetaLab Fernwood Coffee OneNet Whole Punk Creators
Go2Mobi Kano/Apps Redbrick Ring Partner
Referral SaaSquatch Pretio Interactive Flytographer Starfish Medical
Ladies Learning Code U of Victoria Computer Science dept.

Want to get involved? Reach out to the Sendwithus team at if you are interested in sponsoring, volunteering or participating in BattleSnake 2017 and/or Startup Slam 2017.


Email Zen is on the Horizon

We are thrilled to announce our latest addition to our Open Source Email Template library: the Mantra template. Mantra was built by the super-talented folks at Email Monks. The Monks have reached a new level of coding zen – over at the monastery they code and design email newsletters, landing pages, and responsive emails for a multitude of brands and agencies across the globe. Give them a shout if you need some #blessed emails.  

Mantra’s design is simple, with clean and clear transactional email templates in 9 versions; from a Welcome email to a “Win Back” offer email, they’ve got you covered.


Email Power Hour and the Prisoner of A/Bzkaban

Earlier this year we began hosting a recurring event at our San Francisco HQ – Email Power Hour. We invite local email aficionados and geeks alike (no dementors permitted) to come hang out with us and enjoy snacks, drinks and email nerdery. This past Monday marked the third such occurrence and this time we focused on the topic of A/B testing.


Swubie Alex, leading our discussion.


Webinar: Email Segmentation

Yesterday, I teamed up with fellow email nerd Matt Gonzales of to chat about Email Segmentation. We reviewed common ways to segment users, the crucial first step of having a clean email list, how to avoid stale data and covered some real life email examples when data and timing go wrong in the wild.

Don’t be sad if you missed tuning in for the Hangout – we recorded it!


Webinar: One Size Fits None

Our CEO + Co-founder Matt Harris recently joined up with Dan Buckstaff, VP of Marketing at Jetlore, for a webinar to discuss the trend for “Best of Breed” tech solutions and the importance of email personalization. Fire drills happen, and we know that it can be tough to tune in for an event so we’ve recorded the session and included it below for your viewing pleasure.

Marketing is difficult, shouldn’t I just sign up for one of those all-in-one CRM email marketing systems? That may be the way to hit the “easy button” (and lock you into a large monetary and time investment), however there are tons of other ways to select your martech stack. Companies of all sizes (enterprise to startup) are “unbundling cloud software” by choosing vendors/partner to solve specific growth needs instead of taking years to integrate complex systems.  In order to optimize ROI, businesses are choosing to select the best specialized sales and marketing tools that outperform the native functionality of an all-in-one solution.  



5 Common Mistakes That Destroy Email Deliverability

This post is brought to you by our friend Jessica Martinez. Jessica is a music advocate, social media enthusiast, and Marketing Director of 

In this article we’ll be discussing common mistakes email marketers make that keep their messages from reaching the inbox. If you send email, take note, as you may be committing an email deliverability faux pas without even realizing it.

Email deliverability is the percent of emails that land in the inbox. It doesn’t matter how dazzling your email campaigns are if you have low deliverability. Only a small portion of your recipients will ever see your messages. Inbox placement is influenced by many factors, including your sender reputation, so it’s important you adhere to best practices to ensure your messages get delivered.

While it’s common to make errors from time to time, these offenses can land you in big trouble if they occur frequently. This is a big deal because email deliverability issues are not easily fixed.

The following five mistakes will keep you from seeing the results you want. Continue…

Cerberus: A Template that Teaches You to Code Emails

While there are plenty of tools out there that help you draft emails using a friendly interface, your true email potential will always go untapped if you’re not comfortable digging into the code a bit. Since email is largely a sort of self-taught profession (I’ve never met anyone with an email design degree) usually this means digging into an email coded by someone else or–and good luck with this–code generated by one of those editors you used to consider friendly.

Our latest addition to the Open-Source Template Library, Cerberus, is a set of templates that is meant to bridge that gap. If you already have a general idea of how HTML works, but you shudder at the thought of trying to sort out the 239 different tables in some existing code, give em a look!

hybrid template using max-width

The Cerberus templates were created by our friend Ted Goas to serve as basic frames to build on when creating your own designs, but the first step of doing that is deciding between a couple of different design methodologies: Responsive, Fluid, and Hybrid. His rundown of each method’s strengths and weaknesses is a wonderful jumping off point if you’ve been hearing these phrases but have had a hard time nailing down what they mean.

Webinar: Sendwithus 101

Earlier this week, we teamed up with our friends at Mailgun to host a Webinar for a group of newbies looking to take their Mailgun game to the next level. We introduced them to the Sendwithus platform (including a demo), talked thru a few transactional email wins and fails, and learned how to identify a dreaded Dead End email.

If this sounds like something you’re sad to have missed, you’re in luck because we recorded the demo!

Demo Highlights:

  • Activate your Sendwithus account and set up an email template
  • Fire off an email through a short code example
  • Set up drip campaigns to follow up with prospects and customers
  • A/B test your emails to better optimize your email templates
  • Preview your emails across different devices using Litmus


Inlining Like It’s 1999

One of the more peculiar frustrations of email development is that many email clients strip out the data in your head tag. This means your CSS has to be written inline in a style tag to avoid being amputated. “But,” you may be thinking, “that doesn’t sound very Cascading at all!” and you would be right.

yeah, get in line
Luckily, if you’re using our editor, you never needed to know any of this because we inline everything behind the scenes automatically. If, for whatever crazy reason, you’re not using our editor, that’s fine. It’s your loss. We’re not even hurt. It’s FINE! In fact, it’s so fine we want to do something nice for you, so we’ve made our CSS inliner available for everyone–you don’t even have to log in. Continue…