I never dared to imagine that on an extended vacation in Burgundy, France, joined by my husband and two basset hounds, that the concept we dreamed up would grow to be a 10-year-old company that we call VerticalResponse. With over 500,000 users, 100 employees and an ever expanding office in downtown San Francisco, I’m humbled to say we’ve come a long way, baby.  In order to look forward, I thought it might be fun to take a look back at the good, the bad and the ugly from VRs first 10 years.

Here’s some fun facts you may not know about VR:

  • Our first VR logo was purple and looked like it could be a snowboard logo!
  • The name VerticalResponse came from the way we want your response rates to grow.
  • Our first office was above a Chinese food restaurant and next to a hair salon with no A/C and had a combined smell that could kill you.
  • Our current VP of Product, Josh, was our first employee and started as a customer service representative.

On May 21, 2001 when the first press release went out about VerticalResponse, I had this to say:”With the self-service solution from VerticalResponse a customer with little or no experience can sign on for the first time and execute an email campaign in a matter of minutes for a fraction of a penny per email. Our product also protects the novice user from sending unsolicited email or email that may look unprofessional. Plus, our flexible and powerful product enables even experienced Direct Marketers a solution to deliver their personalized email in a timely, affordable fashion.”Hmm, things haven’t actually changed too much on that front! Here’s a look back at some of our highlights (check out that screenshot of our first homepage!):

VR Milestones2002: In our first year of business we added over 20,000 customers
2004: Launched our Postcard product
2005: Launched VR for AppExchange
Named #26 on the SF list of Fastest Growing Businesses
Named a Finalist at the Stevie’s Awards
2006: Introduced the VerticalResponse Non-Profits Program
2007: Named #4 Best Places to Work in the Bay Area by the SF Times
Won Best Overall Company in the Stevie’s Awards
Announced our Google Analytics integration
2008: Launched Pay-Per-Month Pricing
Launched Survey product
2009: Launched VerticalResponse for Intuit Workplace
Named the Ernest & Young Entrepreneur of the Year
Named Best Places to Work for 3rd year in a row
2010: Released new social media features
Launched New Deal video competition
Released Email Creation Editors Upgrade
Named Best Entrepreneur at 7th Annual Stevie’s Awards
2011: Take Action User Seminar Tours US
VR turns 10!I truly believe the best is yet to come and that 2011 will be an epic year for VerticalResponse – a year in which our loyal and new customers will be rewarded with some highly anticipated feature enhancements, templates that will rock your email world, and so much more. To the amazing customers that use our system, the partners that extend our services and to the employees of VR, thanks for taking this journey along with me and for all your support during the first 10 years and the next 10 too!



© 2011 – 2012, Contributing Author. All rights reserved.

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