Ajit Kahaduwe, SVP Carrier Strategy and Product Management Platform & Services, PGi
“Mixpanel is now baked into PGi’s product lifecycle process and has become integral to the team’s planning efforts. As a result, we can adjust features in a much more agile way, as well as reprioritize on the fly.”
PGi provides collaboration solutions for web, video, audio conferences, webinar, webcast and UCaaS. More than 75% of the Fortune 100™ and over 60,000 enterprises trust PGi and their GlobalMeet® product suite to deliver high-quality events and everyday communications. Their products are built for use on any device, and every year more than 330 million workers use GlobalMeet Collaboration to drive productivity and communication.
In 2018, PGi launched a completely redesigned version of their GlobalMeet® Collaboration software, rebuilding its architecture from the ground up with new technology. Post-launch, the team saw a need for in-depth insights into user behavior of the new product.
At the time, PGi’s product team did not have easy access to user data and would have to reach out to a developer for assistance in pulling logs. On top of that, there was no easy way to validate that the data they requested was correct.
“We had Google Analytics, but unfortunately, it was too limited for our purposes. We wanted to become more granular with our analysis and be able to follow user interactions throughout the new version of GlobalMeet® across platforms from mobile, tablet and desktop,” said Phong Nguyen, Product Manager at PGi. “Our product design team was also advocating for a better solution; they didn’t have a clear understanding of how people were using the product and whether their designs were user-friendly.”
“At PGi, we care deeply about growth and retention. From a product management perspective, we didn’t have the data necessary to drive immensely important decisions around engagement—and that was a problem,” said Ajit Kahaduwe, SVP, Carrier Strategy and Product Management Platform & Services at PGi.
The PGi team started evaluating product analytics solutions and ultimately chose Mixpanel.
“Mixpanel has helped us tremendously,” said Ajit. “Asking developers to pull data isn’t an efficient use of their time. Furthermore, getting back the data can often lead to more questions—and more data requests. Pulling an initial set of data could take 1-2 days, but iterations involving further questions would take even longer. That’s where the power of Mixpanel comes in—you can dig through data in seconds and pivot as needed. In the past, that wouldn’t have been feasible.”
The issue was also exacerbated by the underlying complexity of a conferencing product like GlobalMeet® Collaboration. Take webcams, for example. There are multiple logs you could track just for webcams: the number of webcams, turning them on, enabling them, sessions starting, sessions stopping, etc. Knowing which of those events is the one you’re looking for—and how to frame your request to a developer to pull the right data—isn’t easy under the best of circumstances.
“We have a lot of instrumentation points that we need to examine and understand what they mean. By going through the implementation process together and mapping out a success plan, Mixpanel really helped us dig through and understand our data correctly,” said Ajit.
Company-wide, PGi is also trying to become more data-informed. “Previously, we were highly reactive to requests coming from large customers or specific deals in play. Our user base is quite diverse, which makes it hard to tell whether a request only pertains to certain types of customers and if it’s worth pursuing,” said Ajit. “Mixpanel provides us instant access to data, which helps us quantify what these requests mean and how to prioritize them. The GlobalMeet® product is all about simplicity and ease of use, so Mixpanel helps us ensure we’re only adding features that solve pain points or provide crucial functionality for our users.”
“Mixpanel is now baked into PGi’s product lifecycle process and has become integral to the team’s planning efforts. As a result, we can adjust features in a much more agile way, as well as reprioritize on the fly,” said Ajit.
Unified view of customer data
Prior to Mixpanel, PGi was unable to see all the data associated with a customer in one place. Any user that came in with a GlobalMeet® Collaboration account was identified by a specific string of numbers. In order to see which company the user was associated with, the product team had to manually look up the number in a different system.
With Mixpanel’s ability to track events and properties, PGi can easily see which information like which company the user is from, which provider they’re associated with, and the host company name—all in one place.
PGi takes user experience very seriously. Before a new feature goes live, the design team holds panels with users in order to test design prototypes, measuring for “rightness of action and time to action.”
“With these panels, we’re asking: Did this person perform the right action? How fast? If it’s over three seconds, we consider that a fail,” said Ajit. “Meeting products can sometimes feel like high-pressure environments, so it’s paramount that our users can find the right buttons—and quickly—or else they’ll lose trust in our software. It’s paramount that we keep this in mind when making product decisions, and the insights we get from Mixpanel help us do so.”
For example, the team was debating whether to add a full screen capability to GlobalMeet® Collaboration. Sales reported anecdotal customer requests, but the team wasn’t sure if it would be useful or how high the demand was. After deciding to add it, they were blown away by the data in the Insights report, which showed that it was the product’s fourth most popular feature.
“This happened early in our Mixpanel adoption, and it really helped to reinforce the power of the product. We were actually taken aback by just how popular the feature was—and thrilled that we had data proving that this was the right decision,” said Ajit.
Increasing software updates and positive feedback
PGi releases new updates for their desktop clients every two weeks and were curious about how many of their customers were updating their software. After using Insights to view the data, they were surprised by how high the number was, in addition to the fact that customers were on 26 different versions of their software.
PGi already implemented auto-upgrades, but seeing the data around how many people were upgrading regularly vs. not upgrading at all was eye-opening.
“After implementing auto-upgrades in the last two months, it’s been great to see in Mixpanel how quickly people are upgrading now. We can now convert 50% of our desktop users within three days of a push,” said Ajit. “This also helped us make the decision to add a reminder for people entering meetings to upgrade.”
Mixpanel also revealed that users on newer versions of GlobalMeet® Collaboration give more positive ratings of the software than people on older versions, as those versions may lack features and still have bugs that were fixed in newer versions. As a result of the auto-upgrades, PGi increased positive ratings for their desktop client by 2%.
“Dashboards is one of our favorite features; both Phong and I check ours multiple times a day,” said Ajit. “After we implemented Mixpanel, I created dashboards to demonstrate to the PMs all the different ways that we can use the product to graph and visualize interesting data. Each PM has now built out their own dashboards that they track on a consistent basis. For example, our audio and video PMs use the feature to track long-term, daily, weekly, and rolling 30-day trends.”
“We made the decision to partner with Mixpanel’s Professional Services team and have been very happy overall. We had a lot of notes and ideas in our head, but the Mixpanel team helped us organize them and provided us with valuable guidance for a successful implementation,” said Phong. “The turnaround time is also very quick if we have questions, which we appreciate immensely.”