Beautiful email marketing materials on the go

The project started as an incubation project in Outlook lab, and later, became a part of the Office Small Business Suits.

It helps small businesses attract and retain customers with simple to use email marketing tools. The product held easy-to-create professional email marketing campaigns with pre-designed templates for announcements, newsletters and referrals.

The connections app become a part of the Microsoft Small Business Suite for Office 365 Business Premium users.
Design lead
Microsoft Office, Outlook lab

"Connections app make it easy for small business owner to ask referral (and send out coupons) on the go. It's designed for business owners to set up referral campaign with a few clicks, the specific designed templates with pre-filled text make it possible for everybody to send out professional referral on finger click."

Discover the business opportunity from the roots

In the early stages, I worked with the research team to find out users' needs and insights through talking and shadowing over 10 small business owners across west coast and east cost. We built prototypes to rapidly test our product direction with potential users to make sure that we were building match our users' need.

Pain point

hard to create good looking templates, hard to create and follow up referrals, hard to manage the customer contact list.

Value proposition

increase SMB business, an easy solution for SMB users to create high quality referrals and campaigns on the go.

Design principles

Design a tool for SMB owners that is simple to create and follow the referrals and champions. It can be used on the go and create high quality champions with a few clicks.

Featured screens

Referral creation flow

Designing a seem-less referral creation experience was the biggest design challenge. To guide user set up the the referral successfully, the process were divided into 3 steps which are 1. setup, 2. edit, 3, send.

Branding & style guide

The target users are small business owners, I want the color palette to represent "live, personal, passion, motive". Therefore, bright color is chosen as the primary color and action color.