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Join us as we share what we’re learning as we build a company that approaches work from a fresh perspective. We write about workplace culture, our finances, and our business decisions and strategies.

OpenOct 31, 2016
Team Building Across Six Time Zones: The Tools and Experiments of Buffer

Hi there! This is an older post that we’ve kept around for transparency but that means that sometimes the information is no longer accurate. When I joined the Buffer team, I was employee number 23 or 24, and back then it wasn’t too hard to keep connected to everyone on the team. On top of our go-to communication tools for video conferencing (the now-defunct Sqwiggle) and group instant messaging (HipChat), we had a few systems in place to get to know each other better – including masterminds [

OpenOct 26, 2016
Do the Right Thing: Why We’re Becoming More Mindful in Sharing Swag

We call members of our customer support team “Happiness Heroes,” and positivity is one of our core values. Smiley faces are a key element of our communication. And like many tech companies, we have lots of swag items, like T-shirts, water bottles, stickers, socks and more. So it’s long been our policy to give out lots of swag . We send goodies to anyone, (pretty much) anywhere! Free stuff makes people happy, right? We ask for a mailing address anyti

OpenOct 25, 2016
How One Tweet Changed My Perception of Two Little Words

A lesson I’ve learned over the past four years building and growing the team at Buffer is how important awareness is to self-improvement . I’m starting to think awareness is the tough part. Most of the battle for learning, growing and improving is being aware of what to improve. When I joined Buffer, I was surrounded by a team that values self-improvement and

OpenOct 24, 2016
Building Deliberate Praise Into Remote Culture: 6 Methods We Use at Buffer

Have you ever received a compliment that brightened your day? Your week? As Mother Theresa said, “Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless.” Creating a culture of praise, positivity and recognition has been a pivotal cornerstone of our Buffer culture. Here’s a bit more about why praise is so important, how we deliver praise and recognition across our remote team of 80 employees, and a few lessons we’ve learned.

OpenOct 21, 2016
Buffer in September: App Featured, Retreat Planning Underway, New Podcast!

Buffer Investor Report September 2016 * Last month’s report * All Investor reports * All Buffer reports Editor’s Note: Every month we share an update with all of Buffer’s investors. We also publish that note in full for our Buffer Open audience in keeping with our value of transparency . September was a month of big achievements an

OpenOct 18, 2016
9 Public Speaking Lessons I’ve Learned (So Far!)

Public speaking is a scary or uncomfortable idea for many people. Some people feel they don’t have anything valuable to share. Others feel it’s a lot of effort, don’t see the benefit in speaking publicly or are too anxious to do so. These are definitely all points that previously put me off speaking in public. If I rewind to just a few years ago, there’s no way I would have ever dreamed to speak in front of an audience. But as we’ve mentioned on the blog before in our exploration of stage frig

OpenOct 13, 2016
Buffer Hack Days: Our Intense Experiment for a Creative Jolt

Do you remember the last time you focused solely on one project — a big personal or work-related task — until it was finished? Recently, our data team tried this with a stretch of two full work days they called “hack days.” Four projects came about as a result, as well as a host of other benefits for the data team (and entire company!) Read on to learn more about the experiment, the process and how you could try an event like this for your business or team. In need of focus time, an idea A ha

OpenOct 11, 2016
Inside the Buffercelerator: How We Built a New Product in 9 Weeks (And Why We Shelved It Afterward)

What is it that the customer wants? What is the problem they face each day? What services are they hiring out for that we could meet with a bit of software? What if we could help people create better social media ads? What if that isn’t quite the problem, but rather tracking and spending ad dollars wisely? What if…? What if….? What if…? Sometimes a series of “what ifs” or “whys” can lead to new and exciting places. For three Buffer teammates, an exploration of “what ifs” created a whole new

OpenOct 10, 2016
3 Tips on Running Remote Coaching Sessions

Buffer is a remote company; we are a team of 80 people operating in 11 different time zones, and we don’t own any offices! At Buffer, everyone gets to work from the place they feel the most comfortable in. This lifestyle opens up a lot of possibilities: Some team members decide to pack up and go traveling, while others embrace family life to the fullest from their home office. This freedom also requires us to be more disciplined when it comes to working together — part

OpenOct 7, 2016
How “What if We” Turned into Traveling and Working from an RV Across America

Editor’s note: Join the journey of Buffer’s data analyst, Matt, as he and his wife and two dogs travel across America in an RV while working remotely! This is the first post in an ongoing series. And they’re kicking off their voyage today, October 7th! Go, Matt and Jenna! On a Friday evening in late October, 2015, my wife, Jenna, and I were back-porch philosophizing over a bottle of Tuscany red blend wine at our home in Boulder, Colorado. We can’t remember whose idea it was to begin with, but

OpenOct 6, 2016
The 23 Things We Had to Do Before Launching a Marketing Podcast

Buffer Marketing Report September 2016 * Last month’s report * All marketing reports * All Buffer reports Key Stats Buffer signups 12,422 +25.7% Buffer for Business trials 1,034 -13.7% Social blog sessions 1,227,494 -2.7% Email subscribers 97,205 -3.6% NPS 56 -1.7% Last summer, in a tiny Icelandic coworking space on a Buffer team retreat, we recorded the very

OpenOct 6, 2016
Inside Buffer’s Process for Product Development

Buffer Product Report September 2016 * Last month’s report * All Product reports * All Buffer reports Weekly active users (Awesome + Individual plans) 165,180 +5.1% Weekly active B4B users 4,854 +2.4% B4B Monthly Recurring Revenue $473,425 +4.6% Social updates sent by B4B users 2,998,879 -0.7% Users starting B4B trials in September 5,796 -44.4% Converted B4B tri

OpenOct 6, 2016
Our People Team Explores: Does Transparent Communication Include Slack?

Buffer People Report September 2016 * Last month’s report * All People reports * All Buffer reports Key Stats Applicants 505 +49% Open blog posts published 17 +2 Open blog visitors 133,309 +2.4% Bimonthly team NPS score 60% If we’re known in particular for any of

OpenOct 6, 2016
Introducing Respond’s Customer Service Academy: Bite Sized Lessons For Better Customer Support

Respond Report September 2016 * Last month’s report * All Respond reports * All Buffer reports Key Metrics Customers crushing their support queue in < 2 hours 82% Paying customers ? 82 MoM growth -4% Respond 2 launching in late October! We’re so excited to announce the upcoming release of Respond 2. It’s the culmination of many months of learning and hard work, and the product has been built from t

OpenOct 6, 2016
Meet The Familiar Face Handling Buffer’s Trickiest Support Tickets

Buffer Happiness Report September 2016 * Last month’s report * All Happiness reports * All Buffer reports Key stats in September Responses within 1 hour 36% -24.7% Customer satisfaction score 91 Email conversations 11,698 +39.5% Twitter conversations 5,956 -29.9% Hour avg. Twitter response time 4.2 +27.2% Onboarding Webinars hosted 8 September and in the Nort

OpenOct 6, 2016
Making MRR Actionable: How We’re Fine-Tuning Our Financial Model to Gain Insights

Buffer People Report September 2016 * All People Ops reports * All Buffer reports Key Stats Team members 79 Revenue in cash receipts $996k +1.2% MRR $987k +4.6% ARR $11.8m +5.0% Debits $854.5k –6.1% Profit $122k –1.9% We have $1.56m in the bank as of September 30, which is a good signal! We continue to be cashflow positive, and plan to remain as such. In September, we’ve worked hard on a few topics, especially improving at forecasting our cash planning. Here is a

OpenOct 6, 2016
Streamlining and Improving Buffer’s Video and Image Services

Buffer Engineering Report September 2016 * Last month’s report * All Engineering reports * All Buffer reports Key stats Requests for 196 m Avg. response for 226ms Requests for 1.04 b Avg. response for 86.8 ms Bugs & Quality * Code reviews given: 68% of Pull Requests were reviewed * 4 S1 (severity 1) bugs: 4 opened, 3 closed. (42% smashed) * 24 S2 (severity 2) bugs: 9 opened, 13 closed (59% smashed) Buffer

OpenOct 4, 2016
A Year At Buffer: Top 10 Things I Learned While Working at a Startup

On September 14th, I celebrated my first Buffversary — a year at Buffer , a social media management startup. I thought it would be a good opportunity to take some time to reflect on the past year and share some of the things I learnt. A bit of background: I’m a Community Champion and I have been working on our community initiatives such as our weekly #bufferchat and our Slack community. Recently, after the Marketing and Community team combined forces [

OpenOct 3, 2016
What Happened When We Cut Back on Refunds: A Customer Service Experiment

In Buffer’s history we’ve tried many different experiments that have soared – or flopped. Some with our culture . Some with our management structure (or lack thereof!) . Some with launching products . If a belief or philosophy hasn’t been examined recently, we like to take a closer look and perhaps try something new. We feel that one of our biggest

OpenSep 28, 2016
Why We Give Our Team Paid Time Off to Volunteer

Every employee at Buffer can take a full day or two half-days off each quarter to show gratitude by volunteering or otherwise contributing to their community, wherever they may be. Here’s more detail about the program!

OpenSep 27, 2016
My First 30 Days as a Manager: The 3 Biggest Questions I’ve Asked Myself So Far

It feels ridiculous for me to write about being an engineering manager. It’s a job I’ve done for not even 30 days yet. But that’s what I want to know from others —how did you start? How did you make it through your first month? No two first rodeos are ever alike. But they’re all rodeos, and falling off is falling off. There’s some kind of pattern. So here I am, writing the post that I want to read. What is this job, anyway? I had a rough idea what I was getting into from the internal job des

OpenSep 26, 2016
When Unlimited is Limiting: Why We Changed to Minimum Vacation Recommendations

It’s one of those mythical and vaunted startup perks, and one of the Buffer perks that tends to entice folks the most: unlimited vacation time. When someone new joins the team, they’re immediately granted as much time away from work as they’d like, no questions asked. Under this non-policy policy, teammates have had some great vacations, including cruises around the world and even a month of sailing the Atlantic. But is it really that simple? Well, yes and no. Buffer’s unlimited vacation po

OpenSep 21, 2016
I Failed Buffer’s Bootcamp…Successfully

Heads up! This is an older post that references some outdated processes at Buffer, specifically the “Buffer bootcamp.” Feel free to see the latest information here , including all the reasons why we retired this concept! We’re Retiring The ‘Buffer Bootcamp’ Period For New Teammates – Here’s Why Every new person who joins the Buffer team starts with a 45-day bootcamp trial period [

OpenSep 20, 2016
I Didn’t Mean to Lean Back: The Unexpected Story of Being a Working Mom at a Startup

I’ve “leaned back.” And I’m okay with it. Sort of. As the first teammate to have a baby while working at Buffer, I was able to create our initial family leave policy before I used it. Even that wasn’t enough to prepare me for the reality of being a working mom. Going into motherhood , I had a lot of grandiose ideas, preconceived notions and expectations. The biggest of which was that I’d be able to jump back into m