Forge 2023

Congratulations to the Forge 2023 Torchie Awards Winners

Team Braze By Team Braze Oct 16, 2023

The annual Braze Torchie Awards is a celebration of the leading brands and marketers who are building the future of customer engagement. This year we’re pleased to recognize an exceptional class of award winners who are finding innovative ways to forge connections and strengthen relationships—one message at a time.

Campaign of the Year: Canva

This award recognizes a specific campaign that demonstrates strategic leadership and technical proficiency in the pursuit of stronger consumer/brand relationships.

Congratulations to Canva for winning the 2023 Torchie Award for “Campaign of the Year.” Their “Time to Try” campaign, an educational series powered by real-time personalization, helped the team slash hundreds of hours of production time while increasing engagement rates.

Back in 2019, the brand introduced a series of customer outreach campaigns designed to encourage users to explore five new product features available. Fast forward to 2023, and the vastly expanded Canva now has hundreds of unique product features available for customers to take advantage of. Recognizing their legacy campaigns simply couldn’t keep pace with the online design platform’s product velocity, the team knew they needed a new way to keep the community informed in an efficient, yet personalized way. They also needed to ensure the campaigns could continuously be refreshed in lockstep with the company’s latest branding and product features. Enter Braze Catalogs, a no-code marketing personalization tool that allows brands to seamlessly integrate information from their product, goods, or services catalogs to customize messages.

Thanks to Catalogs and other powerful customer engagement features from Braze, the team has overhauled their original educational series, developing a dynamic program that triggers messages to be sent to individual users based on designs they have recently created.

With a total of 400 unique message variants making up the entire “Time to Try” campaign, the reach of the campaign has increased from 500K users per day to 750K users. Plus, the team has managed to save approximately 1,000 hours of production resources by leveraging existing content and Braze Catalogs. At the same time, they’ve almost doubled unique open rates from 12.46% to 23.61% and almost tripled average unique click rates from 0.16% to 0.45%.

The team is continuing to iterate upon these efforts, and has begun rolling out phase two efforts and is at the planning stages for phase three and beyond.

Rising Marketing Star: Samara Halperin, Lifecycle Marketing Associate for Talkspace

This award recognizes an exceptional new user of the Braze platform whose work leverages technology in thoughtful, effective ways to support better user relationships and stronger business outcomes.

The virtual behavioral healthcare company Talkspace provides coverage for approximately 110 million individuals through the company’s partnerships with employers, health plans, and paid benefits programs. With a focus on better serving their customers, Samara Halperin, Lifecycle Marketing Associate at Talkspace, has spent the last year and a half enhancing the company’s lifecycle marketing program.

We are pleased to name Samara as our 2023 “Rising Marketing Star” for demonstrating exceptional growth and potential for her efforts, which include creating three to four weekly campaigns, optimizing Canvases, and evaluating new conversion strategies against existing efforts using A/B testing.

Collaborative Team of the Year: Grubhub

This category recognizes teams who work across disciplines to collaboratively create best-in-class campaigns for their audiences using Braze.

Setting the standard for best-in-class teamwork, Grubhub’s restaurant retention marketing group’s cross-functional customer engagement efforts span six departments—including marketing, account success, and revenue operations—working together to achieve brand health objectives and put customers first. That’s why we’re pleased to name Grubhub as the 2023 “Collaborative Team of the Year.”

Adopting an innovative use of Braze, the cross-functional group leverages Braze Canvas to conduct an ongoing Net Promoter Score survey that targets a random subset of restaurant customers once a month to collect timely satisfaction scores and customer feedback from restaurant partners. The results are shared internally across 22 cross-functional partners, allowing the appropriate team members to close the loop and reach out to restaurants that have raised concerns about the Grubhub platform or brand. Additionally, account representatives use these insights to improve relationships with high-priority accounts.

Marketing Leader of the Year: Christine Miller, Senior Director, Global CRM Operations for Warner Bros. Discovery

This award recognizes a marketing executive or executives who manage a team that builds innovative, personalized, customer-centric campaigns in Braze.

The global CRM operations team at Max (formerly HBO Max) has had an incredible year, led by Christine Miller, Senior Director, Global CRM—our 2023 “Marketing Leader of the Year.” We’re pleased to recognize Christine for raising the bar in all that she does. This year alone, Christine’s team debuted the Max streaming app with some of the most innovative, sophisticated, and personalized automations the industry has seen.

At the same time, she has united three separate regional groups to form one impactful global team, overseeing superstars representing EMEA, LATAM, and the US. Christine continuously encourages the team to share learnings and resources so they can learn from each other to become more efficient and creative.

Combined, Christine’s efforts have driven tremendous results for the company’s growth and engagement program, delivering impressive business outcomes across the board, including gains in subscription conversion rates and a decrease in churn.

Bonfire Community Leader: Kristijan Arsov, Lifecycle Marketing Manager for Lifesum

This award recognizes a veteran Braze Bonfire community member who is an active participant who stands out for helping peer Braze users.

A former Bonfire Marketer of the Month, Kristijan Arsov, Lifecycle Marketing Manager for Lifesum, is a helpful and active member of the Bonfire community. We’re proud to recognize this “Bonfire Community Leader of the Year” Torchie Award winner for his consistent efforts in providing assistance to fellow members, sharing insightful use cases, and contributing valuable product feedback to the Braze team.

Creative Excellence Award: Peacock

This award recognizes a team that has harnessed the Braze customer engagement platform to deliver original, innovative customer messaging experiences.

This year’s award for “Creative Excellence” goes to NBCUniversal’s Peacock for launching a successful year-in-review campaign. The result of six months of careful planning, Peacock worked with Braze and Braze Alloys partners, mParticle, Movable Ink, and Pickaxe, Peacock to deliver a personalized campaign that highlighted recipients’ most-streamed day of the week, month of the year, and genres as well as the number of hours logged during their biggest binge-watching sessions. The brand balanced celebrating customers’ streaming milestones while also protecting consumer privacy and ensuring compliance with the US Video Privacy Protection Act of 1988.

Ultimately, the campaign created a moment—a chance for the brand to generate buzz and excitement among entertainment fans, as users shared their “year in streams” on social media. In addition, the streaming service achieved impressive results: Reducing churn by 20%, driving upgrades from free to paid subscriptions by 6%, and unlocking a two-point lift in the rate of users returning to view content.

Technology Partner Use Case of the Year: Census

This category recognizes a Braze Alloys technology partner who enables brands to deliver exceptional experiences to their users

We're proud to recognize Braze Alloys tech partner Census as our 2023 pick for “Technology Partner Use Case of the Year" for their work with Canva. With over 125 million monthly users and growing, Canva generates a wealth of customer data, which the team leverages via Braze Alloys partner data cloud platform Snowflake to power an incredibly effective customer engagement program. To maximize the use of the brand’s 200 terabytes of Snowflake data, Canva selected Braze Alloys partner Census to help enhance their personalization efforts as their reverse ETL tool.

This strategic move helped the company save over $200K annually on engineering costs, while also streamlining audience building, expediting testing efforts, and delivering gains in email campaign open rates and platform engagement.

Solutions Partner Story of the Year: Ogilvy

This category recognizes a Braze Alloys agency partner who helps unlock innovative and creative campaigns for some of the most admired brands in the world.

Braze Alloys solutions partners represent the world’s leading agencies, consultancy firms, and systems integrators. Today, we’re pleased to recognize Ogilvy, a full-service agency, for their work to help Gympass, a corporate wellbeing platform, drive more revenue, clicks, and new users with their customer engagement campaigns.

Ogilvy helped Gympass launch a personalized customer journey encompassing email, in-app messaging, and push notifications using Braze Canvas Flow. By capturing compelling first-party data and using these insights to tailor marketing communications aligned to individual recipients’ unique goals and desires, the team was able to accelerate conversions and engagement: Driving 25% net-new revenue within the company’s new subscriber revenue stream, increasing sign-up volume by 3X, unlocking 70% click-through rates, and achieving a 5% uplift in conversion rates.

Congratulations to all of our 2023 nominees and winners, and thank you to everyone who attended this year’s Forge.

Team Braze

Team Braze

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