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2017 on Inside Intercom

After publishing 230 articles and 3 books, releasing almost 50 podcasts, creating 4 starter kits and supporting a world tour, 2017 is drawing to a close on Inside Intercom, which means it’s time for our traditional look back at the year.

We published lots of new stuff this year – hardcover books, starter kits, and audio essays to highlight just a few – but our bread and butter is still great blog posts. We’re now publishing up to 6 posts a week, and here’s a selection of some of the more popular ones we added during the year:

  1. The full stack design system
  2. Great PMs don’t spend their time on solutions
  3. Engineering a culture of psychological safety
  4. People leave managers, not companies. Don’t let that manager be you.
  5. The minimum viable product design portfolio
  6. Applying systems thinking in product design
  7. The cult of conversational design and why forms aren’t dead yet
  8. 6 weeks: why it’s the Goldilocks of product timeframes
  9. How to run 1:1 meetings that work for 2
  10. Designing workshops that work: getting better at brainstorming


The Inside Intercom podcast

Following the success of our relaunched podcast in 2016, we made a commitment to bring listeners a podcast each week this year. Fast forward 52 weeks, and we’ve published 46 original conversations with thought leaders and practitioners in product management, design, marketing, engineering and the business of startups. Among them, we experimented with new formats, like audio essays and compilations of highlights, as well as partnering with our events team for our first live recording, during the Dreamforce conference. In total that’s roughly 24 hours of listening material, so for those looking to catch up over the holiday break, Adam Risman, the editor who fronts our podcast, has selected his favorite episodes from the past year in the playlist below.

Our first audiobook

In an effort to give you more options and flexibility for how you consume our content and share helpful insights with your teams, we recorded an audio version of our very first hit book, Intercom on Product Management. Divided into 9 shorter chapters and released as a podcast series, each lesson is narrated by a member of the Intercom team who actually practices what’s being preached. You can listen to it below, and lookout for more audiobooks and other innovative audio content in the year to come.

Expanding our bookshelf

In an increasingly crowded market the only way to stand out from the crowd is to (shock, horror) give readers something they’ll actually want to read, writes Intercom books guru Geoffrey Keating. Over the past year, we’ve found success by trying to ensure our books (digital and physical) reflect the qualities that make print great.

Intercom on Starting Up

In June we published our very first print book, an honest take on the mistakes we’ve made and successes we’ve experienced over the past 6 years of building Intercom. Transitioning from digital to print was a big jump for us as a team (turns out shipping books worldwide is a bit harder than you would imagine). We’re really proud of our digital books, but getting the chance to produce something tangible, something you would be proud to have on your coffee table, pushed us to the next level.

We’ve now sold 15,000 copies (digital and print) of the book, but the most most significant result so far has come in the form of feedback from readers, who’ve been enjoying the book all across the globe.

Intercom on Customer Support

You’re probably familiar with the term “technical debt”, but have you heard of “content debt”? When you’re lucky enough to work with a company that ships dozens of times a day all year round, that beautiful book you published last year can quickly go out of date. We kicked off this year with a brand new version of Intercom on Customer Support, which addresses the challenges of building and growing a customer support team in a brand new way. As we learn from our own experiences, it’s only fair we pass those lessons on to our readers too.

Intercom on Customer Engagement

Given that we’ve spent the past 6 years building messaging products, it’s safe to say we know a thing or two about what makes a good message and what makes a bad one. In this book, we outline strategies that will make sure every message you send will land at the right place, at the right time, and in an appropriate medium.

Getting you started

This year, we also invested heavily in giving you shorter, more tactical pieces of long-form writing to help your business. If our books are all about telling you why you need to invest in customer support, onboarding, product management etc, our Starter Kits are designed to show you how to kick things off. Based on tried and tested recipes, they provide a step-by-step guide to nurturing users on a free trial and onboarding new signups, all the way through to upselling existing ones.