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How Tyler, the Creator shaped Celi

I refuse to be passive with my own sh*t. I’ve put too much time, and love, and energy, into this project, not to tell poeple. 

Celi is ready.

This past week we stress-tested Celi’s notification system with users across 10 countries.

On the first day, 69.37% of the notifications were sent without error.

On the second day, 86.11% of the notifications were sent without error.

On the third, fourth, and fifth day, 100% of the notifications were sent without error.

For that accomplishment, we celi Celi’s founding full stack engineer Tristan Marchand and senior software engineer Andy Seo.

Next, we’ll finish the dashboard and invite you in.

Until then, here’s a sneak peek of Celi and a story about how Tyler, the Creator inspired it:

Tyler, the Creator is a multi-hyphenate.

He founded Odd Future, which launched the careers of Earl Sweatshirt, Frank Ocean, and Syd.

He’s directed music videos and television series.

He created the Camp Flog Gnaw Carnival and his own clothing line Golf Wang.

He’s also won 2 Grammy Awards from 7 total nominations.

In Paris, 1 year ago, he participated in a Converse All-Star Series Talk.

During the audience Q&A segment, he encouraged an audience member to stand by her work. 

“You mean to tell me you're going to be passive with your own shit?

Are you fucking crazy bro? Let motherfuckers know.

I put too much time, and love, and energy, into this finished project, not too.

Tell people. Promote your shit. Let people know.

Be proud of the shit you make.

Tyler, the Creator

I’m proud of the shit I make.

I’m proud of Celi.

My most prized possessions don’t hang on a wall, park in a garage, or strut streets. 

My most prized possessions are my sobriety and my relationships. 

I’m incredibly proud to have built a product that celibrates, encourages, and improves the quality of both of these.

Simply embedding a link to Celi’s website last week wasn’t enough. 

I need to be a bit louder.

A bit more insistent that you visit, reserve your username, and share Celi.

I’ve put too much time, and love, and energy, into this project, not too.

If you stop reading here, that’s totally cool.

This send was about focusing your attention on Celi’s site.

The below details the decisions that went into Celi’s website design.

It’s for me, but you’re welcome to enjoy it.

Landing Page

Landing on Celi’s website, you immediately understand the value we provide you: By using Celi, I’ll never miss a moment again. 

And how: Celi knows my friends’ most important dates and reminds me of them by email, text, and WhatsApp. 

The rotating date and notification examples define what a beyond the birthday date is, and prep you for our notification experience.

Twice, we invite you to create your Celi account, freezing one in the header as you scroll.

This is the only CTA.

Thank you to the 30 of you who voted for this.

Learn what matters to your friends

Before you can celi a birthday or beyond date, you must be reminded of it. 

Before you can be reminded of a birthday or beyond date, you must know it. 

That is what Celi does for you. 

At current volumes, you’ll discover more than 60 of your friends and family’s most important dates on Celi.

Dates, that if we’re being honest about, you previously had zero visibility into. 

Not only are these dates an opportunity to celi your connections, but they nudge you into more frequent and meaningful conversations with your most important people, on their most important days.

Celi improves your relationships and protects them from going dormant, with zero effort. 

Create. Connect. Celi.

With any product, the end-user asks “How do I use this?” 

Celi’s simple.

Create your profile with your own important dates.

Connect with your friends to learn their dates.

Celi your connections with SMS, WhatsApp, and email reminders.

This section uses real product visuals to educate you on how Celi works and that you are only responsible for your own dates.

It then informs you that connecting is how Celi learns and reminds you of your connection’s most important dates.

Celi solves your problem

Celi solves my problem, and yours too.

Prior to building Celi, you and 386 of your peers told me that:

  • 92% of you have forgotten a birthday

  • 76%  of you have forgotten a friend's important life date

  • 75%  of you have tried and failed to solve this problem

  • 89%  of you want to solve this problem

Not everyone who visits Celi’s website will know that. 

There are five stages in the adoption process for new technologies.

  1. The Innovators. The first people to adopt a new technology. Those who want to be the first to try out new things.

  2. The Early Adopters. The next group to adopt an innovation. Those who are quick to catch on to new ideas and trends. 

  3. The Early Majority. The first part of the mainstream to adopt a new idea. Those who are open to change but don't want to be the first. 

  4. The Late Majority. The skeptical part of the mainstream. Those who will only adopt an innovation after the majority has done so. 

  5. The Laggards. The last group to adopt an innovation. Those who are bound by tradition, very conservative, and critical of change.

We need to educate every member of these populations, especially the late majority and laggards who deceive themselves into thinking they don’t experience this problem.

Though 8% of people claim to have never missed a birthday or beyond date, from post-survey user interviews we learned that this figure is 0%. 

Every person has missed a birthday or beyond date.

Every person has experienced the problem that Celi solves.

This is due to incomplete solutions like calendars, social media, or birthday apps, and in part because you simply don’t know all of your friends and family’s beyond the birthday dates.

The exact dates that Celi discovers and reminds you of.


From Celi’s beta test, we learned that 

  • 91% of users would be somewhat or very disappointed if they couldn’t use Celi anymore

  • 35% of users consider Celi to be a must-have

  • 52% of users have found magic in Celi

We also received 37 testimonials and chose the 14 that best communicate Celi’s value.

Celibrating our differences

I was classmates with the co-founders of Magic Spoon, the childlike cereal for grown-ups, and often reference their work as a product marketing benchmark. 

Specifically, their Us vs. Them page

Because of the Celi survey, I knew Celi users had previously tried and failed to solve these problems with calendars, birthday apps, and social media.

I knew others would too, so I needed to reinforce how Celi is different and solves the problem that these platforms cannot. 

I didn’t want to be hostile though, hence the title Celibrating our differences. 

This table highlights that Celi is the only solution that solves both of the problems: knowing and remembering.

Our cherry on top is that Celi incentivizes quality connections, hosting your local network. 

Okay, maybe this title is a little passive-aggressive. 

Privacy Prioritized. Periodt.

Celi ethically collects more zero-party data than any previous platform. 

Yes, more than Facebook - the giant that rode first-party data to a $104 billion IPO in 2012.

To use Celi, means to trust Celi. 

While some of these terms may be quite technical, it was important for us to lead with how seriously we take security. 

If you don’t understand the Periodt, ask a Gen Z.

The Celibration Station

To further introduce and educate users, we added a blog.

The three published titles address the most common questions we receive. 

Celi is a verb. 

Short for celebrate, and like Uber, Google, and Venmo, Celi is both our name and how you use us. 

When you “celi someone,” you recognize them for who they are, what makes them unique, and are celibrating their most important dates with them.

Those dates, like Celi, we mostly made up.

The Celi Index defines every date and term on Celi.

On Celi, you’re only responsible for your own dates. 

You’re also only responsible for three actions: Create, connect, celi.

Create your profile with your own important dates.

Connect with friends, family, and co-workers to learn their important dates.

Celi your connections when we remind you of their important dates by email, text, and WhatsApp.

How Celi works details this. 

The final blog, How Celi is different than your calendar or birthday app, goes into detail to explain why we believe Celi is the only sufficient solution to these problems, and how Celi is different than your calendar, birthday apps, and social media. 

I refuse to be passive with my own shit. 

I’ve put too much time, and love, and energy, into this project, not to tell poeple. 

This is me letting you know. 

This is me being proud of what I made, and being in awe of Preye Onita, Celi’s product designer, and Goodness Urama, Celi’s creative front-end developer, who brought Celi to life on your device.

Thank you for your continued attention.