An Open RFP to ESPs -- I want “ESPN”
We are busy analyzing the feature sets of numerous ESPs (E-mail Service Providers) to decide not only who gets our business, but how we will best serve our loyal e-newsletter readers and advertisers into next year and beyond.
The job of recommending and ultimately being part of a team that selects a vendor is quite a challenge, while at the same time it’s a tremendous learning process.
Let’s go beyond the basics here: Deliverability, including bounce-management and working with major ISPs, must remain the No. 1 priority of any vendor. However, I’m looking for a tool that not only delivers e-mail, but specifically is designed for e-mail newsletters... sort of like an “ESPN” (E-mail Service Provider for Newsletters).
Without giving away every detail, here are just a few requirements anyone publishing an e-newsletter should require:
• The ability to separate click activity for advertisers versus clicks that come from links to editorial. If you still are reporting to your advertisers average click-thru rates based on total click activity from the entire newsletter, stop!
• The ability to group recipients into subsets while not requiring you to message to them separately. Your advertisers and prospects want to receive your e-newsletters on a regular basis, but you should report open rate and click activity for your opt-in subscribers completely separate from your advertisers and prospects.
• E-mail report functionality so no one on your team has to “log-in” to access activity reports and, in turn, send those reports to advertisers.
There are, of course, other requirements like mobile delivery, lead integration and allowing for requalification of existing, but non-active subscribers, but I’d love to hear any of your suggestions and maybe even from some ESPs themselves.