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BoldFish’s Opt-In E-Mail Delivery System ~ ‘Oh My That’s Fast!’

Written By: P. Hayes
Published On: September 22 2000

BoldFish’s Opt-In E-Mail Delivery System ~ 'Oh My That's Fast!'
P. Hayes -September 22, 2000

Product Background

BoldFish is the first company to tackle the e-mail problem on an Internet scale and at speeds, which will support even the largest of electronic mailing and distribution sites. The company has developed a number of advanced technologies for delivering, managing, personalizing, and commerce-enabling vast numbers of e-mail messages.

BoldFish is an extremely advanced system that allows organizations to e-mail-enable their database for high volume outbound e-mail campaigns. BoldFish integrates seamlessly with an organization's web site, database, and existing IT infrastructure to provide enterprise-class capabilities for reaching customers in a responsive, personal way. Whether sending out e-mail newsletters, promotions, product announcements, stock alerts or news releases, BoldFish will deliver the message faster than any other opt-in mail delivery system on the market today.

Product Strategy and Trajectory

BoldFish has recognized the shift in Internet marketing from the typical banner on a web page to 'opt-in e-mail' marketing, which is cheaper, and tends to reach more individuals. The number of Internet enabled mailboxes will reach approximately 700 Million before the end of 2001. This coupled with another 500 Million wireless access users with the ability to reach their mailboxes remotely, makes e-mail marketing the wave of the future.

BoldFish has placed itself in the forefront of opt-in e-mail delivery systems. Technology Evaluation's testing of the product found it to be a reasonably complex installation and configuration, however once properly configured the system is truly impressive. The user interface is made available through a web browser and with very minimal training even an administrative assistant could handle daily mailings due to an easily navigable and well thought out interface.

One of the issues concerning high-speed delivery e-mail systems is the fear of 'spam machines'. BoldFish's licensing program is tied to an expiration date, which enforces a rigid spam policy which limits any potential abuse, by clients.

BoldFish's Anti-Spam Policy (Source: BoldFish)

BoldFish, Inc. is aware of our responsibilities as a good Internet citizen and are dedicated to protecting the privacy rights of other Internet citizens. We are violently against the sending of unsolicited e-mail (Spam) and have made every effort within our power to discourage and prohibit the sending of Spam.

BoldFish does not allow anyone to use their products or services for the purpose of sending Spam. BoldFish has and will continue to refuse business from known spammers. If a current BoldFish customer uses BoldFish products or services for the purposes of spamming anyone, their product license and/or service contract will be voided.

BoldFish is sensitive to the privacy of each of the subscribers on the lists that BoldFish hosts and will not make their name, address, or any other information that they have provided the company available to anyone without the subscriber's express permission. BoldFish requires that each message sent out include an easy way for the subscriber to remove themselves from the list and in cases where the subscriber cannot remove themselves from the list for whatever reason, BoldFish support staff will help them remove themselves from the list.

Product Strengths

  • Highly personalized message creation

  • Unparalleled high-speed delivery - 500,000 mail merged messages per hour

  • Complete recovery - Even if there is a power outage the system will pick up exactly where it left off

  • Efficient management of bounced e-mail, with automatic retry for soft bounces and removal of addresses for hard bounces

  • Click-through offers to specific locations on a Web site draw customers to track response rates of the campaign

  • Seamless integration with web site, shopping carts, e-commerce systems and databases to let customers complete transactions immediately.

  • Detailed campaign reports track e-mail delivered, opened, bounced and unsubscribed for each campaign sent.

  • Click-through tracking lets marketers identify and measure each recipient click for particular offer links (URL).

Product Challenges

  • Name Recognition - BoldFish must make more strides to develop brand awareness. Advertising dollars must be spent to achieve this end.

  • Complex Installation - With a system this powerful, one would expect a reasonably complex configuration, however we believe scripting could be implemented to enhance ease of configuration.

  • Market Issues - The marketing arena is only now fully beginning to understand what opt-in-e-mail is about. Selling the solution may be rocky at first but should break out upon increased demand.

BOTTOM LINE

Vendor Recommendations

  • Develop an Aggressive Marketing campaign to not only increase brand awareness, but also to educate consumers.

  • Enhance the installation and configuration of the software with customized installs based on Operating System and Database

User Recommendations

We found the BoldFish product to be 'exactly as advertised'. The product is indeed robust, with both NT and Unix support, and extremely fast when given the recommended hardware and a fast processing MTA (message transfer agent), we recommend a Sendmail, Inc. sendmail MTA for this process. We also found support for multiple databases including Sybase and SQL and found that the product worked well from a data gathering perspective. With BoldFish there is no need to redesign your client database.

BoldFish consultants were professional, knowledgeable and extremely helpful during our installation and configuration and have provided top-notch technical answers when needed. We highly recommend placing BoldFish on the 'short list' of any opt-in e-mail delivery system technology decision.

 
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