Best Email Marketing Service Providers

Forrester just released their Email Service Provider report for Q4 (Forrester Wave™). The report is a comprehensive evaluation of 15 top-tier vendors, and analyzes products and services across over 70+ criteria and three dimensions, including “Current Offering,” “Strategy,” and “Market Presence.”

The leaders of the pack with robust and highly-integrated solutions were ExactTarget and Responsys. Liberty Interactive Marketing has been a long-time user and advocate for ExactTarget given a customers complex needs with regard to segmentation, dynamic content, and integrating with other marketing channels like social and mobile.

While clearly the 70+ points of criteria knocked out a lot of smaller solutions like Campaign Monitor and Blue Sky Factory, it doesn’t mean medium-sized businesses should discount these. Before selecting an appropriate email service provider, sit down and determine what your needs are, from customer database integration to segmentation. What assets are you working with and what shape are they in?

And if you thought email was a passe marketing tactic for 2010 and beyond, you’ll be surprised to know that 68% of those surveyed by Forrester said that they anticipate that email marketing’s effectiveness will increase in the next three years.

The main focus for marketers will be to understand who their customers are and how to market to them personally and with relevance.

To stay ahead of the pack or just catch up I highly recommend downloading this email marketing report from Forrester compliments of ExactTarget.

9 Comments

  1. Thanks for mentioning Blue Sky Factory (and our friends at Campaign Monitor) in your post. I realize that you are an Exact Target advocate, so it means even more to us that you’d take the time to recognize the “smaller solutions.”

    While I think that Forrester is an excellent resource, I actually think they sometimes do the industry a disservice by only including Email Service Providers (ESPs) over a certain size. Part of their criteria (I’m pretty sure) is revenue. If you are under a certain run rate, you won’t even be reviewed. That’s really unfortunate. Clearly I am biased in this regard, but revenue is not necessarily a good indicator of “good ESP.” In fact, sometimes it’s just the opposite.

    Ok. My mini-rant is over. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this…

    DJ Waldow
    Director of Community, Blue Sky Factory
    @djwaldow

  2. DJ – I absolutely agree with you and your comment has inspired me to write a follow up post on email service providers as a whole. I’ll keep you posted. Thanks for your comment.

  3. That’s sounds great. Can’t wait to read the follow up post. How will I know when it’s live? Twitter? Email? Hook me up!

    DJ Waldow
    Director of Community, Blue Sky Factory
    @djwaldow

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