RealTime IT News

Commtouch Jumps Into E-Mail Marketing

Commtouch, a provider of outsourced free e-mail services, on Friday made its foray into the e-mail marketing space.

The new service, which Commtouch will integrate into the Web product it provides clients, will launch with ten customers, including eVite, InfoBeat, InternetWire, The Motley Fool, MyPoints, Petopia, Red Herring, Salon.com, Smart Age and ZDNet.

The move reflects Commtouch's understanding that permission-based e-mail marketing should be a part of any e-mail product offering. Since it has an installed base of 300 clients, Commtouch already has a head start in marketing these services. The new service also increases the "stickiness" of the old, bringing users back to the e-mail application so they can read the marketing messages.

"By enabling our partners to build deeper relationships with their customers, Commtouch delivers even more value and revenues to each email box hosted," said Commtouch vice president of marketing and e-commerce, Rip Gerber.

"Nothing is stickier online than an email message you've asked to receive."

But this is a new area of expertise for the company, and not an area that Commtouch has tackled in the past. Technology is one thing, direct marketing another. Whether it'll be successful likely depends on the company's ability to attract quality direct marketing talent.