RealTime IT News

InfoBeat Launches Incentive-Based Mall

Denver-based e-mail publisher InfoBeat Inc., in association with Amazon.com, Egghead.com, and others, launched InfoBeat MarketPlace, an incentive-based online mall.

To drive traffic, shoppers will receive free unlimited access to e-mail-based cartoons, columnists, and crosswords.

InfoBeat MarketPlace is available through the company's main Web site. Traffic to the site will also be driven via links embedded in the three million e-mail messages that InfoBeat delivers to its subscribers each day.

Other initial vendors are @Backup, Surplusdirect.com, Surplusauction.com, netMarket, The Wall Street Journal and Thunderbeam.com.

InfoBeat said subscribers who patronize these vendors will have their choice of free Bonus Products, which are HTML versions of popular content unavailable elsewhere via e-mail. The Bonus Products include Classic Dilbert, Peanuts featuring "This Day in History," Cathy and Doonesbury cartoons, Gene Siskel's Flicks Picks, Dave Barry columns and daily crossword puzzles.

"InfoBeat MarketPlace is a way to leverage our 2.6 million subscription base and earn revenues from vendors who recognize the value of reaching out to this rapidly growing audience," said John Funk, InfoBeat chairman and founder. "What's different about this incentive program is that InfoBeat is rewarding its users for transacting with its retail partners while our retail partners will reap the benefits of increased sales and repeat business."

As an introductory offer, InfoBeat subscribers can sign up to receive two weeks of Bonus Products without making a purchase. After that, Bonus Products will only be available to those who buy products through InfoBeat MarketPlace.

InfoBeat said it is rolling out a number of new ventures along with its e- commerce site. The company announced the formation of InfoBeat Express, an e-mail communication solution for publishers and other businesses wishing to deliver targeted content to their customers.

Another initiative, InfoBeat Select, makes premium content available to InfoBeat subscribers from Time Inc. New Media, Red Herring, IDG and other publishers.

Privately held InfoBeat, based in Denver, was founded as Mercury Mail in 1995, and now claims to be the largest e-mail publisher on the Internet.