E-mail marketing technology firm GotMarketing is offering its services through a host of new distribution partners, including Yahoo!,
Network Commerce and Smart Online, as efforts to serve small business advertisers heat up.
Campbell, Calif.-based GotMarketing’s Campaigner technology, which allows partners to offer self-service e-mail marketing tools to advertisers, is intended to attract and serve smaller advertisers.
For a monthly fee — which limits the number of e-mails they can send — a small business can get a campaign off the ground using little more than a credit card, a house list, and the system’s co-branded templates. (GotMarketing also offers a way for advertisers to acquire prospects, which involves placing a link on advertisers’ Web pages, which feeds subscribers to the system.)
Most clients pay about $40 a month, which entitles them to about 25,000 HTML or text-based e-mail messages and detailed list segmentation and reporting. GotMarketing and its distribution partners split the revenue.
For publishers, such agreements represent a way to beef up their existing small business services. Yahoo!, for instance, will offer Campaigner services to Yahoo! Store merchants and users of Yahoo! Small Business and Website Services.
Smart Online, which also offers small business tools on the Web, will roll Campaigner into its own service, and would make it available to syndication partners, which include large global companies like AIG
and Cable & Wireless.
Network Commerce, meanwhile, will offer the service under its FreeMerchant.com site, which offers an e-commerce platform to small businesses.
“These partners … already had a number of small business customers, and were already delivering complementary services to them, but they see e-mail as a strategic value-added offering for themselves,” said GotMarketing president and chief executive Lynda Partner. “The highest interest [in GotMarketing’s product] is coming from organizations that already had large constituents of small and medium business customers … who were demanding e-mail services.”
At the same time, the self-service system could help publishers woo smaller advertisers that wouldn’t usually warrant the full attention of an account executive — who would tend to focus on landing large clients.
That sort of thinking is becoming more in vogue as Web plays seek to expand their revenue amid one of the toughest climates for advertising in decades. With national brands hacking away at marketing budgets, sites are considering new ways to bring in ad dollars, and increasingly, are turning to smaller advertisers.
Earlier this month, weather.com rolled out a similar program in conjunction with technology provider Amazing Media. That effort put a do-it-yourself rich media banner system in place on weather.com, which, like the GotMarketing system, operates largely without the intervention of ad sales teams — who, in turn, can concentrate on larger clients.
Meanwhile, such efforts broaden the online marketing capabilities of small businesses — which typically lack large internal IT or marketing departments, as well as the budgets to pay large outside vendors.
“There wasn’t an awful lot available for small businesses,” Partner said. “E-mail marketing and other marketing automation technology has existed for quite a while … but it has always been more of a technology used by full-service organizations that would do the work for you. That was really great for enterprises with large budgets … but not really suited for small and medium-sized businesses that don’t have the time or budget.”
Added Tom Furr, senior vice president of business development at Smart Online: “Our customers have been asking for affordable tools that will help them be successful online. To meet those requests, we’ve selected GotMarketing’s Campaigner because it … [offers] a full range of tools that automate and manage e-mail marketing campaigns of any size or style.”