Naviant Taps MindArrow for Rich Media

Database marketing Naviant is stepping up its rich media e-mail capabilities, through a new deal with MindArrow Systems.

Financial terms were not disclosed of the agreement, which will see Aliso Viejo, Calif.-based MindArrow providing its RadicalMail technology for use in conjunction with Naviant’s products.

MindArrow acquired the technology a year ago in the fire sale of now-defunct rival Radical Communication, which was at the time the industry’s oldest and best-known rich media e-mail player.

Naviant, which rents opt-in e-mail lists and handles outsourced product registration and e-mail append, said it would add RadicalMail services to its own product offerings, thereby enabling clients to launch campaigns that use streaming audio, video, and transactional capabilities.

In other words, recipients could complete a product purchase within an e-mail — reducing the time needed to click through to a Web site, ideally decreasing consumer abandonment.

“Naviant is focused on giving its customers best-of-breed technologies,” said Naviant Chief Exeutive Michael Brauser. “MindArrow’s RadicalMail technology is widely regarded as the industry standard in enhanced electronic messaging. With hundreds of rich media campaigns deployed to date, they have successfully built a scalable and reliable platform for delivering audio, video and commerce directly into the e-mail inbox.”

In addition to rich media and transactional capabilities, the technology also will add more advanced consumer tracking to Naviant’s e-mail system.

The news continues moves by Naviant, which serves clients including AT&T , Circuit City and Microsoft , to establish itself as a leading player in combined on- and offline data and direct marketing services.

Earlier this month, the company acquired SweepsClub, a loyalty marketer that operates on a performance-based pricing model. In March, Naviant snapped up direct mail firm Data One Marketing, which provides mail processing and data clearinghouse services.

Late last year, the company merged with eDirect, which had rivaled Naviant’s e-mail marketing and list rental practice.

Increasingly, many believe direct marketing firms will find it advantageous to have a foothold in both the traditional and Internet realms. Earlier this year, research outfit Gartner Inc. found that e-mail marketing had eaten slowly into direct mailers’ profits — a trend that’s expected to continue.

Meanwhile, industry groups like the Direct Marketing Association are actively promoting best practices for e-mail marketing among their membership. In February, the DMA and its Association for Interactive Marketing subsidiary released privacy and data-collection guidelines designed to improve and protect the fledgling industry.

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