Message Systems Launches Transactional Email Solution
By Ken Magill
Email infrastructure provider Message Systems last week launched SparkPost, a transactional email solution aimed at developers.
According to Message Systems, SparkPost comes with a comprehensive set of application program interfaces, or APIs—applications that allow programs to interact—that allow developers to easily integrate SparkPost into their systems.
Transactional emails are—among other things—receipts, notifications, reminders and updates. As a result, they are often sent by IT rather than by marketing.
The launch of SparkPost—a cloud-based offering—puts Message Systems in direct competition with transactional-email-solution providers SendGrid and MailChimp’s Mandrill.
According to John Caldwell, president of email technology consultancy Red Pill Email, SparkPost offers more scalability, or growth support, than its two main competitors.
“Message Systems solves the scalability issue that SendGrid and Mandrill don’t address, both from a platform and service perspective,” he said.
“Companies that would use this service would be a Pinterest, or a Hoovers or a Wedding.com,” said Steve Dille, senior vice president and chief marketing officer of Message Systems. “We’re not going after the marketing part [of prospects’ businesses] we’re going after the infrastructure part and the transactional part where developers are building you into an application.
“If you look at a lot of companies, they use one vendor for marketing [emails] and another for transactional,” Dille added. “That’s a very common scenario. … We’re a great solution because of the simple API access that we bring to bear lets you connect to your transactional system very easily and get those emails sent… and you’re getting service from a company that is enterprise class.”
SparkPost customers also have access to Message Systems’ Adaptive Email Network, a system it claims automatically analyzes deliverability rules and bounce codes from the various inbox providers and adjusts accordingly.
Message Systems claims it accounts for about 20 percent of the world’s permission based email at 2.5 trillion messages annually.
As a result, according to Message Systems, it can automatically make sending adjustments based on feedback from email inbox providers.
Deliverability is particularly important for transactional messages such as receipts, order confirmations and service notices.
Email messages can bounce for a number of reasons and not necessarily because the address is bad. Message Systems’ Adaptive Email Network automatically reads and processes bounces properly, according to Dille.
The system also automatically adjusts to other rules imposed on senders by ISPs, he said.
For example, different ISPs have different rules on how fast they’ll accept messages and how many simultaneous connections the sender can have, said Dille.
“There’s a lot of complexity in knowing how to get email through an ISP,” he said in a September interview. “We have a lot of [data] access to understand what’s really going on out there. We put all of this information together in the Adaptive Email Network that will enable our customers to comply with all of these ISP sending rules and bounce classifications.”