Pay-Per-Click ESP Debuts
By Ken Magill
In what is believed to be the first of its kind, an email service provider has launched that charges senders only for messages that get clicked.
Dubbed Pay Per Visit Email, the service is aimed at senders with lists of up to a million addresses, according to David Chitester, CEO and founder of the firm.
He said he founded the company as the result of email-related frustration he encountered with another start-up he founded: Spanish social media concern The Questamente Network.
“Within the first year, we had 700,000 registered users,” Chitester said. “I found out there was no cost-effective way for me to email these guys. We tried three different email services and none of them worked. One was way too expensive for 700,000 emails a month for a social network. One wouldn’t allow us to send that many. We had to send a few at a time. It would have taken a year to get to 700,000. Another one really never gave us a good idea what it was going to cost.”
He didn’t name the ESPs he attempted to work with.
Chitester said his company’s pricing is based on click-through rate. If the sender’s click-through rate is between 3 percent and 10 percent, it will cost the sender 10 cents per click, he said.
Higher click rates result in lower charges and lower click rates result in higher charges, he added.
Click rates of between 1 percent and 3 percent will cost the sender 25 cents a click, said Chitester.
He added his firm is using an established email technology provider to send its messages, but declined to say which provider.
“We’re using somebody else’s system. They don’t want to be known. We built the software around it,” he said.
When it was pointed out that he is relying heavily on clients’ creative skills and email list hygiene, Chitester said: “That is true. We are taking a risk no one else was willing to take.”
To prevent spammers from using Pay Per Visit, someone at the company must approve each campaign before it goes out, he said.
In order to get the word out, Chitester said he’s got an internal outbound call center and he’s teamed up with Gold Coast Partners to do some acquisition efforts.
Chitester said when Pay Per Visit launched on April 13, someone registered, uploaded their campaign, email list and credit card information and sent emails to 10,000 names.
“The whole idea is for this to be self service,” said Chitester. “This was a client who we had no contact with, who went online, signed up, created an email, put a credit card in and sent 10,000 emails out and never talked to anyone at the company.”