ALC, MatchLogic Team Up on 500,000 Opt-In E-Database

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American List Counsel Inc. and online ad targeting firm MatchLogic Inc. are set to introduce DeliverE, an e-mail marketing service complete with what they say is a fresh opt-in e-mail database of 500,000 consumers. The unveiling will happen at this week's Direct Marketing Association's Net.Marketing conference in Miami.


American List Counsel, Princeton, NJ, is list manager of DeliverE.


MatchLogic, Louisville, CO, began building the DeliverE database using a series of online sweepstakes in June. It is growing by 10,000 to 20,000 e-mail addresses a day, according to MatchLogic.


To enter a DeliverE sweepstakes, consumers must supply their e-mail addresses along with demographic, lifestyle and purchase-intention information on an 18-part initial market-research survey at the MatchLogic Grand Gobosh Web site at www.grandgobosh.com. Participants are given different surveys on subsequent visits.


"This is the first database on the Web that I would say really takes data integrity into account," said Eric Zilling, vice president of interactive media at ALC. "They [MatchLogic] understand that you can't ask questions significantly differently and drop people into the same bucket without affecting performance."


MatchLogic also has designed the database to guard against wearing out participants, said product manager Mark Glasco.


"One of the things that's critical is that [because of the speed of e-mail], we've reduced the typical life cycle of a direct marketing campaign from several months to less than a week, so e-mail fatigue is a primary concern," Glasco said.


As a result, whenever participants receive e-mail offers, they will be invited to give feedback and update their information, Glasco said, adding that MatchLogic will enhance the DeliverE database with "nonclient-specific response data" to determine who responds to certain types of offers.


"As more mailers use this database, it gets smarter," Zilling said. "It's not like they're putting this database out on the market and pounding the heck out of it."


As for when nonresponders get removed from specific types of offers or from the DeliverE database altogether, Glasco said, "We're working on those algorithms right now."


Test offers to the DeliverE database have garnered click-through rates (the rate at which recipients click through the e-mail offer to a designated Web page) of 20 percent to 30 percent, Glasco said. Conversion rates have been as high as 15 percent.


Among DeliverE's clients are Citibank and magazine publishers Ziff Davis and Rodale Press. Representatives of the three companies did not return calls for comment.


MatchLogic plans to capitalize on new parent company Excite Inc.'s partnerships to grow the DeliverE database to 5.5 million e-mail addresses by year's end, Glasco said. He declined to detail any plans, other than to say that they will be opt-in efforts stemming from customer satisfaction surveys, product registration and more sweepstakes.


"I can't really talk about it because we are at the beginning stages of activating the Excite partnerships," he said.


In January, Excite announced that it had signed an agreement to acquire MatchLogic for 3.2 million shares of Excite stock, valued at $89 million. A statement released by the two companies cited Excite's desire to be "at the forefront of a direct marketing boom on the Web" as a reason for the purchase. Among Excite's strategic partners are America Online, Intuit Inc., the Tribune Co. and Cendant Corp. (formerly CUC International).


Excite's flagship brands are its search engines, Excite at www.excite.com and WebCrawler at www.webcrawler.com.
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