Silverpop acquires Vtrenz

May 9th, 2007 by Roy Russo

Several people have emailed me about my thoughts on the Silverpop acquisition of Vtrenz (press release), so I felt compelled to write this blog entry. Overall, this is a snoozer of a headline… average player merges with average player that couldn’t quite make it on its own. Allow me to sleep through this one.

Context: I should say at this time, that both Tom (CoFounder, LoopFuse) and I, once worked at Silverpop many moons ago.

The interesting thing about this acquisition is not that an email marketing company buys a demand generation solution. What it shows is that email marketing companies are eager to differentiate themselves. Although being able to send out mass emails is impressive, as a communication method it provides little-to-no value for the sophisticated marketer wishing to implement a closed-loop solution, increase efficiency in his sales and marketing organization, and qualify potential leads. Possibly the most compelling case for differentiation is the email marketing industry itself. It is crowded by an enormous number of companies offering the same services, while undercutting each other for 1/100th-of-a-penny-per-email cheaper than the other. In essence, its a race to the bottom. How long will that last?

Judging by the great appeal of our hosted and commercially licensed (OEM) solution, I can safely say there are many email marketers that are following this line of thinking. Its a natural progression for email marketing companies to grow in to a full marketing and sales solution. Clearly, being an open source solution affords us some luxuries that our competitors cannot benefit from. For the average email marketing company, being able to take our software, re-brand it, and have full training and support services from our staff is a win-win. They benefit from instant differentiation with a low-cost and full-featured demand generation solution, backed by proven 24/7 support services.

I applaud Silverpop for thinking forward, but I’m still sleeping through the news. ;-)

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