Up, any feedback would be much appreciated.
If it's not overflowing, filled with spam, and it's easy to organize, then this concept may not be your cup of tea. Or maybe it will be.
Anyway, my business partner and I are at a disagreement right now, here's why:
We're building a site/app/platform that allows people to receive their direct mail online instead of physically (this means no more "junk mail" or at least a noticeably lesser amount). There is NO "scanning" required on neither the users or advertisers side, we DON'T re-direct the mail, or anything of that nature. Obviously the success of this would strangle the Postal Service. Now since you have some context, time to get to the point.
A lot of people dislike/hate email, everyone has their own reasons why but most of them I've found, revolve around:
1. Just about anyone can invite themselves into your inbox, it's not "personal" and important messages are overrun by less important messages
2. It takes way too much time to sift through unimportant messages to find the ones that are important (especially if you're someone who receives a lot of email period)
3. Generally email from everyone, advertisers, businesses, subscriptions, are piled into the Inbox and have to be manually organized (again, more time consumption)
So I thought of a messaging system that is based off of real home addresses (like letters) instead of "email addresses", except it's online. So the only way someone can contact/message you is if they have your real address.
What are the benefits of this? Let's see:
1. Personal - You don't give your real address out to random strangers do you? Of course not, which makes this concept all the more special, because you only receive mail from people who are REALLY important.
2. Control - Even if some creep did manage to get your address (which for 99.9% of people who would be using this service is highly unlikely), you can see both their name and confirmed return address, and you can decide weather or not that person can send you mail.
3. Convenience - Both your direct mail/advertising mail and personal letters/mail are separated, meaning that any subscriptions/catalog's/coupons are placed in a direct mail category and no longer physically show up at your home, and the only letters/messages in your box is from important people/people you want to hear from.
With the concept above^ direct mail advertisers have to be accepted on the back-end which means any spam is automatically filtered out, so this means no spam + no physical advertising mail anymore. It also means that sending messages/letters are personal, so your inbox is no longer overflowing with messages from people you don't know, or people who aren't important that you don't care about.
If you put the two together, you basically have the Postal Service online, the only thing lacking would be physical packages. However, we would allow people to handle both their messages/letters + direct mail online, on one platform. No spam, no unimportant messages, you can block people from messaging you, everything is automatically organized, and it's a lot more personal. People also don't change home addresses as often as they do email addresses, and if they did change it, our messaging system would update/notify you.
So the part we disagree at is that he doesn't think we should add in the personal letters/messaging part.
His argument summarized:
"There already is many ways to communicate with each other, I'm afraid all we are doing is creating a type of social networking with a messaging system, basically just another e-mail account ..."
My argument summarized:
Many people are tired of juggling through multiple social networks and overflowing email accounts just to communicate with important people. Online messaging has not yet been personalized and it would make sense for the "Official Online Mailbox" to replicate what the Postal Service does, but online, and in an obviously efficient and convenient manner.
Even further summarized:
I think we should become the new Postal Service in the long haul, except mostly online of course (as that's where the future is heading anyway), he thinks we should just be direct/advertising mail online.
So my question is, which concept would you guys prefer/are you more interested in? Just getting your physical advertising mail online, or a whole new online postal mail revolution?
Up, any feedback would be much appreciated.
gmail does an amazing job of identifying and containing spam. I push our compan(ies) emails through POP3, through gMail, and really don't have much of an issue with hundreds of emails that I receive daily. I also utilize gMail labels to tag emails, flag emails, and star emails. Non-issue for us, and I am a high volume email user compared to most.
Because I can...
I agree with Vig. Gmail has allowed me to take control of email very effectively.
The only thing I would add is that I have a second gmail account that I give out to newsletters etc. This one I don't check as often my main one, that adds an entire layer of tidiness to my main inbox.
I'd vote thumbs down to having an email tied to my physical address, I don't think people will adapt now that email is so entrenched. Keep in mind I didn't think Twitter or Facebook would ever take off either.
I'm not criticizing in any way but I'm honestly confused as to what you're offering. tOne of your first lines "We're building a site/app/platform that allows people to receive their direct mail online instead of physically" refers to actual physical mail then the next thing you talk about how people hate email and how difficult it is to organize. Is this a service that will somehow organize people's email inboxes? Is this a service that will somehow take someones mail at an "address" and at the "address" the mail will be sorted into specific categories to be recieved online? But then how would it be online without being scanned? And then you talk about social networking and online messenging....maybeits just me but it went right over my head.
In point, I'mjust confused as to how the goal goes from
Thanks for the feedback guys!
It's all automated. I set the rule 1x and gMail does the rest. I spend zero time on it.
Because I can...
no. gMail has solved the problem.
Another thing about it is I have several accounts that then all hit the same "inbox" so it
- separates and quarantines spam
- labels and prioritizes
There's nothing else I need it to do. It does everything I need. Free. (well, I pay for an upgraded account, as it also has an archive of several years of mail that I can search in a second. I could retrieve in 1 second something you sent me 4 years ago.)
Because I can...
This idea can only work when physical mail boxes are abolished by law.
You're focusing too much on the customer, whereas you should think through the whole distribution chain.
As long as there are physical mail boxes, there will be direct mail.
So does anyone know of a good company that manages an the entire migration of email and web over to the google apps suite? I have tried it myself and gave up. I would rather just pay someone to do that.
So, I'm not sure if you read the post wrong or what. But thanks anyway?
Gold, the whole idea behind direct mail is that people will read it not because they want to, but because they can't avoid it when opening their mail box and sifting through ordinary mail.The same idea behind advertisement on tv, radio, etc. That is the reason why tv channels, radio channels and magazines with 100 % advertisements don't exist.
Your idea of an alternative for direct mail somewhere in the cloud presupposes that anyone would voluntarily open a mail box that he knows is full of commercial messages.
That is like offering a Youtube channel with 100 % commercials. It would only appeal to producers of commercials.
In other words, your business model has no value for the end user and therefore no value for the producer of the mail.
Those people don't want to receive any direct mail, that's fine, and they can use our site/app to receive no direct mail/less direct mail.
On the other hand, direct mail still boasts around a 3% response rate yearly, and that's not including who purchased something because they seen it in a catalog, or who used coupons, etc.
So yes, if there is quality direct mail/legitimate offers, we presuppose that someone would open a mailbox up knowing that it is full off commercial messages.
Well, it isn't a YouTube channel and that would be dumb, but my point still stands, that it would be much more appealing with what I said above, which is what we offer.
Coupons + legitimate offers + these offers/coupons/ads are only what the user is interested in + no more physical direct mail (don't have to check mailbox at all or so often) + quicker/easier responses to offers = no value to the user?
Hmmm, I have to repeat myself and say that I don't agree with that, and that's not what I've heard as far as feedback goes from successful entrepreneurs, and people who said they would use this service.
People don't hate advertisements, they hate when advertisements are shoved down their throats and forcibly pushed in their faces.
Could you give me a one liner about what your service does? I've read the posts multiple times, but to be honest, I don't really get it. Also the fact that you need to explain a lot of it to other members/potential users might be a hint that it's too complicated.
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