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Email that talks: Would you like that in your in-box?

Last monthI had the pleasure of lunching with Lisa Jones, the founder of Eyemail is a different kind of email marketing company not just because of Lisa but because of the way the application works. As Lisa advertises, “ours can be the only message in your in box that actually talks to you.” OK now she had my attention.

I’d seen Hello World before and was familiar with the idea of sending email messages with embedded videos as a way to stand out and personalize your greetings. So with this as my baseline, I invited her to explain the difference. For those of you who are not technologically savvy there are some details that will bore you but the big difference is that with eyemail the user doesn’t have to do anything — not even click a link — to hear the message.

What this means is that the second your message hits the recipient’s box, it begins playing, assuming they are at their desk. If you sent the message after hours (something I wouldn’t recommend) the talking greeting would welcome them along with their coffee when they logged in the next morning.

Unlike Hello World, the videos are professionally produced and framed like PowerPoint on steroids. The pure quality of the production is what has attracted some Fortune 100 clients already who are using it for internal as well as external communications. So if you haven’t already seen an eyemail message, there may soon be on in your future.

While the applications of the product are interesting and I’m certain they have a place, I’m just not sure that I would respond warmly to an audio greeting in my in-box along with the other 100+ messages I receive each day. As Lisa explains it, the message will keep talking until the user actually does something, which is certain to increase open rates and click-throughs but might infuriate some. I think we’ll have to wait and call this one after we receive our first eyemail message. If you’ve received one already, please let me know what you think.

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