ESP vs SMTP Provider


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In this report, we have tried to compare an enterprise level Email Service Provider with a SMTP provider. This document explains the difference between both the service providers and lists their respective merits and demerits.

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ESP vs SMTP Provider

  1. 1. ESP vs SMTPP
  2. 2. What is the difference?Before we begin to compare full service ESPs with SMTP providers, we must first address what an ESPand a SMTP provider is:SMTP Provider: SMTP is an acronym for Simple Mail Transfer Protocol, which is a standard for sendingemails over Internet or an IP Network. Outbound SMTP servers are called MTA (Mail Transfer Agent).An SMTP Provider; simply put is a provider of an MTA that can be used for sending bulk emails.SMTP providers only provide basic back end infrastructure that has to be accessed through means ofcodes called API. These come with basic or no User Interface. These are recommended for companieswho have invested in data warehousing and built their in-house email marketing software withanalytics and reporting capabilities.ESP: An Email Marketing Service Provider, generally known as ESP, provide an all in one solution forcampaign management, subscriber management, segmentation, targeting, analysis, reporting andmuch more including the SMTP service for email delivery.ESPs again operate on different models, some offer shared DIY options suitable for small and mediumbusinesses, where as other offer dedicated and much more powerful and tailor-made solutions forlarge and scalable enterprises.
  3. 3. Service Provider Matrix International Providers Strong Low for Enterprises What is the level of your company’s internal • Dedicated infrastructure • Dedicated account management and support. International Providers for • Seamless integration options technical resource? • Full support for Strategy and Data small businessesCurrent Offering management. • Extensive Features for automation • Shared infrastructure (in most cases) and optimization of campaigns. • Limited or insufficient ISP relations • Little or no integration options. • Limited online support SMTP Providers • DIY model • Standard reports and features • Basic infrastructure • Limited or no ISP relations • Limited Features • Require advanced technical knowledge and expertise High • Require investment substantialWeak investment in technology Less How complicated are your email marketing needs More Weak Strategy Strong What type of Email Service Provider works best for you?
  4. 4. ComparisonCapability / Features SMTP Provider Kenscio Infrastructure setup Need a technical team to setup No Technical knowledge required Business Model SMTP Server Provider Full Service ESP CRM Capabilities Integration required with external Built in advanced CRM capabilities CRM systemWYSIWG message editor Not Available with all providers Available with built in content store and code visual with syntax highlighting Email Templates Not Available Extremely powerful & Flexible templates with advanced workflow managementSubscriber Management Not Available Opt-in, double opt-in, subscription and customer life cycle management options
  5. 5. ComparisonCapability / Features SMTP Provider Kenscio Analytics Not built in Build in advanced Analytics Engine IP Reputation IPs often get blocked by major ISPs Excellent reputation for relaying spam. SPF DIY in most of the cases Automatic Automatic DKIM Automatic Automatic Open Tracking Not available in all cases Available and can be categorized Click Tracking Not available in all cases Available and can be categorized
  6. 6. ESP ComparisonCapability / Features SMTP Provider KenscioResponse Management & Only through API Possible through both API and UI Campaign automation Personalization and Basic Personalization Personalization and Individualization Individualization Support Email / chat Dedicated support options with defined Escalation Matrix and SLA Consulting & Strategy None Includes Email marketing audit, Email marketing optimization, lead generation, Creative analysis and optimization and much more. ROI tracking Not Available Available Re-targeting Needs to be setup externally Built in
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