Atlanta, GA

May 30, 2007

MailChimp, the friendliest full-function email marketing service for small business, announces integration with Return Path’s Sender Score Monitoring system, giving MailChimp users access to rigorous deliverability testing previously only available to large companies. MailChimp’s new “Inbox Inspector” gives MailChimp users the ability to preview campaigns with the click of a button, displaying a screenshot of how each email campaign will appear across seventeen email clients, such as AOL, Outlook 2007, Lotus Notes, and the most popular Webmail services, like Yahoo!, Gmail, Hotmail and more. In addition, MailChimp’s integration with Return Path tests each newsletter for inbox delivery, through all the major spam filters and corporate email firewalls.

“We are pleased to see our partner, MailChimp, meet the needs of smaller mailers by providing simple access to the rendering and spam filter testing functionality Return Path offers,” says George Bilbrey, vice president and general manager of Delivery Assurance Solutions at Return Path.

“It is unbelievably easy to test email marketing campaigns now. In the past, delivery of email newsletters was hit-or miss - you’d design an email newsletter, click send, then pray that it would look right and not get caught in spam filters,” according to Ben Chestnut, co-founder and partner at the Rocket Science Group, developers of MailChimp. “There was too much mystery about how to get emails delivered. Now, thanks to Return Path’s API, small businesses can click one button in MailChimp to test each campaign before sending to their lists and correct any problems identified.”

Testing email campaigns used to take lots of time for customers, so the MailChimp guys fixed this by integrating Return Path’s superior deliverability tools. Without these tools, customers would need a budget to staff and setup dedicated testing computers in their office, install multiple operating systems and email applications, and sign up for all the different ISPs like Comcast, Earthlink, AOL, etc. For smaller organizations, the cost of building and maintaining this array of test environments is not practical.

“MailChimp is all about making email marketing easy and fun. Testing took all the fun out, so we created the Inbox Inspector. One click, done,” adds Ben Chestnut.

Some competing email marketing providers set up really simple keyword scanners, whereby they just scan the test email for “spammy” keywords and phrases, but that gives people false hope. Real-world spam filters are far more complex, evaluating against many criteria, like sloppy HTML code, specific combinations of phrases, the reputation of the sender, and other constantly changing rules. Looking for a spammy word like “Click here!” doesn’t cut it anymore. For a valid test, the email must pass through real-life spam filters and, also, pass through “spam firewalls,” such as the offerings from Postini, Brightmail, and MessageLabs that are often used by businesses.

Return Path assembled the test environment in a single, brilliant service, now available from MailChimp for small business, non-profits, and associations. Test email newsletters and get delivered, just like the big guys. MailChimp’s Inbox Inspector, powered by ReturnPath, makes it easy to:

  • Preview email marketing newsletters as they will display in different email programs
  • Get that marketing newsletter through spam filters
  • Test deliverability across barriers, like corporate spam firewalls
  • Get access to up-to-date spam filter technology and blacklist algorithms
  • Stay current on new email clients, such as Outlook 2007 and the upcoming Windows Live Hotmail service and Yahoo! Mail Beta.

The Rocket Science Group, the brainpower behind MailChimp, makes email marketing ever simpler, more useful, and more efficient.

###About Return Path

Founded in 1999, Return Path is an e-mail performance management company dedicated to improving the reach, delivery performance and overall success of permission-based e-mail programs. More than 1,500 companies use Return Path’s services to generate superior results from their e-mail programs, taking advantage of Return Path’s pioneering innovation in deliverability, ECOA, list hygiene, double-opt-in list acquisition, online market research and best practices strategy. Return Path’s Sender Score is the industry’s original and premier e-mail deliverability solution, including Sender Score Certified for e-mail accreditation and Sender Score Reputation Monitor, the most comprehensive reputation management system. For more information, please visit http://www.returnpath.net. Media contact: Jennifer Wilson, vice president of Communications at Return Path, 303/642-4128 or jennifer [dot] wilson [at] returnpath [dot] net.

About MailChimp

MailChimp supports more than 3 million subscribers worldwide, sending 3 billion emails per month. The MailChimp platform improves the user experience by providing seamless, yet powerful email marketing and publishing features that are easy and affordable enough for a small business to get started, but powerful enough for a large company looking for an enterprise level solution. MailChimp’s platform provides an open API used by more than 250,000 subscribers. MailChimp integrates with many third party applications including Facebook, Twitter, Eventbrite, SurveyGizmo, Salesforce, WordPress, Magento, Joomla, Drupal and Google Analytics. And best of all, prices start at free.