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Interview with Caloga: "the email marketing market is complicated, it has not always been able to protect itself".

Charles-QuintaineThis week, we welcome an interview with Caloga. You know that Badsender doesn't always have acquisition practices in its heart, but that doesn't mean that we should remain closed, refuse to dialogue and not make up our minds! Caloga is a member of APMEL, the Association for the Protection of the Use of Electronic Messages for Commercial Purposes whose creation we announced to you more than a year ago.

To answer these questions, Charles Quintaine took his pen. Charles has been Caloga's Sales Director for almost a year now after a stint at ividence and Tradedoubler.

The interview

Can you give us a brief history of Caloga? When was the company founded, by whom, has the business model evolved since the beginning of the adventure?

logo-calogaCALOGA was created in 2000 by 5 entrepreneurs who had previously created several companies together. CALOGA started out as a high-tech portal that included CALOWEB, the first French version of Google. We then specialized in natural referencing and email advertising, first in France and then in other countries. Today, thanks to our proprietary technology and our expertise in the fields of data and deliverability, CALOGA has broadened its scope of intervention, its offer, and proposes numerous tools to advertisers, publishers and agencies. Always around email.

In general, what services does Caloga offer?

We can summarize them quite simply. We have 4 services:

  • ROUTER. A brand talks to its own customers or prospects, especially by email. In this context, CALOGA is an email router, which aims to optimize the performance of the advertiser's communication emails with its customers, whether these emails are transactional, informative or loyalty emails.
  • MEDIA. Email marketing is first and foremost a powerful recruitment tool for brands. CALOGA acts as a medium. Our databases represent a large audience, which we make available to our clients.
  • ADVERTISING. Our expertise in segmentation, marketing and deliverability prompted us to create a "regie" type offer in 2013. A site, advertiser, portal, or theme, can call on us and entrust us with its optin database so that we can monetize it for it.
  • AUDIT. Finally, we offer advertisers looking to optimize their image, their e-reputation, and therefore their email performance, a complete audit: targeting, creatives, deliverability, benchmark.

The email acquisition market has suffered a lot in the last few years because of the bad practices of some players. How do you differ from them?

It is quite true, the email market is a complicated market, which has not always known how to protect itself and prepare for changes. Like many professionals and Internet users, we have observed unethical practices, opportunistic strategies and, let's face it, a bit of blindness on the part of colleagues, but also on the part of advertisers who were not aware of the importance of entrusting their prospecting to professionals who respect the rules in force. CALOGA has taken the gamble of securing its activities by ensuring that a strong code of ethics is maintained at the heart of its strategy. All our profiles are opt-in partners and have been collected in full transparency, always displaying the CALOGA brand, and we manage all our databases entirely in-house. We are convinced that our market must be based on a true respect for the Internet user, on a true listening of the ISPs' recommendations, and on a true effort of advice to the advertisers.

Does the consumer really see the difference?

Yes, clearly. We send advertising by email, and let's face it, there will always be people who are bothered, even if they have given their consent, to be exposed to advertising. By email, but also in their mailbox, by SMS, on websites, or in front of their TV. But our members can contact us very easily, we are transparent, and we unsubscribe people who want to. This point differentiates us from some of our colleagues or competitors. In addition, we are implementing targeting strategies that allow us, more and more, to send the right ad to the right person at the right time. It's never foolproof. But we are convinced that our innovations are going in the right direction. You only have to look at what digital advertising specialists have achieved outside of email: behavioral targeting is preponderant.

You also offer services related to loyalty, which is perhaps a little less known. Could you tell us more about it?

We started this activity this year. We act as a complement to the CRM agencies that create the scenarios for soliciting customers. We ensure the measurement, management and optimization of the mailings. We focus on three missions, very technological:

  • We are first of all a source of DATA among others, because the emails sent, opened, accepted or refused are precious information for a brand. We are therefore very attentive to the processing of this data, and to the optimization of performance.
  • We are then the brand's messenger, so to speak. Because the scenarios that our clients and their advisors have set up, we make sure that they are real, by ensuring that the emails are sent correctly.
  • Finally, we are the first line of security in terms of our clients' reputation. We sometimes receive alerts from Internet users or ISPs, we are able to issue alerts ourselves. And if necessary, we sound the alarm and propose solutions to our customers.

What are the 3 main challenges for the next few months in the emailing world?

The three major challenges in the email world are, in our opinion, the following: Innovation, ethics, and communication.

  1. The email market still needs to improve the quality of practices. We need to innovate, to make sure we keep up with the realities of our time. The rise of mobile is a good example of a phenomenon that has already forced us to change our practices. Our technologies have had to adapt, and very quickly.
  2. In this respect, ethics are essential. Responsible actors must make themselves heard and respected. They can only do this, and we can only do this, by working together more. This is the meaning, for example, of our commitment within the APMEL association. Publishers, advertisers, and email address providers need to dialogue more, in order to better define priorities.
  3. But ethics will not be enough. The dubious practices you mentioned have sometimes also resulted in a drop in prices in our market. So we need to revalue our work. Email marketing has magnificent results, and sometimes the market forgets this. Again, we have to collectively show what we do and explain it. A price adjustment will have a positive effect on practices. And if this translates into greater support from Internet users, who are at the heart of our business, then the whole market will be a winner.

What do you think of the French emailing market? Is it mature or is there still room for innovation?

Yes, there is still room for innovation.

In terms of technology, the shift in the display advertising market over the past few years is showing us the way. The most advanced email marketers have been immersed in data for 15 years, the shift in the e-advertising market in recent years suits us very well. Mobile is also one of our strengths.

In terms of methodology, we are seeing - at last - a greater cohesion between advertisers' "loyalty" and "acquisition" strategies, and therefore a better harmonization of practices. This is very good news and opens up huge prospects for the email market.

A last word to conclude?

It will be "thank you".

Because the vigilance of BADSENDER is a necessity, an approach that we support. Because it is one of the conditions for our market to improve further.

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