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Validity helps MeritB2B improve their average inbox placement rates by over 60%

The challenge:

High bounce rates and risk of spam traps.

The email channel forms an important part of MeritB2B’s performance marketing solutions. By their own recognition, they were a mature sender, but had some blind spots around some of the more technological email marketing challenges, including deliverability and data quality.

Additionally, since their campaigns often require purchasing cold third-party data of varying quality from a broad range of providers, MeritB2B was challenged with high email bounce rates and the risk of blocklistings with Spamcop and Spamhaus.

This was adversely affecting their sender reputation metrics and negatively impacting their deliverability. Inbox placement rates at some major mailbox providers were very low and the company’s average open rates had dropped to below half their long-term benchmark. These problems were forcing them to scale back their email activity significantly.

Since their program revenue and client success are directly related to campaign effectiveness, this caused MeritB2B to review all things email. They suspected they had a major deliverability problem but didn’t know where to start.

“At MeritB2B, we very much value our partnerships. We want to engage with companies that are world class leaders, that care about customer services and delivering high quality solutions. Partners that have the same values and decent people to deal with, as well. Validity is on a growth path, just like us . . . definitely a win/win scenario. We actually look at our sender reputation as a corporate asset. That’s become very powerful to us because we now have a much better understanding of email as a channel.”

Karie Burt – SVP/CPO, MeritB2B

The solution:

Accurate reporting around key email metrics.

While some of the email challenges faced by MeritB2B reflected downward trends across the industry, they took pride in being ahead of the curve with their clients and knew they needed to improve their game.

MeritB2B had previously retained an independent email consultant who provided guidance on how to improve their data quality and make changes to their broadcasting infrastructure, creative recommendations to reduce filtering and increase engagement, and general education around email best practices.

A positive outcome from this was the company understood that they needed far greater visibility of the factors driving their email deliverability and performance. This led to an introduction to Validity, and in May 2020, MeritB2B became a client.

For the first time, MeritB2B was able to generate accurate reporting around key metrics like sender reputation and inbox placement, as well as use tools that would help with content rendering and device utilization. MeritB2B also gained access to Validity’s subject matter experts for ongoing support and guidance.

“Our deliverability has increased and we are in a better position to remove the ‘unwanted’ records much earlier in the process. Our inbox placement is much stronger and is continually going up . . . to remain successful we are taking all measures and using the best tools in the industry to do so.”

Courtney Cope – Director of Data Operations, MeritB2B

The results:

A positively transformed email program.

The following chart shows the progress MeritB2B has made. These results should be viewed in the context of a B2B sender using cold third-party data to drive lead generation and showcase a big journey of improvement:
MeritB2B’s average inbox placement rates have improved by over 60%, but success for MeritB2B has not just been about improved deliverability. Their relationship with Validity has resulted in an entirely new way of thinking about the email channel. For the first time, they are harnessing genuine insights from their email data and delivering far greater success and value for their clients. MeritB2B has described this experience as “transformative.” Their relationship with Validity has helped them to grow their own intellectual property and position themselves as bona fide email subject matter experts.
MeritB2B was formed in 2000 and, until recently, was known as MeritDirect. The name change was intended to better reflect their singular focus and expertise in the business marketing community. MeritB2B takes a “data first” approach to building solutions for multi-channel B2B and technology marketers worldwide. Their clients rely on them for new customer acquisition, ABM and demand generation, analytics, and customer data platforms. Headquartered in New York, they also have offices in Chicago, Denver, Lincoln, Boston, Clearwater, and London.

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