Elevator Pitch: Black Pearl Mail

Elevator Pitch: Black Pearl Mail

Elevator Pitch is a regular feature on Lifehacker where we profile startups and new companies and pick their brains for entrepreneurial advice. This week, we’re talking with Nick Lissette from Black Pearl Mail.

In 128 words or less, explain your business idea.

Daily company email is the number one form of business communication in the world today yet it is significantly under-utilised as a branding and marketing medium.

Based in Wellington, Black Pearl Mail professionally brands, manages and measures your everyday business email. Aesthetically this means up-top branding, borders, YouTube, rotating images and more. Functionally the resulting designs display on all devices (including smartphones and tablets) and from all devices.

Businesses can link email images or content to a webpage or campaigns to drive traffic and conversions — essentially transforming daily email into a digital marketing channel. This is all managed from a DIY central management console which the customer controls.

What strategies are you using to grow and finance your idea?

Black Pearl Mail services both the enterprise market via a direct sales forces and the general global business market through online sales made possible by Black Pearl Mail’s DIY design engine and management console. Black Pearl Mail is well backed by highly successful Australian and New Zealand management and stakeholders.

What’s the biggest challenge facing your business?

Quickly and clearly differentiating our product, which focuses on daily business email, from bulk email marketing products (campaign email).

How do you differentiate your business from your competitors?

We don’t have any eye-ball competitors . . . at the moment at least!

What one phone, tablet or PC application could you not live without?

Actually my definition of success is when I no longer have to have a phone or computer to live the lifestyle I want!

What’s the best piece of business advice you’ve ever received?

“Do or do not. There is no try”. I only found out years later it was a Yoda quote — but I love the definiteness of it. There are no ‘best and fairest’ awards in business!

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  • Ugh.. Long email signatures with large pictures and logos are the bane of my life.

    • I was thinking the same thing reading this. You work in the IT department of your company as well?

      • Hi. Thanks for your comment. The beauty of Black Pearl Mail is that you can give ‘creative access’ to marketing and they can do designs and make changes without bothing IT – it’s actually a nice benefit.

    • Hi. They can be if they don’t render correctly or are a hassle to manage. Black Pearl Mail removes that. Also, some of my favourite customer signatures are really understanded with just a subtle logo in the top left hand corner – you don’t need to make emails look like the sides of F1 cars!

  • Best of luck with the business.

    Given there’s no competitors in your specific category, that may be a danger sign. “There may be a niche in the market – but is there a market in the niche?”

    • Thanks Zenu! Competition is certainly heating up and it is forecast to be a competitive area in 12-18 months. We are just enjoying first to market benefits at the moment.

  • How does it work? Is it a cloud or an installed solution?
    How does it manage signatures better?
    How much does it cost?
    Can it work with Google apps and Office365?

    • Hi. It works by branding emails after you hit send (meaning it isn’t controlled at device level which is great). Most customers opt for our SaaS/Cloud option but we have some large companies (2000+ employees) that have an internal install – so we can do both. The short answer to ‘How it manages signatures better’ is that we have a central management console where all the branding is controlled – it might be best to go to our website or get a free demo to better explain. Black Pearl Mail is USD$1.00/user/month – so if you are a business with 50 emailing employees then it is only $50.00 per month. Yes, we work awesomely with both! Thanks for your interest.

    • Hi there. There are a few old fashion signature/branding tools that skirt around the fringes of what Black Pearl Mail does, but I don’t consider them competition. I think they lack the technology at both an online and enterprise level to fulfill modern customer’s needs. We would certainly welcome some more players though as it will help create greater market awareness!

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