Jun 9 2010

Why I Love Our New Product

Why I Love Our New Product


Return Path officially announced a new product today called Domain Assurance, which I blogged a little bit about here.  It’s a very exciting product that will help reduce and ultimately eliminate phishing emails – spam’s even more evil cousin that leads to identity theft, malware, further propagation of spam through botnets, and all sorts of other goodies.  The product is in beta now with a bunch of top ISPs and brands.

Those are a lot of reasons to love our new product.  But for me, there’s more.

For starters, this is the first new product (entirely new product, not just a feature or extension) that we’ve launched in years.  While we’ve made some acquisitions and done a ton of product development, they’ve always been right in our strike zone of deliverability.  This is a nice, deeply interrelated adjacency.  It’s fun to branch out a little bit and do something new.

Second, this product is a great example of operating leverage.  Many of the necessary ingredients for it were already in house – most notably customers and partners, but also a lot of data.  That’s what adjacencies should be about.  Building it, while a significant effort (and one that’s not completely done yet) was significantly easier than building, say, the original deliverability tool set or reputation database.  Let’s hear it for scale!

Finally, the product showcases Return Path’s commitment to open standards, which is fundamental to the Internet’s success.  We hope our new Domain Assurance product encourages more and more mailers to authenticate all of their outbound mail, and we hope the product also encourages the use of ADSP and ultimately some productive enhancements to both ADSP and DKIM.  Authentication does not equal reputation, but we’ve said for years it’s the fundamental underpinning of it.