HEC-Ecole de gestion de l'Université de Liège
HEC-Ecole de gestion de l'Université de Liège

Selection, evaluation and comparison of six email service providers for a digital agency to recommend to its clients

Valente, Allan ULiège
Promotor(s) : Blavier, André ULiège
Date of defense : 5-Sep-2016 • Permalink :
Title : Selection, evaluation and comparison of six email service providers for a digital agency to recommend to its clients
Author : Valente, Allan ULiège
Date of defense  : 5-Sep-2016
Advisor(s) : Blavier, André ULiège
Committee's member(s) : Mawhin, Marie ULiège
Hazee, Simon ULiège
Brandt, Céline ULiège
Language : English
Keywords : [fr] Digital Agency, Email Service Provider, Email Marketing, Evaluation, Comparison, Ranking
Discipline(s) : Business & economic sciences > Marketing
Institution(s) : Université de Liège, Liège, Belgique
Degree: Master en sciences de gestion, à finalité spécialisée en Digital Marketing and Sales Management
Faculty: Master thesis of the HEC-Ecole de gestion de l'Université de Liège


[fr] It is clear that during the last few years, there has been an increase in the email complexity. However, an element that remained constant is the effectiveness of Email Marketing as a Digital channel. Indeed, it is still one of the best in terms of ROI but if marketers want to succeed in today’s Email Marketing, they need to produce well designed and extremely personalised emails, almost like a one-to-one communication with each of their subscribers. One of the tools that can help them in achieving such effectiveness is an Email Service Provider. Unfortunately, it is not an easy task to find one that perfectly match their needs due to the number of platforms available on the market.
To conduct this project, I first started by selecting the platforms and then defined specific criteria on which I would compare them. In this evaluation process, five main criteria (“Platform”, “Features”, “Integration”, “Support” and “Pricing”) and multiple sub criteria were considered. A decision matrix was later used to evaluate and rank the six platforms. The data needed to fill the matrix were gathered by two surveys.
The first survey was sent to Email Marketing experts to collect the weights of importance of each criterion. A total of 34 experts answered the survey and provided me with weights that I considered as industry “default”. The second survey was sent to users to obtain the ratings of the selected platforms and 44 of them answered the survey. I believe the use of multiple experts and users helped me get different viewpoints and experiences and therefore, reduced my single- person opinion.
The combination of the two inputs resulted in a weighted score attributed to each ESP. This long process helped me find the strengths and weaknesses of the different platforms and gave me essential information about which one could fit what type of clients.



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  • Valente, Allan ULiège Université de Liège > Master sc. gest., fin. spéc. digit. mark. & sale (ex 2e ma.)


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