Brand Indicator for Message Identification (BIMI) is a protocol and certification that can help improve consumer trust in email marketing. So why is it still lagging behind in adoption among marketers? The BIMI process is something that we’ve talked about a few times on this blog--we are very big believers in its use as a tool to identify yourself to prospects and give yourself more authority. While certainly the hoops are not necessarily an easy accomplishment for all businesses, it’s surprising to many in the industry--not just us at Site Impact--that it’s still not as widely adopted as it probably should be. Let’s take a look at some of the reasons that might be--and why it’s worth it anyway.
While the protocol to implement BIMI is definitely a value-add for brands of almost all sizes, it’s definitely worth noting that the process takes time and some effort. It’s more involved than the verification process for social media platforms, but it’s actually not that complicated when you break it down. You need a domain that’s “Properly authenticated with SPF and DKIM and has configured Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting & Conformance (DMARC) at enforcement,” according to Matthew Vernhout, Chairman at San Francisco, CA.-based BIMI Group. That authentication process does take time, but it’s not actually complicated. Brands must also publish a DNS record, along with providing their company logo in the correct format. These things add up, but they aren’t things that require a huge amount of legwork compared to other email marketing efforts. So it’s still a little strange that marketers aren’t onboard in higher volumes.
In exchange for taking these steps and authenticating, brands that use BIMI (on those platforms that have adopted it, including Gmail and Yahoo, and soon to include AOL and some others) get the benefit of additional authority for their recipients. Their company logo shows up to “prove” that it’s really the company itself reaching out to a particular recipient. This is useful not just for those situations where sensitive information might be in question, but also for email marketing efforts. There’s higher engagement when recipients know for certain that the sender of an email is a company they want and have chosen to do business with. It’s an all-around win--especially in a world where phishing and other malicious email techniques are increasingly common and frequent. Marketers looking to establish their bona fides with email marketing audiences will do well to follow in the footsteps of bigger brands that have already adopted the standard.
BIMI is a tool that will make it much easier for brands of all sizes to immediately establish confidence with the people they send email marketing campaigns to. It’s surprising that more marketers aren’t willing to undertake the process, especially given that it’s not all that complicated and doesn’t take a huge amount of time. By establishing ID and flashing that identification badge in the inbox, marketers will find a higher rate of engagement and more trust from the audiences they market to. Contact Site Impact to hear how we keep on top of all of the most important advances in email marketing technology and strategy.