2014’s Fastest-Growing and Most Valuable Email Marketing Companies

  |  September 4, 2014   |  Comments

In this third annual review, we take a look at the email marketing companies that are rapidly developing wealth, jobs, and success.

Over the past two years, I have attempted to break email out of its box a bit by showcasing the success many email sector companies have had. The most tangible way is through the public stock markets and Inc. 5000 listings. This is not meant to be comprehensive, but accurate when it comes to publicly accessible data.

With the recent release of the 2014 Inc. 5000 list, it is time for the third annual review of the email-related companies making big things happen (including creating jobs and wealth) in the private sector and public markets.

In order to qualify for the Inc. 500|5000, companies must have generated revenues of at least $100,000 in 2010 and at least $2 million in 2013. They must also be for-profit, independent, and privately owned companies based in the U.S. Inc. Magazine, the publisher of the namesake list, says this is the most competitive crop in the list's history. The average company honored this year achieved three-year growth of 516 percent. The Inc. 5000's aggregate revenue is $211 billion, generating 505,000 jobs over the past three years.

Email marketing has had a major role in the economy the last few years, generating results for marketers and some staggering transactions on the mergers and acquisitions front (with Responsys, ExactTarget, and Eloqua as the headliners of this dance). The 2014 list of the email marketing companies that made this year's Inc. 5000 list is below. I define an email marketing company as one that primarily sells email marketing products and/or services.

This leaves us with nine companies that cover a wide range of the email marketing ecosystem. (Disclosure: My company, BrightWave, is on the list.)

  1. SendGrid - Boulder, Colorado #233
  2. Act-On Software - Beaverton, Oregon #245
  3. HubSpot - Cambridge, Massachusetts #1,100
  4. Infusionsoft - Chandler, Arizona #1,835
  5. Mad Mimi - New York, New York #1,928
  6. Listrak - Lititz, Pennsylvania #2,362
  7. Bronto Software - Durham, North Carolina #2,575
  8. BrightWave - Atlanta, Georgia #3,053
  9. ClickMail Marketing - San Mateo, California #4,704

These nine companies had approximately $243.7 million in combined 2013 revenue and created approximately 1,443 jobs during the previous three years (according to Inc. statistics). Yes, I would say email is very healthy once again despite the decade-plus taunts of email's imminent death.

Below are three publicly held companies that rely extensively on selling email marketing. Marketo, as a marketing automation company, places a large emphasis on email - and from my opinion, email is the central marketing piece to marketing automation, so therefore I included it. There are several large email companies that are smaller subsidiaries of their parent company - they are not included because they don't break out email-specific revenue in their filings.

Constant Contact: The longtime defending champion of the small business side of the email marketing landscape has a market cap of $970.64 million and 1,235 employees.

Lyris: The email service provider (ESP) has 150 employees with a market cap of almost $11.86 million despite annual revenue of more than $30 million.

Marketo: The largest independent marketing automation company, Marketo has a $1.21 billion market cap and 519 employees.

(Market caps are as of September 2, 2014 and public company data from Yahoo Finance.)

These companies are innovators and some have even carved out new categories of marketing with their rise. Notably, HubSpot has created "inbound" marketing, while I humbly think BrightWave has defined what an email marketing agency should be. Additionally, these companies are job creators and have executed impressive growth, some with substantial scale. The email marketing and marketing automation landscape continues to be remarkable in creating long-lasting and impactful companies. It's no wonder the industry has been enjoying a renaissance and these companies seem built to last.

Congrats to these 12 companies helping pave the way to bigger and better things for all involved in the email marketing world. The employees, clients, shareholders, and partners should all be proud of their many successes.

Image via Shutterstock.

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Simms Jenkins

Simms Jenkins is CEO of BrightWave Marketing, North America's leading email marketing-focused digital agency. The award-winning firm specializes in elevating email marketing and digital messaging programs that drive revenue, cut costs, and build relationships. Jenkins has led BrightWave Marketing in establishing a world-class client list including Affiliated Computer Service (A Xerox Company), Chick-fil-A, Cox Business, Phillips66, Porsche, and Southern Company. The agency was recently ranked among the fastest growing private companies by Inc. Magazine.

Jenkins was awarded the prestigious AMY 2010 Marketer of the Year from the American Marketing Association for being the top agency marketer and the Email Marketer of the Year at the Tech Marketing Awards held by the Technology Association of Georgia. Jenkins is regarded as one of the leading experts in the email marketing industry and is regularly cited by the media as such and called upon by the financial community to provide market insight and consulting.

Jenkins is the author of two definitive and highly regarded books on email marketing; The New Inbox (published in April 2013 by ClickZ/Incisive Media) and The Truth About Email Marketing (published by Pearson's Financial Times Press in 2008). Jenkins is currently the Email Marketing Best Practices Columnist for ClickZ, the largest resource of interactive marketing news and commentary in the world, online or off. His industry articles have been called one of the top 21 information sources for email marketers.

He has been featured in Fortune Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, Adweek, Bloomberg TV, Wired Magazine, and scores of other leading publications and media outlets. Jenkins is a regular speaker at major digital industry and general business conferences.

Additionally, Jenkins is the creator of and, the leading authorities on email and social media metrics. Prior to founding BrightWave Marketing, Jenkins headed the CRM group at Cox Interactive Media.

Jenkins serves on the eMarketing Association's Board of Advisors among other civic and professional boards. He is also a mentor at Flashpoint, a Georgia Tech-based startup accelerator program. Jenkins is a graduate of Denison University in Granville, Ohio and resides in Atlanta's Buckhead neighborhood with his wife and three children.

Follow and connect with Simms on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, The BrightWave Blog, and his book websites at and

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