This Ad Will Self-Destruct

E-mail marketer BigString will destroy your messages. Sure, other e-mail services offer e-mails that go kaput mere seconds or minutes after being read. But BigString takes its lead from the explosive interest in Web video; the e-mails it'll blast into a cyber black hole are video e-mails.

BigString has tested its service with six marketers including a mortgage company, and plans to launch commercially in mid-September. BigString will target marketers such as travel companies and office-supply firms that want to create some urgency with their e-mail marketing, says CEO Darin Myman. He expects marketers will use the technology to create "act now" video messages that self-destruct after a set time period.

"You send an e-mail that says you have to act now and click on the video and then the video says you have one hour," he says. And at the end of the hour? Poof! No more e-mail, no more offer. "It's almost like getting infomercials in your e-mail."

Click-to-purchase rates hover in the low single digits for e-mail messages. Myman expects video e-mails will generate a higher return on investment. "Take the Web 2.0 technology and move it to the marketing side."

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