GoldMail Brings Media-Rich Presentations To Email

When it comes to communication, efficiency is everything. Voicemail is giving way to text based messages like SMS and Email, which are more easily sorted and can be quickly skimmed. But while basic text may be enough to convey simple ideas, it often falls short with when trying to pitch a startup, or offer a business proposal. GoldMail has built a platform that allows users to send media-rich messages that can include graphics and audio while still retaining much of the flexibility of Email.

A GoldMail message is essentially a Flash slideshow that can include any number of images, Powerpoint slides, and text, which are accompanied by the sender’s voiceover. Messages are created using GoldMail’s Windows client (a Mac version is on the way), and are then uploaded and hosted on GoldMail’s servers. Recipients of a GoldMail message are sent a text introduction along with a link to the full GoldMail movie. And while you can make the messages as complex as you’d like, they generally only take around 5-10 minutes to put together.

In practice the service seems to work well – I would much rather watch a 3 minute narrated presentation than read many pages of text, and building a presentation was straightforward. That said, GoldMail is only useful when the message contains something I know I want to hear about. For unsolicited communication the service would grow old quickly, as there’s no way to skim through a message to see if the content is worthwhile in the first place – if I started receiving multiple GoldMail messages a day, I’d probably skip them altogether.

GoldMail originally launched last November as a consumer-oriented service, but the company soon realized that it was better suited to business-to-business communication. Until now the service has been quite expensive (running around $5000 for an initial license and then $500 per person), but GoldMail is eager to grow its user base and has dropped the price to around $100 per user, per year, with no initial license fee.