Why On-Premises Solutions are a Vital Part of SparkPost

When I talk to people about SparkPost, it’s easy for the conversation to hone in on one of our cloud offerings. Specifically, SparkPost Cloud or SparkPost Signals – our analytics suite designed to optimize email performance and increase your customer engagement. And who can blame them? These highly performant tools are getting a ton of coverage in the media, growing like a wildfire, and are having a significant impact on customers’ bottom line. In all the hype, it is easy to forget about the steady drumbeat of innovation happening in other corners of the office. Specifically, our massive footprint in the on-premises MTA world made possible by our Momentum and PowerMTA products.

What’s new with PowerMTA?

One of the most exciting pieces of news I get to share about our on-premises products is the launch of the newest version of PowerMTA – PowerMTA 5.0! This product has spent years in development and many of the features included have spent substantial time being used and abused by our great network of early adopters in two separate beta releases. I’ll avoid going into too much detail here but a few key items of the 5.0r1 release include:

  • A huge refresh to our web monitor making things easier to find in a single place and reducing the need to reference the User Manual.
The revised Command Page is designed to create a more user-friendly experience without the need to frequently reference the User Guide.
  • Outbound proxy support allowing IPs to be placed in a centralized external proxy server rather than on each individual MTA.
  • Email submissions via HTTP – more on this below!

Signals for On-Premises (Momentum and PowerMTA)

SparkPost technology is used to send over a third of the entire world’s business email. That means we generate an absolute mountain of data which we can use to power the world’s best email analytics suite – SparkPost Signals. One of the most satisfying puzzle pieces to put into place on our roadmap is bridging the gap between the on-premises world and the cloud. We have dedicated a ton of time and effort in 2019 to building connectors that allow our on-premises Momentum and PowerMTA customers to use SparkPost Signals in a way that wasn’t previously possible for on-premises MTAs.

Not only does Signals provide insight into your own sending patterns but by leveraging our massive data footprint, we’re able to present benchmark data to compare your sending against the world. Leverage like this is the only way to truly optimize your messaging strategies and has never been possible for on-premises MTAs before now.

Here are a few roadmap highlights from out Signals for On-Premises development efforts for 2019. These features are available for Momentum and PowerMTA:

  • Subaccount designation enabling traffic segmentation and creating valuable reseller opportunities to bring the power of SparkPost Signals directly to your customers; and
  • Custom Message ID allowing for integrating your own engagement tracking data directly into SparkPost Signals. Simply let us know which header contains the message ID and we’ll take care of matching everything back up behind the scenes.

Leveraging On-Premises and Cloud Offerings in Combination for Resiliency and Disaster Recovery

Email is, hands down, the most valuable communication channel. A recent study by Litmus put the ROI for email at something close to 38:1. Couple that with the security and general acceptance of email as the go-to channel for transactional messaging and it becomes invaluable to nearly any business. That’s exactly why so many teams are investing heavily in creating a backup plan. Some teams are opting for a dual vendor strategy while others are choosing to use multiple products from the same vendor. Obviously, we’re partial to the latter when customers are choosing SparkPost to provide their solutions so we’ve made investments to improve how we’re able to be your sole provider while making sure we offer comparable resiliency to a dual-vendor strategy without all the extra headache.

One way that’s available now is a hot:hot strategy that uses an on-premises product in combination with SparkPost cloud. This works by simply maintaining an active SparkPost cloud account and an active PMTA or Momentum on-premises instance. Since both will have warm IPs, it’s very straightforward to reroute injections if an issue arises with one or the other. As a bonus, now that PMTA supports REST Injection, many of the processes in place will play nice with one another between SparkPost cloud and PowerMTA meaning a reduced learning curve to get started and less lost time switching between the two.

Looking Ahead

We’re excited about the opportunity to continue to serve both the on-premises and cloud markets into 2020 and beyond. Our on-premises customers can continue looking forward to regular updates as well as enhanced support for valuable integrations such as SparkPost Signals. By combining the security and flexibility of on-premises MTAs with the deep insights of SparkPost’s cloud offering the future for your sending is bright.

If you’re an existing customer that would like to talk shop or a team looking to add an on-premises offering to your existing environment, let’s chat.