Despite the advancements in online content delivery, e-mail has remained relatively static. E-mail newsletter designers are still constricted by ’90s era design standards and the medium has never been a prime market for advertisers. However, if two Penn students get their way, e-mail will become next great untapped ad market.
AirTime, founded by Penn students Dan Shipper and Patrick Leahy, is hoping to revolutionize the way we look at e-mail signatures by enabling companies to update company-wide email signatures on the fly.
As Leahy told Technically Philly last week, the duo is obsessed with creating small, nimble businesses that are profitable from day one and require no outside investment to start. Leahy and Shipper have been hacking and testing on the product for months between classes and during late night coding sessions.
AirTime allows companies to insert a single line of code (another obsession of Leahy’s) and then have a universally controlled advertisement as an email signature. The company-wide email signatures can be modified after emails are sent. So when a company launches a new product, every email ever sent with AirTime enables users to change to the new messaging. Users can also target email advertisements based on location or platform, so when you open the McDonalds newsletter on your mobile device, an advertisement could automatically direct you to the nearest restaurant.
AirTime then enables companies to measure analytics such as views and conversions from the advertisement (below).
Shipper, you may remember, was behind DomainPolish, a company he created as side project. The website feedback platform quickly gained steam, resulting in a sleepless but profitable weekend for the Penn sophomore. Leahy previously launched Penn Free Food a service that automatically scans university listservs for mentions of events with free food on campus.
The duo have been working on AirTime, originally called “EyeRedux” for months, and the company has already received buzz on Hacker News and has signed up 63 users.-30-
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