Instructive Interview with ZeroBounce Founder & CEO Liviu TanaseWritten by Leiann on August 03, 2020
Today, we shake things up a bit and present a Q&A introduction to Liviu Tanase, the founder and CEO of ZeroBounce,
He describes himself as serial entrepreneur. And with over 15 years of experience under his belt, this appears to be an apt characterization. In addition to founding five companies, this telecommunications executive has participated in three exits creating whopping quadruple-digit returns.
His current focus, ZeroBounce, is an email validation service that helps organizations communicate more effectively by removing obsolete and risky data from email databases. The system removes email typos, nonexistent and abusive email accounts, spam traps, and other risky email addresses.
With over 4 billion emails validated to date, ZeroBounce serves 75,000+ businesses in 190+ countries. It serves enterprises both big and small. But when it comes to growing a strong email list, being a SMB can surprisingly serve as an email marketing advantage as more intimate connections are made possible.
Marketers using email lists validated by ZeroBounce report a 98%+ accuracy rate and maintain an excellent sending reputation. This is probably why it was added to the 2019 Inc. 5000 list of the fastest-growing private companies in the United States.
So sit back, relax and soak up all the email marketing and entrepreneurship insights Mr. Tanase has generously shared!
Q. What inspired you to start ZeroBounce?
A. Mostly, the lack of an email validation service on the market able to fulfill all our needs. My business partners and I had been involved in the email industry for many years, and needed a reliable tool. So we created it.
Also, we knew how much email marketing was going to grow – the market value is supposed to reach 22.16 billion by 2025. When you’re playing in such a high-level market, you want to make sure your budget is wisely invested and returns consistently.
Data quality plays a huge role here, and more businesses realize now that they need fresh, accurate email lists. We’re happy to help them with that.
Q. What do you think makes ZeroBounce stand out when compared with competitors?
A. I’d say the accuracy we guarantee (98%, one of the highest in the industry) and the variety of data protection mechanisms we have in place. These two value propositions are at the core of ZeroBounce and we’ve never strayed from them.
In time, though, ZeroBounce has become more than an email verification platform. We verify email databases, but also add missing info to them and remove duplicates – at no charge. Then, there’s the A.I. email scoring system that further validates catch-all emails.
Recently, we launched two email deliverability tools to help people test their emails, before sending, and achieve the best outcomes from their campaigns.
See, marketers and business owners are busy people. They juggle with so many things. The easier we make it for them to maintain their lists and reach the inbox, the more relevant we are in the market.
What also stands out is our 27/7 customer support team. There aren’t many companies like ours that offer this perk, and people love it. If you look through our reviews, they often refer to our amazing team.
Q. Could you tell us a bit more about email deliverability tools?
A. Landing in people’s inboxes is where effective email marketing starts. Especially for small business owners, making sure they connect with their audience is vital. You can’t afford to spend resources on sending emails that reach no one.
Pruning stale and risky contacts from your list is the place to start, but there are deliverability tools that can help you accomplish even more. For instance, a good mail server tester tells you whether you need to work on your configurations. If your server is not set up correctly, that can cause you to land in spam.
Then, you can use an inbox placement tester to see if your email will go to inbox or spam, or will not get delivered at all. Think of how valuable it is to gather this feedback before you send your campaign. It allows you to make adjustments and increase your chances of arriving in the inbox.
Q. What are your top tips for boosting email sign-ups?
A. Make every email spectacular. What you put in is what you get back, so it’s best to not send anything if you can’t find a way to help your audience with your content. When you manage to be helpful, your list grows organically thanks to word of mouth.
Of course, it also helps to have a content offer, such as an e-book, video, or infographic. Original research relevant to your industry will get people to sign up.
Oh, and include a sign-up link or button in your templates! This is so easy to do and it allows other people to subscribe if one of your emails gets forwarded to them.
Q. What is one bit of email marketing advice you would give to small business owners?
A. Do it with care and generosity. For your audience and for your business.
And here’s another bit: measure everything you do. That way, you can see what performs best, so you can give your subscribers exactly what they need and want from you.
Q. What do you consider to be the top 3 qualities of a successful entrepreneur?
A. The most important trait of a successful entrepreneur is also the trait that’s most helpful in life: resilience.
I started my first business when I was 16 and went on to found five other successful companies. But success came at the price of countless failures, and it was up to me whether I’d give up or keep on going. Every time I didn’t give up, I developed a new layer of confidence and tenacity, and that only made me more resilient.
The other two are discipline and adaptability. You need discipline to show up consistently and invest yourself in your projects. Also, you have to be able to adapt to your environment. Everything is constantly moving, changing, transforming. Being flexible is a big part of being successful.
Q. What’s your best advice for someone who wants to start a business in 2020?
A. Research until your head hurts. Study your market and competitors. Also, search for advice from economists, sociologists, anthropologists, financiers – people who study the world for a living and can envision where we’re headed.
Much of this advice is free and it can guide you in the right direction. Look at the bigger picture, absorb as much as you can, and think before you throw yourself in the water.
Furthermore, don’t start it alone. Get together – even just on Zoom – with your close ones. Brainstorm, share ideas and information.
Social distancing is now the norm, but you probably agree: staying connected and cultivating great relationships is the most precious thing we have right now, in business and in life.
Make sure your invoices reach your customers
Phew! It’s a lot of great advice to take in, right?
Just remember transactional emails are a crucial part of daily business workflows. So is any follow-up communication relating to invoices. You want to make sure it reaches your customers.
For that to happen, you need to double-check your clients’ email addresses. It’s super easy to do if you make the most of the InvoiceBerry – ZeroBounce integration and validate any email address in seconds.