New at

Hey, if you're wondering who the heck I am, the fine folks at Kickbox just published a Q&A between myself and my new (to me) colleague Jennifer Nespola Lantz. Click on over to the Kickbox blog to check it out

And if you're a weirdo who likes time travel, below the fold, you'll find a copy of my ExactTarget welcome email. When I started at ExactTarget (now Salesforce Marketing Cloud) back in August 2006, it was the custom that every employee would create an email introducing themselves, and send that email out to the entire company. It was a great way to get to know folks. I thought it'd be fun to archive it here, to try to protect it from bit rot. A few things have changed since then: Kate is now my wife, and my friend's jazz club is no more. But I do still live in Chicago, and I consider it to be my adopted home town.

Anyway, enough about me. Back to the "real" content tomorrow.

Subject: New at ExactTarget: Al Iverson
I've been helping consumers and companies deal with spam and deliverability issues since 1997. At MAPS, "once the most feared anti-spam blacklist out there" (as Chip put it in his recent email), I created a product called the Relay Spam Stopper (RSS), a tool to block spam from open relaying mail servers that had been hacked into and used to send spam. I also worked on the MAPS RBL (Realtime Blackhole List) project, promoting double opt-in and generally sticking my nose in other peoples' businesses.

In 2000, I came to Digital River. At DR I was the policy manager and coordinator for spam issues across the multitude of companies owned by DR. DR owns more than a dozen companies, all with varying policies and concerns. Some of them "got" spam and some didn't.

My girlfriend Kate and I at Chicago's Navy Pier.

A couple years ago, DR purchased an email service provider called BlueHornet. I was a power user of BlueHornet's email platform, regularly executing campaigns for one of their biggest clients, an anti-virus software publisher. I also executed email campaigns for many other DR clients, on both the BlueHornet platform, and a DR legacy platform called ECM, which was created back in 1999. Running campaigns for clients was something of an afterthought; deliverability wasn't considered a full-time position when I started so campaign execution ended up being another area where I could help out. It gave me a unique insight on how to handle deliverability challenges; I learned how to balance deliverability best practices with marketing objectives.

When I wasn't working on email-related stuff, I helped out on other marketing programs the company managed on behalf of clients. The mix included paid search advertising, affiliate marketing, free trial, and others. For example, I designed a simple cookie-based tracking mechanism that DR continues to use to track large amounts of revenue attributed to the paid search marketing program.

Besides all that, I've done a few other things in my time. I had a short stint as a radio DJ (on a ten station network). I used to be a print designer (working on ads for Jim Beam, BMW, Miller Lite, and others). Once upon a time, I was a Unix systems administrator (working primarily with Solaris and FreeBSD).

My friend Kenny Horst owns a jazz club in St. Paul, Minnesota, called the Artists' Quarter. I created the club's website way back in 1998, and continued to maintain it up until my recent move from Minneapolis to Chicago. In association with Kenny, I've also produced a number of jazz CDs for Minnesota musicians. We save money by doing most of the work ourselves; for example, I do the design and photography.

A few of the CDs I've produced.

I was born in Minneapolis and lived there for most of my life. I moved to Chicago, just a few weeks ago, to be with my girlfriend, Kate. Chicago isn't new to me, as I've been going there for weekend getaways for more than ten years. I'm a huge jazz fan, and have often been to Chicago clubs like the Green Mill, Jazz Showcase, etc.

Me (black glasses, third from right) with friends at the Artists' Quarter jazz club.

Indianapolis is new to me; I'd never been here before coming to work for ET. (I'll be splitting my time between here and Chicago.) So, feel free to reply to this email and tell me about your favorite places in town -- restaurants, clubs, parks, fun things to do. I'd appreciate the tips!

I look forward to getting to know everyone in the ExactTarget family. I've known Chip House for a long time; he used to work for Digital River. I've heard a lot from Chip, and from others, about what a great company ET is to work for. It's great to now be able to experience that first-hand!

Best regards,
Al Iverson

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  1. Love seeing your ET new employee email since I joined after you!
    Good luck at Kickbox!

    - Jason Meketa


Comments policy: Al is always right. Kidding, mostly. Be polite, please and thank you.