Brand Indicators for Message Identification (BIMI) is an email specification that enables authenticated brands to display their logo within supported email clients.
While having a profile picture associated with a personal email account has been a capability offered by many email clients for some time, the capability for brands to personalize the images that display next to their messages has not been an option — until now.
This emerging specification has great benefits to brands and is gaining traction following Gmail’s announcement that they are rolling out BIMI support across the platform following a yearlong pilot. BIMI will most likely continue to be adopted by more email clients and has the potential to become an industry standard. Though full implementation can take time and effort, it is in brands’ best interest to be early adopters in order to take advantage of the differentiator in the inbox and be ahead of the curve.
BENEFITS FOR BRANDS
1. Offers an additional way to stand out in the inbox
Historically, sender name, sender address, subject line, and preheader have been the only things a brand can leverage to stand out in a crowded inbox. BIMI provides an additional opportunity to catch subscribers’ eyes and entice an open.
2. Benefits subscribers
BIMI also offers an increased level of security for subscribers. Since it relies on a trail of authentication, subscribers can be assured that a brand’s email is legitimate. In a world full of scams and phishing attempts, providing assurance will only benefit a brand in the long run and could be a win for email engagement.
3. Positive impact on email deliverability
Since BIMI relies on that trail of authentication, it can also help to improve sender reputation with email clients. This will contribute to deliverability over time, ensuring email messages are getting to subscriber inboxes.
HOW IT WORKS
When an email is sent to a subscriber’s inbox, participating email clients will authenticate the sender and message, reference the sending domain (i.e., 9Rooftops.com) for a BIMI record (the logo or image), and then display the logo in the inbox.
Currently only Yahoo, Google, and Fastmail support BIMI, but we anticipate that more clients will adopt this specification because of the increased level of security for their users and since industry leaders are beginning to roll out support across their platforms. Additionally, this specification is available for any and all senders and receivers, so it could have applications beyond just email.
If you want more information about how to get started with BMI, or need assistance moving forward with implementation, please reach out to the 9R CRM + Loyalty Team team.
1. Rodriguez, Jason. “What Is Bimi and Why Should Email Marketers Care?” Litmus, 17 Feb. 2021, https://www.litmus.com/blog/what-is-bimi-and-why-should-email-marketers-care/.
2. “All about Bimi.” BIMI Group, 19 May 2021, https://bimigroup.org/all-about-bimi/.
3. “bimi_phones.” Mailhardener.
4. Nagele, Chris. “DMARC: What Is It and Why Do You Need It?” Postmark, Postmark, 9 Feb. 2021, https://postmarkapp.com/guides/dmarc.
5. Sumrak, Jesse. “What Is Bimi? (Brand Indicators for Message Identification).” SendGrid, 27 Apr. 2021, https://sendgrid.com/blog/what-is-bimi/.
6. Ward, Anna. “What the Heck Is Bimi and Why Is It so Important?” Postmark, Postmark, 25 Aug. 2021, https://postmarkapp.com/blog/what-the-heck-is-bimi.
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