Build, Buy…Diversify!

Build buy or diversify with a mailbox with 3 types of mail going in.

By now, after reading our Build or Buy eBook, which you most certainly did (right?), you likely have a good understanding of the nuance between building or buying your email infrastructure. 

If you didn’t read it, it’s no biggie – we’ll give you a quick primer here but strongly encourage you get the full run-down from the book. 

Anyway, regardless of what method you decide to pursue, there’s another opportunity for you to further strengthen and customize your sending infrastructure as an email service provider (ESP). 

Diversify it. 

Build or buy, your customers rely on you 

In our eBook, we look through the pros and cons of both buying and building your own email sending infrastructure. The very core of the decision comes down to this: 

  • If you build, you’re looking at five or more years to build the nuanced infrastructure, then you’re on the hook for all the repairs and customizations you need to be able to operate it as needed.
  • If you buy, you are outsourcing things you may not want to outsource to an external vendor, while you’re responsible for optimizing and managing the infrastructure. 

But here is the big key in both situations: If something goes wrong, your sending infrastructure could be unable to send mail for however long it takes to fix. For an ESP, this is devastating. 

If you’ve built, it’s your job to fix it ASAP and however long it takes you to fix it is how long your senders will be without email service. If you’ve bought, while you’re not responsible for fixing the infrastructure itself, you AND your customers are at the mercy of how quickly the provider can resolve the issue. 

Protect your senders 

If a shared IP gets blocked because of one bad sender, you could have many other senders damaged by behavior outside of their control. Imagine your largest sender pushing all their mail through your infrastructure and their “pipe” gets blocked by Gmail…all their mail just stops sending. No sent mail, no delivered mail. 

Does this sound like a good idea? No, it certainly doesn’t. 

It’s your responsibility to protect your senders from a total stoppage of mail delivery via your infrastructure, be it bought or built. The difference doesn’t matter to them. They’re counting on you to deliver business-critical information to their recipients. 

Protect yourself 

Relying on a single solution isn’t doing you any favors. Imagine it: You’re chugging along, sending mail for your customers like any other day, and bam. Your sending infrastructure fails. Emails cease to send. Who are your customers mad at? Not your infrastructure provider, that’s for sure.  

They’re mad at you. This is not good for your business. 

Or another scenario: Your infrastructure provider jacks the prices up on you. You’re pigeonholed, you have no recourse other than to rip-and-replace, which is not the easiest thing to do. This can apply to any number of situations where you can be trapped.  

They change their service structure and you lose benefits you previously had. They start poaching your customers because they can remove your ESP as a middleman and benefit from their direct revenue. 

You’re boxed in.  

Will Ferrell in a glass case of emotion because he didn't diversify

The solution is surprisingly simple: diversify 

Quite frankly, it’s never smart to make one really large bet and hope it works out for you. Email is no different. 

So, instead of relying completely on one infrastructure…why not use more? Diversify.

Choosing to diversify your sending infrastructures solves two big issues for both you and your senders. 

  • If one infrastructure encounters an issue, the traffic on your other infrastructure will be unaffected and senders can still deliver at least some mail.
    But remember here, you’ll need to split the traffic of individual senders. If one sender is on one infrastructure and another is on a different infrastructure, one sender could still be completely hobbled by a blocklist or something similar. You need to make sure you’re splitting every sender’s traffic mindfully. 
  • You don’t need to rip and replace an entire infrastructure.
    Switching infrastructures is a big investment of time and money. While it can be a really great choice, it’s unrealistic to think all service providers have those resources or even the ability to do a full switch at any given time. Split the difference. 

When you invest in a secondary email infrastructure provider, you’re investing in business continuity. You’re hedging your bets! The risk of a total and complete shutdown in service is highly unlikely with two separate infrastructures.  

Need time to fix your bespoke infrastructure? Your bought infrastructure can handle some of the weight/wait (get it?). 

One sending IP is blocked? Let your separate sending infrastructure’s IPs do the work while you navigate getting off the blocklist. Plus, you can do cool stuff like A/B testing each to determine if one infrastructure is performing better with the same mailstream than the other. 

In THIS economy?! 

Like we said, it’s not the safest play to only use one infrastructure. But with budgets stretched tight and the economy looking a little shaky, it probably feels difficult to justify adding an expense where you’re already spending a significant amount of money. 

When you look at the benefits of continuity, however, the value in a secondary sending infrastructure is a lot easier to argue. 

  • Better customer service: When you can better guarantee zero disruptions in service, it’s easier to keep your customers happy. Say goodbye to long days filled with calls from angry customers trying to figure out why they are seeing their email performance tank overnight. 
  • Less churn: What do happier customers do? They stay with you. Reduce churn by being more proactive in solving problems before they start, even if it’s just as simple as installing a safety net around your original sending solution. 
  • More revenue: Your customers are happier and they’re churning less, so what will you have more opportunities to do? Expand! When you diversify sending infrastructures, not only will your current customers be more likely to stick with you as their ESP, but your reputation can benefit from being a reliable and high performing sending solution. Mo’ money, not mo’ problems. 

Not to toot our own horn here, but toot toot: With our combination of better cost per message, overall lower pricing, included services, and cutting-edge products letting your teams do more…we’re not a bad partner to consider. We’re a good one, in fact.


Sure, it’s intimidating. To diversify your sending infrastructure, you need to incorporate an entirely new email solution into your current framework. But to be frank, adding is way easier than totally subtracting and starting from scratch. Migrations can be complex. 

Be more confident in 2023 – hedge your bets by diversifying your email infrastructure. Not only will your performance benefit, so will your senders.  

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