The Return Path Hackathon and Five New Sites

Posted by Tom Sather 

Every quarter, Return Path holds a hackathon contest, where individuals get to choose any type of project they want to work on, and after less than three days of blood, sweat and tears, each team unveils their project to the company where their peers judge which is the best project based on a number of criteria.

This quarter was my first time participating in a hackathon and was one of the best experiences I’ve had at Return Path (which is saying a lot considering I’ve been here over 9 years!). Our executives gave us the following challenge for the quarter: create a live, functioning microsite. We each assembled a team, turned an idea into a working site and did it all in less than 3 days. The talent and ingenuity of the five teams that participated in this hackathon blew me away. But don’t take my word for it. Check out each of their sites: – Receive a customized report showing the impact of Gmail’s tabbed inbox on your own marketing program, as well as your industry and know if you’re faring better or worse than others – know which tab your mail was delivered in Gmail and what the read rate was for your campaigns – Know how your email campaigns are performing relative to your competition – Understand how much your email list is shared and overlaps with your competition – Test your subject line copywriting intuition with this fun game by guessing which subject line was read the most and which subject line was delivered to spam the least

Not only did the hackathon give us a chance to collaborate with co-workers of different talents and backgrounds, we also created something useful for businesses, our customers and Return Path. And the greatest part of this hackathon? It cost very little to create each site, and what we gained from the process was priceless.

Which site won the hackathon? We have one week left in the competition, so be sure to check out each site and share your favorite ones on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

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About Tom Sather

Email data and deliverability expert Tom Sather has worked with top-tier brands to diagnose and solve inbox placement and sender reputation issues as a strategic consultant with Return Path. As the company’s senior director of research, Tom is a frequent speaker and writer on email marketing trends and technology. His most recent analysis of new inbox applications’ effects on consumer behavior was widely cited across leading business media outlets including the Financial Times, Ad Age, and Media Post.

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