Microns: Theory and Economics (Part 5)


How does the economics of microns work? How much does it cost? Who pays for it?

The cost of sending an email is low – as compared to many other channels of communication. Spamming is expensive in terms of domain reputation and the low hit rate thanks to the increasingly good spam filters of the email inbox providers. But a low cost still does not mean zero. There is a finite cost in terms of email infrastructure that needs to be accounted for.

Microns can be very useful for businesses and publishers as a way to build temporary connections and lasting relationships. They can do so today by using an email service provider. Because emails are priced on a per email basis (10-40 cents per thousand, or about 1-4 paise per email), the temptation is always to pack in as much content as possible in a single email with the hope that something ‘clicks’.

This is the rationale for making microns available at a fraction of the cost of emails. By lowering the cost element, the focus can move to the content – and the recipient. Subscribers are paying for the mail – with their attention. The goal can now be how to build microns into habits – so they are welcomed and not ignored, they are read not surfed, they are remembered not blanked out. Brands have hardly used email for intelligent communication.

Consider this email I got recently from Amazon:

Look at what it doesn’t tell me – what is the book about, why I should buy the book, what will I learn while reading the book, who wrote the book. The assumption is I already know all that – but what if I don’t. Just reminding me that I accessed the book page recently is not as useful as a few gentle informative nudges. This is the gap microns fill – they prime us for purchase, providing the necessary info prior to the decision.

This is the hope of MyToday and Netcore: that a billion people can get 3-5 useful microns daily. The brands sending will then want to talk to Netcore over other types of emails, and the subscribers may have interests which could be monetised. By making the email inbox as the container, the need to download and manage another app is eliminated – making the attention that much more valuable.

Microns and MyToday can become the next attention platform – built on the email inbox, rather than a new app. Microns can be delivered where every digital user’s content is already focused many times a day. What has been missing is to create that something useful which invites rather than irritates – that is the world of microns and MyToday. Welcome to a new world of micron-omics!

Published by

Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.