It’s not often that startups battle rivals in plain sight, but one such mobile messaging service provider, Postscript, took to the Twitterverse earlier this month after receiving an attention-seeking letter from a rival.
The insightful letter was in response to a customer case study Postscript wrote and posted on its website about nutrition company BUBS Natural, which BUBS Natural told Postscript after finding its list shrinking rather than growing. His list off stage.
Calling out Postscript for the “false, misleading and deceptive claims” made about him in those published articles, he pointedly asked Postscript to stop posting on the letter.
Asked what was going on between the two outfits afterward, Focus, through a spokesperson, responded via email, “Unfortunately, Postscript has a history of false claims and deception. We have sent numerous cease and desist letters over the years because you made, acknowledged and corrected false claims about Attentive. We also filed a federal lawsuit against Postscript in January 2023 for continued and willful infringement of our patents for two-tap mobile technology, which improves brands’ ability to add customers to their SMS lists in a respectful way. (Attention shared a copy of the complaint with TechCrunch.)
Some of the “beef” between the two may seem like ticks to outsiders. For example, Attentive’s cease-and-desist letter complained about the timeline on Postscript’s marketing, saying that former customer BUBS Natural had been an Attentive customer for about three years, while Attentive BUBs had been a customer for about half that time.
In response to Attentive’s letter, Postscript co-founder Alex Beller published one Angry-sounding tweetPostScript has previously heard from Attentive and called the company a “bully.” He also published “Response Full”, which tries to strike a more measured sound.
The response reads: “PostScript takes your allegations seriously and has provided a helpful response below. But it is important to note the broader context in which he makes those charges. PostScript is making gains in the market. It also recently brought attention to a reprehensible practice in the industry by some SMS platforms: Maging a customer’s proprietary SMS list to prevent or interfere with the customer’s attempts to switch providers. Given these circumstances, Attentive’s increasingly weak legal claims seem aimed at enhancing its underperformance in the market and distracting from its own fair competition practice.
Russell Weaver, a law professor at the University of Louisville, told TechCrunch what are the ways to protect yourself from defamation or defamation. One is to file a lawsuit, which Weaver said is more complicated and can often result in further investigation or defense of the company. Another is to try the quit-and-leave method, as Attentive did.
In the meantime, the postscript methods seem to be working. In response to one of Beller’s tweets on the matter, he said a concerned customer might switch vendors. BGC@bryan_clark_) He tweeted.“This makes me want to switch from focus to postscript. I wonder what the ROI on this thread will be for you guys.”
When asked if it had an impact, Postscript responded via email that it “doubled its ‘win rate’ on Attentive in the last quarter.”
Meanwhile, TechCrunch spoke with TJ Ferreira, co-founder of BUBS Naturals, about subscribers not seeing the promised lift. He says he has no regrets about making the switch, which drew more attention than he expected.
“On one front, it’s the younger players who don’t know how to play this,” Ferrara said. “On the other front,” he says, referring to Attentive, “you have a 400-pound gorilla holding people’s data hostage.”
When Ferrara requested custom data from the account about that data holdup, Focus responded within six business days and a follow-up request was responded to within an hour. In addition, “the policy with the customers makes it clear that the customer owns the data. Focus will facilitate the export of subscriber lists as per customer request and endeavor to provide them in a timely manner in accordance with our contractual obligations.