What is BIMI? (Brand Indicators for Message Identification)
BIMI, or Brand Indicators for Message Identification, is an emerging standard created to make it easier to get your logo displayed next to your message in the Inbox, prevent fraudulent emails and help deliverability too. It’s another key tool in building trust and a better subscriber experience.
Your messages are already authenticated with SPF, DKIM, and DMARC? In that case, why would you need BIMI? Good question. Let’s take a look at each record separately to see the differences:
BIMI - Adds your logo to your emails in the inbox so subscribers can quickly identify your messages and trust they’re from you.
SPF - Authenticates your email to identify the mail servers that are allowed to send messages from a particular domain.
DKIM - Adds a digital signature to emails to prove to inbox providers that your domain sent the message.
DMARC - Specifies to inbox providers how to handle emails that aren’t authenticated using SPF or DKIM (mostly used for spoofing prevention)
*Looking at this list of verification methods, BIMI is the only visual clue a typical email user can use to identify a message’s source and authenticity.
On top of helping recipients recognize and trust your brand in their Inbox, you get another layer of protection against phishing and spoofing attacks, attempting to impersonate your brand. Without the standard accompanying logo, recipients will be wary of messages claiming to be you. And when BIMI becomes more widely adopted, spamming and phishing will be even more obvious because it will lack recognizable logos.
How Does BIMI Work?
Like other email authentication standards, BIMI is essentially a text file. That text file follows a specific format and lives on your sending servers.
When a message is delivered, the recipient’s email service looks up the BIMI text file, and where it’s hosted, to ensure that the message can be verified. Once verified, the BIMI file tells the email service where to find the sender’s logo, and the email service pulls that logo into the Inbox.
Prerequisites for BIMI
Since brand logos are displayed only for authenticated messages, you must set up SPF, DKIM and DMARC first. For Leanplum clients, SPF and DKIM are already configured for you during your email onboarding. DMARC is a record which you need to set up on your own/with the help of your domain’s host provider. In addition, make sure your DMARC policy is either p=quarantine or p=reject.
Once these requirements are met, you can proceed to implement BIMI again with the help of your domain’s hosting service.
Please note that the BIMI setup and requirements are not related to Leanplum, so our support team will not be able to guide you through the process.