Photo by TheeErin
Imagine, for a moment, your perfect direct mail list. Does this list include only those potential customers who have expressed some level of interest in your product? Do you repeatedly spend too much money sending direct mail pieces to addresses that have shown little or no interest in your product? After each mailing, do you spend your valuable time and resources trying to, and ultimately, guesstimating the effectiveness of your list?
If you’ve answered “Yes” to any of the above, consider the following:
How do people even end up in mailing lists?
The three most common ways that people get into a mailing list are: (1) purchasing something with a credit card, (2) magazine subscriptions, and (3) filling out a warranty for a new product. Wow, isn’t that a great mailing list? You’ve just included almost every person across the country!
Who are your customers?
Although, there is no such list of customers who will buy your product / service from you 100%, there are ways to bring up the likelihood of a purchase. For this, you can segment profiles of a person through their previous purchases, industry studies, amount of income they make, hobbies, education, number of children, and other collected information.
Buying or renting a mail list?
When you buy a mailing list, you are buying the rights for it to be used multiple times. This could be for a period of a year or up to a certain amount of uses. Under this agreement, you may do whatever you wish with the data as long as you do not sell the information to others. For these reasons, this type of list is more expensive than a single use rental list.
A single-use mailing list is an agreement for you to use a list only once, and have no rights over the data. In some cases, the client never directly sees the original list, and instead has to go through a third party to obtain the information. Other times, the supplier will trust the client, and directly supply the list.
The biggest benefit of renting an email list is the low cost of single use lists. However, on the downside, you can only use this list for one campaign which means it will not be useful in the long run.
What matters the most regardless of whether you rent or buy lists is that quality is always better than quantity.
Before buying / renting a mailing list you should ask yourself these questions…
- When was this list last updated, and how often will it be updated?
- Which companies / industries have used this list before?
- Have people on this list ordered products through mail? If so, how often did they do so?
- When did they last purchase something?
- What offers worked, and what offers did not work?
Manually building your own lead list…
Sure, it will take more time to prospect and acquire mailing addresses but it could be a great opportunity for your company. Small and medium-sized businesses can especially benefit from this change in mindset. We will go through a few suggestions on how to get started.
One way is to ask existing customers if they would like to join the mailing list: (1) through signing up at an site location, and (2) attaching a form for them to fill out on a direct mail package.
Another way is to ask clients for referrals of potentially interested new people. In the process, you can add a cash or gift incentive for each person they refer.
A third way is to seek prospective clients through other means such as: (1) online giveaway contests, (2) offline events like trade shows and conferences, (3) run a special offer with a partner site, and (4) convert website traffic into physical mailing addresses.
It comes down to what you need…
The type of mailing list you choose should be based the amount of times you need to use it for, if it is high quality or not, and relevant to the demographic you are targeting.
Stick with a mailing list technique that works but also experiment with alternative ways to building a mailing list. Over time, you will build a bigger and better lead list which will not be perfect, but close to it.
So tell us, what features would your perfect mailing list have?
BOOST from Epic Playground provides patent pending technology to generate the perfect mailing list and measure the effectiveness of your direct mail campaigns. See how geolocation can help BOOST your direct mail sales!