The Art of Selecting an Effective Mailing List


Build it Yourself

There should be no list that you can purchase that will outperform the one you build yourself if you create the list with these important steps in mind:

  1. Survey your customers two or three times a year or each time they visit or make a purchase from your business. Critical data includes name, address, phone, email, sex, discerning demographics, what they like about doing business with you, and where else they make similar purchases.
  2. Analyze the data you have collected at least quarterly to determine: 

                       * How far do your customers travel to your location?

                       * How frequently do they visit your location/web site?

                       * Did a special offer or event trigger or influence their visit?

      3.   Customize all future communication based on what

              you have learned about each.

List Rental Criteria

There are approximately 40,000 mailing lists available for rent with a combined database of more than one billion names.

Every good mailing list has three important characteristics:

  • The list focuses on the market segments that you need it to focus on.

              How closely can the list select profiles “clone” or “match” the

              behavior and characteristics of your homegrown list?

  • The list is kept fresh and continuously updated.

              Lists that are updated as infrequently as once a year will be

              outdated and thus unnecessarily expensive.

  • The list has the quantity of names and geographical coverage that meets your needs.

              The days of blasting 20,000 names in a single mailing are over.

              You should only mail a quantity that your resources will

              allow you to properly follow up with a second touch

              either by mail, email or phone.

 For some mailings, a simple selection by age, income, household income or home-ownership are all that’s required. On the other hand, if you wish to more precisely target the perfect customer, you may wish to narrow your selection by pressing your list provider to select at least one added demographic characteristic. If you install fencing for example, I have had great success in selecting homeowners with children and/or pets. If your product or service is related to fitness or health food, you can identify people who have expressed interest in one more subscriptions to a health or fitness magazine.

 A good list broker or experienced marketing professional can help you identify target-market possibilities, and select a manageable list that will realize the best return.

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Explore posts in the same categories: Audience Targeting, CRM, Direct Mail, DIrect Marketing Employment

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