You’ve just started a business and need customers, fast. You decide on using email marketing, which is a good choice – as research by McKinsey shows that it’s 40 times more effective at getting new customers than other means such as social media marketing.
The only problem is that you don’t have anyone to email. Of course, many places around the internet (and even digital marketing agencies) can offer you email lists for a small fee. While this might seem like a good solution, it’s the worst mistake your business could make. Here are a few reasons:
It’s not allowed
To manage any email marketing campaign, you need an email service provider like MailChimp or Campaign Monitor. When you sign up for these services you’ll be asked if the people on the list have consented to receiving your emails. No service provider wants to be associated with sending unsolicited spam, so if they suspect you’ve bought a list you could be blacklisted from the system. So how can these service providers detect that your list is purchased? Here’s how…
It’s a bad list
It’s rare for a purchased list to be a quality one, and it’s often filled with defunct addresses and obvious typing and spelling errors. This will cause a large percentage of the addresses to bounce back or even worse, be sent to spam sites. This can lead to major email hosts like Gmail and Yahoo flagging your emails as spam, further damaging your reputation and bringing your actions to the attention of your email service provider.
The average person gets dozens of emails a day and won’t hesitate to delete one that doesn’t matter to them. When you work with a list you’ve purchased, you can’t customise or personalise your email in any way, and research by Experian tells us that personalisation can improve email open rates by as much as 26%.
When you ask for an email and someone volunteers to provide it, it means that they’re interested in your business. This means you could then ask them more personalised questions such as their birthday or favourite product/service. Using these details at a later stage will allow you to further personalise your email campaigns and deliver more relevant content.
When it comes to email addresses, quality beats quantity. It’s better to honestly build your own than to take a shortcut that won’t deliver results and leave you with egg on your face.