Question: We are looking to start an email marketing campaign and we see a lot of companies selling targeted lists. Is this a good approach for us?
Recently, I wrote a blog about rethinking your email marketing strategy. This post was mostly to bring awareness to the lack of interest in email marketing that many people have. This came both from the statistics and from a thoughtful conversation I had on Facebook with some great marketing minds.
However, email marketing, when done well does still have value. When you are focused on sharing great content with a 1:1 marketing approach, you can have success. This becomes even more true when a low conversion rate can mean large dollars due to the type of products or services you sell.
So for many companies, the challenge is who do we email to? If you only have a small group of customers then email lists can seem a bit futile. But the reality is you are better served to spend your time and energy emailing a small targeted list of people who want your information than a whole bunch of people that don’t. This is precisely why buying an email list is almost never a good idea.
But don’t take it from me, let’s see what the experts have to say. In a recent article on Hubspot, a company that builds solutions for inbound marketing, they discuss why buying or renting email lists almost never makes sense. In short they provide the following as reasons which I fully endorse.
- Email Marketing Integration: Most legitimate email marketing software will not let you enter email addresses that didn’t opt-in.
- No Opt-In: People on your purchased lists did not ask to receive email from you and they don’t know who you are. Chances are they will not open or read your emails, but you are still paying for their contact info.
- SEO Damage: Your website’s SEO can actually be harmed because as people mark your emails for spam it will point to your sites IP address. This will damage your site traffic and your sender score which can take years to repair.
- My Favorite…You Aren’t A A$$: This was my favorite from Hubspot’s list. They used the word jerk but I took it one step further. Anyhow, content marketing is about education and inspiration. People want to become associated with your brand because you add value. This should give you plenty of food for thought.
Has your company been buying or considering the purchase of email lists? Maybe it isn’t such a good idea….
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