Eric Wittlake is a digital and B2B marketer with a background in analytics and online media. Based in Portland, Oregon, he runs the media group at Babcock & Jenkins. To read his original post on email list guides, click here.
Whether you want to promote your upcoming webcast, send a multi-channel campaign, or give your telemarketing team a list of contacts to call down on, it starts with a list.
So should you rent, buy or build an email list? How much do the different options cost and when are they most appropriate? This guide will get you started.
Buying a B2B List
Historically purchased lists have had a bad reputation for quality. While it is true that quality is lower, the relatively low cost still works out well for many companies. Consider purchased lists if these points are true:
Expect to pay anywhere from a $0.50 top $1.50 per contact for purchased lists, with some specialized (and much higher quality) sources costing as much as $3 per name.
For more information on purchasing lists, see Buying B2B Email Marketing Data: Challenges and Recommendations.
Renting a B2B List
List rentals are still the only way to access lists from some trade publications, and these lists often support the most extensive industry-relevant selection criteria. List rentals can also reach a larger portion of a given target audience than purchased lists.
Consider list rentals if you meet the following criteria:
Expect to pay a premium for the extra data available through list rentals, with the cost per name ranging from about $0.15 to $0.60 for one time use.
Building a B2B List
List builds are the ultimate for targeted data. Lists are generally built with a combination of research and calling and can be built for almost any criteria.
List builds quickly become very expensive. However, in the following circumstances a list build is often worth the investment.
For a relatively broad custom built list that is telemarketing verified, expect to pay at least $5 per name. List builds with very specific target criteria can quickly exceed $20 per name.
A Note of Caution
Before you jump into any list, make certain lists are really right for you. Lists have two distinct disadvantages versus alternative marketing options:
How do you decide between buying, renting or building lists, or do you opt to only use lists built organically over time? Share your view in the comments below.