At first glance, the thought of buying or renting email lists of prospective clients is rather seductive. Why wouldn’t it be? You pay a nominal amount of money, and boom, an entire list of people who will become your next clients! But buyer beware, things are never what they seem.
At Straight North, we always highly advise against using purchased or rented lists. Here’s why:
- These lists are often filled with a lot of junk, filler email addresses to meet the list size quota you paid for. This means that a great deal of email addresses are invalid, so your email campaign likely won’t even reach a large amount of the inboxes you were banking on.
- These recipients have no idea who you are. Sure, as a work around, you could (and should) send them a nice introductory email explaining who you are and why they should care. Though before you do that, consider how you feel when emails from unknown senders hit your inbox, wasting your invaluable time. Annoying, isn’t it? When you’re annoyed, how likely are you to read the email or consider purchasing from this sender?
- It’s bad practice. There’s really no way around it. When you’re emailing people who don’t know who you are or how they got on your list, you’re a spammer. I know you don’t have malicious intentions, but at the end of the day, if you email to these lists, you’re a spammer.
- You’re setting yourself up for failure with email metrics. With a high content of junk, filler email addresses, you will have a significantly lower open rate than you’re used to, which generally leads to a lower click rate, leading to a lower conversion. Since these people do not know how you found their email address, you’ll likely have an extremely high mark as spam rate and unsubscribe rate.
- When thinking of your sales process, wouldn’t you rather spend time communicating with people who want to hear from you? In order to target real prospects, you need a real list of prospects!
a. Keep in mind that if you’re spamming people, you are jeopardizing all your email campaigns, going forward. Read more about the risks here.
Developing real prospect email lists is not an easy feat. Unfortunately, there aren’t any shortcuts; you have to roll up your sleeves and do it. However, once you have that list, the hard work will most certainly be worth it!