Five Tips For Renting Mailing Lists For Direct Mail Marketing

If you’re considering using direct mail as part of your marketing mix, it’s vital to understand what constitutes a good mailing list as well as ways to manage mailing list rentals to save money. The best mailing list you can use is your house file – the list of customers with whom you’ve already established a business relationship or who have inquired about your company’s products and services. Hands down, a house file out performs a rented list almost every time. Throughout my many years managing direct mail for large for profit and not for profit corporations, I always tested the house file against rented lists, and it was usually two for one; the house file outperformed rented lists twice as well.

While house files have an important place in the direct marketing mix, they cannot help you with prospecting or reaching new customers. That’s where rented mailing lists come into play. Mailing lists are never purchased but rather are rented for one or multiple times of use. Renters must enter into a contractual agreement with the list provider, promising never to sell or over mail to the list. How would they find out if you did? Each file is ‘seeded’ with names and addresses that are indistinguishable from the others on the list but contain the addresses of people employed to monitor and report list abuse. If you mail more than the amount of times you paid for, you will get fined by the list owner.

Before renting your first mailing list, there are five important considerations. Understanding each will not only help you save money on rental costs and mailings but can actually increase your response rate.

Five Mailing List Rental Considerations for Effective Direct Mail

1. Determine how many times you want to use the list.

Mailing lists are rented for a set number of uses. You cannot buy a list outright, nor can you rent it once and then use it multiple times without paying the list owner the appropriate rental fees. Consider renting a home. You wouldn’t pay for one month’s rent and then expect to live there your whole life rent-free, would you? List owners ‘seed’ mailing lists with recipients who track and monitor list usage. Begin your mailing list project by knowing how many times you plan to use your list. Most companies choose one time use until they know the list works for them.

2. Find the right list for your business.

Create a customer profile, outlining the demographics of the most likely customer. What are you selling? What do you want to get from your mailing? A pediatric dentist will rent an entirely different list from a hotel chain in a tourist town. Knowing your target customer and developing a specific profile helps you narrow down the myriad list choices. A basic customer profile outlines the gender, location, income, age bracket, and likes/dislikes of the customer. Companies that provide lists offer their customers many choices in selecting the right recipients. Often you will find selections along demographic information or recency of purchase or response. Choose the list selections that narrow down the target to the people most likely to respond to your offer. If the company offers names that have responded to offers in the last three months, a truism in direct marketing is that recent behaviors predict future behaviors, so it’s worth spending some money to rent these names. Companies who rent lists include InfoUSA, Walter Karl, and many others.

3. Order the appropriate output.

If you’re printing and mailing from a vendor, order an electronic file. The standard addressing method today is ink jet. Names, addresses, and bar codes that are easily read by post office machines are ink jet printed directly onto the mail piece. Small businesses who plan to send their own mailings may wish to order peel and stick labels. Ordering preprinted labels saves time. If ordering an electronic file, the file format called ASCI (pronounced “ask-eee”) easily converts into Excel, Access, or other standard software.

4. Choose response lists over compiled lists.

What’s the difference? A response lists is a mailing list based on purchasing behavior. Addresses on the list are from people who responded to various offers, whether it’s ordering from a direct television commercial or catalog to subscribing to a magazine. It’s a truism in direct marketing that past buying behavior is one of the best predictors of future behavior. There’s a greater statistical liklihood that people on the response list who bought gourmet cookware, for example, will respond to a cookbook offer.

The opposite of a response list is a compiled list. These lists are typically generated on publicly available data, such as telephone books. There’s no indication of what the person may be interested in. Basic demographic data is usually available and is based on appending records such as census data to a compiled list. These may be useful for offers limited to a geographic area and of mass appeal, such as a new auto repair store opening announcement. In that example, the automotive store simply wants addresses from a particular local area and doesn’t much care if the people at the addressses have bought car parts, accessories or other car related items. Chances are pretty good that folks living at the addresses have a car, so the compiled list may be worth using.

Compiled lists generally cost less to rent that response lists.

5. Save nixies.

Nixies aren’t little mythical creatures like fairies or elves. It’s the direct marketer’s lingo for returned mail. Many list companies offer a return policy. The policy varies according to the company, but some with whom I’ve worked have either given back pennies per bad address or a complete refund. Have a policy and system in place at your company to gather and process the returned mail. At the least, you’ll need to correct any house file addresses that are bad; and if you can get a few pennies credit for each returned piece of mail, so much the better.

The next time you need to rent a mailing list, use these considerations. You’ll get a better response, save money, and build your marketing efforts into a money making machine. When in doubt, consult with professional direct marketing experts to help you find and order the best mailing list for the job.

Jeanne Grunert is a well known direct and online marketing expert and the president of Seven Oaks Consulting. For 20 years, she led marketing departments in the retail, financial services, and publishing industries. She helped companies save money and increase response rates – and profits – on their direct mail and online marketing efforts. Today,

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Mailing Lists – 9 More Places to Buy a Direct Mail List

1. Trade Associations Mailing Lists

Trade Associations are unusually excellent sources of mailing lists. Better associations always include the industry’s top major players. Local associations like the local Chamber of Commerce in your area are usually good for a mailing list of local business names. You can select your direct mail list criteria by business size, number of employees, SIC code (the government’s industry classification of each business), or any of a multitude of other selection parameters.

Two great sources for finding associations are reference books from ColumbiaHouse Books, Inc., publishers of the State and Regional Associations Directory and The National Trade and Professional Associations of the United States. Mailing lists of the associations are available on labels or download.

Association mailing lists and data are also available in the giant reference Encyclopedia of Associations by The Gale Group on disk, CD, and on-line through Lexis-Nexis. This hard bound, three-volume set is the mother load of associations – showing detailed information on more than 23,000 local, state, national, and international associations. If you need a direct mail list from an association, if you can’t find the association name, address and phone in here, you can’t find it.

2. Mailing List Resources: List Reference Tools

Two excellent resources for investigating lists at the library are the SRDS Direct Marketing List Source(TM) and the Oxbridge Communications National Directory of Mailing Lists. We use both of these huge directories of lists in our own office – they’re thorough and easy to use. These reference tools are each about the size of the Manhattan phone book and contain nothing but mailing list data: who owns what mail list, number of records in each, source of names and direct mail list pricing. Both tools are available in major libraries.

3. Mailing List Brokers

Mailing list brokers are found in phone books in every major city. They can be heaven, supplying incredible information, or hell, looking for that fast buck. Make sure you ask tons of questions before handing over any money (Please see the article “12 questions to ask a mailing list vendor,” at ezinearticles.com and at Dobkin.com. While you pay for the list, the broker actually works independently for the list owner – so take that into consideration when you ask questions and negotiate price. The broker makes a commission on each list sale, and generally sells a variety of lists for multiple companies. A list agent works exclusively for the firm that sells the list.

A plethora of list managers and direct mail lists owners can be found in the direct mail trade magazines such as Multichannel Merchant Magazine: Target Marketing, and DM News.

4. Catalogs of Mailing Lists

Some list brokers are huge and have their own catalog of mailing lists. Some of these direct mail list catalogs are over 100 pages long! Some direct mail list catalogs are handy reference tools that will give you an idea of just what’s out there – what kind of lists are available and counts of how many records exist in the thousands of different mailing list categories. Please see the full article on mailing lists titled, “Free Catalogs of Mailing Lists,” at DanielleAdams.com.

Want to know how many dentists there are? It’s a piece of cake: 190,168 are members of the ADA. Want to know if there is a mailing list of picky ale drinkers? Find the mailing list of “Ale in the Mail-Continuity Members:” 70,973 of them. Selling an accounting product? Try the mailing list from the Accounting Institute Seminar Attendees – all 78,634 of them. Looking for college professors? Did you want the 43,347 who teach English, or the 18,184 who teach history, or the 8,477 in marketing, or the 9,194 philosophy teachers, or the…

If you need additional information – like how many doctors who specialize in allergies and are the head of their practice with four or more employees can be found in Pennsylvania – call any of these catalog houses and ask them to run a mailing list count with those parameters. You’ll be able to get that information in about ten minutes. Hugo Dunhill, American Business Lists, and Edith Roman to name just a few. Phone numbers for mailing list brokers can be found in the books Uncommon Marketing Techniques and How To Market A Product For Under $500!

5. Lists on CD

Several companies now offer lists of every business or every person in the U.S. on CD-ROM. These products allow you to create your own list criteria and generate your own precisely targeted direct mail lists. Some of the better programs make it easy and fast to use their CD-ROM products.

6. Internet

One of the best resources for lists is the Internet. There’s no getting around it now, the Internet is here to stay — you might as well get used to it. It’s a great – probably the best – research tool available for almost anything, if you can filter out the crap from the good stuff. But… isn’t that the way with all research tools: you gotta figure out which is the good stuff that you can use, and which is the bad stuff that you’ve just spent the last two hours looking over and have now figured out is pretty worthless. Yea, the Internet is like that – in spades.

7. Trade Shows Mailing Lists

Trade shows are great marketing events, and trade show lists are also great marketing tools. You can usually buy mailing lists of both attendees and of exhibitors. Check out two great websites: one is TSNN.com and the other tradeshowweek.com for trade show information. The Tradeshow Week Data Book is a great tool published by the editors of Tradeshow Week Magazine.

8. The Enemy

You’d be surprised how many of your competitors will sell your their customers’ names to mail to. If not competitors, how about asking other businesses who serve your market if you can purchase their mailing lists. Warranty lists and data, registrations, some firms just seem to warehouse data that would make a great direct mail list to someone.

9. House List

Of course, the best list of all – bar none – is your own direct marketing list of current and past customers. These are the folks that know you and trust you; they’ve experienced that great customer service you offer and are now willing to buy something else from you if you would only let them know it’s available. Spend some extra time in this most important area – of list research: tighten your list criteria, do your homework, spend time in research, and find the best mail lists you can possibly find. Then test several.

Selecting a direct mail list isn’t as rewarding as generating the creative for a new glitzy 4-color brochure, or an exciting mailing package. But it shows up where it counts the most – in your bottom line. The better your direct mail list, the better your response. Guaranteed.

It’s worth the extra time and money to target your audience with precision and increase the chance you’ll come up a winner at the post office. There is no single more important factor in creating a greater response to a mailing than mailing to the best possible list. Whatever you do, don’t settle for a mediocre list unless you want mediocre results. The better the list, the greater the response.

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The Basics of Direct Mail Lists

Direct mail lists provide opportunities for businesses to acquire, retain and create loyal customers. Yet which lists are typically the best performing lists? How do you go about finding mailing lists? And once you’ve found a list, how do you know if your investment paid off?

Direct Mail List Basics

Direct mail lists generally fall into three categories:

Company owned lists: These are direct mail (or email) lists that you’ve created on your own. Many online business include an opt-in box on their website so that customers and visitors can choose to provide their email address in exchange for information, news, white papers and other gifts. Companies can also create their own “house lists” as such lists are called by using records of previous purchases and leads to create a basic mailing list. For direct mail, you can use physical addresses without tacit permission. For email marketing, always use an opt-in method and only conduct permission-based marketing to avoid getting branded as a spammer.

Response lists: Response lists are rented by companies that specialize in mailing lists, called list brokers. Such a list is based on past purchasing or response behavior and may include catalog mailing lists, direct mail or direct television buyers, or magazine subscribers. Many companies make money by renting their list out to other companies. The idea behind using such a list is that past purchasing behavior is the best indicator of future purchasing behavior. In other words, if someone responded to a direct TV ad for jewelry, chances are better that they’ll respond to another offer for jewelry. List brokers often add additional selections for an extra fee, such as 3 month buyers. This allows you to target people who have recently bought such an item. Again, based on years of data from many industries, these are people most likely to respond again to similar offers, which is why direct marketers seek out such lists.

Compiled lists: Compiled lists are created or compiled from public records. Such lists used to be based on DMV records but now are mainly typed into computers directly from telephone books. Sometimes public data such as census data is appended to the list, providing some ability to sort by income and other factors from census data. Compiled lists are the least expensive but also the least likely to respond to specific offers. Going back to the jewelry example, you may rent a compiled list of people living in a high income zip code, thinking that they are likely to buy jewelry from a direct mail order catalog. But you have no way of knowing from the compiled list if such people are comfortable shopping online, by phone or from a catalog. A response list indicates that in the past, such consumers have done so – and are more likely to do so again.
There are general list brokers who offer a wide range of mailing lists and specialist such as Market Data Retrieval that focus solely on industry, such as education in the MDR example. Ask colleagues for the best list brokers in your industry.

Renting Mailing Lists

Once you’ve found a company offering lists, search their catalog or talk to a list broker on the phone. Share your ideal client profile; who are you targeting? The list brokers will suggest several lists and email or fax you data cards. Such cards provide the facts about the list: who is renting it, whether it is compiled or response, and data selects available. Data selects are optional methods to use a computer to narrow down the most likely prospects to respond to your offer. Select may include age, gender, products purchased, or recent shopping behavior.

Lists have a base cost per thousand. Typically list companies will not rent fewer than 10,000 records, so take the cost per thousand records, multiple that by 10, and that gives you the minimum amount of money you will have to spend on a list. There may be additional charges added on for various selections or to actually generate the list from the computer.

Make sure that the list has been updated recently. Good list companies run their lists through several databases obtained from the Direct Marketing Association and the US Post Office. These include removing the names of deceased persons, updating lists with the new addresses of people who have moved, and suppressing (removing) people who have requested to be on the “Do Not Mail” list or preference list from the Direct Marketing Association. All of this may add costs at the beginning of a list rental process, but think about the money wasted mailing pieces to people who cannot respond. If they’ve moved, died, or hate junk mail, why mail to them in the first place? You’re spending money on the creative design, the printing, the mailing house costs and postage, so save the money and don’t mail to those people.

Testing and Use of Direct Mail Lists

Although the minimum amount of names on n a typical direct mail list rental is around 5,000 to 10,000 names, many companies will allow you to rent a smaller segment for testing. Be sure to code your direct mail pieces with a unique phone number, source code or another method to track responses so you can see which list performed the best.

Mailing lists are rented for one time use or multiple, unlimited uses. You’ll be asked up front to specify which use you intend and most companies ask for a sample mail piece. One of the most frequently asked questions people new to direct mail ask me is, “Why can’t I just pay for one time use and then reuse the list, since most lists are provided electronically nowadays?” The answer is simple: you will be caught! Mailing list companies include addresses called “seeds” on their list which look to you and me like just any other name on the list, but actually go back to the company or to someone employed by the company to monitor the list. If you’re caught using a mailing list more times than you paid for it, you are subject to legal prosecution, fines or both. It’s not pretty. Don’t do it.

Direct Mail in Today’s Market

Direct mail has been around since the late 1800′s when catalogs opened a world of new goods to rural Americans. Although a large number of consumers have moved their shopping online, many still prefer to look at an old-fashioned catalog before buying. Direct mail can entice and invite consumers to visit a website to order. A good mix of old-fashioned direct mail marketing, postcard marketing, and a robust website with search engine optimization techniques in mind is a winning combination to acquire, retain and create loyal customers – and make money in the process.

Get Marketing Help – Fast

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Direct Mailing List Tips Self Publishers & Business Owners Must Know

Many self publishers, book publishers, entrepreneurs, and home-based and small business owners are in the dark about mailing list rentals — how to order targeted, direct mailing lists – say for a direct marketing campaign, what to look for, and what to beware of. And they often make a few expensive mistakes. The following tips and trade secrets will help you avoid some of these mistakes and help you make better decisions when you seek out quality mailing list services.

First of all, generally, you rent, not buy mailing lists. They remain in the ownership of the mailing list company and are usually not for sale.

Many business owners rent lists but don’t use them right away, which is a mistake. Most lists change considerably in 30 days or less. Some lists, like mailing lists of public libraries, prisons, hospitals, hospital gift shops, elementary schools, high schools, colleges, universities, daily newspapers, TV stations and radio stations will have very few changes. They are fairly stationary so not as likely to move. Bookstore lists, new age bookstores lists, organization lists, specialty lists, MLM lists and business mailing lists may have a high rate of return. To avoid a lot of returns, rent the selected lists just prior to making your mailing.

Be careful about renting any mailing list that goes to individuals: consumer mailing lists, seniors mailing lists, residential mailing lists, homeowners mailing lists and opportunity seekers mailing lists, for example. With 20% of the population moving every year you may get significant returns.

But do expect some returns. As often as we mail using lists, we always get returns (called ‘nixies’ in the trade) from the post office. People move, forwarding orders expire, people expire, post office boxes close, and businesses close their doors.

Mailing list management and upkeep is expensive. It takes a lot of time and labor for companies to compile, add to, clean and mail to their lists and other necessary maintenance. They also use expensive mailing list software programs which can have costly bugs of their own.

To help you plan ahead, before you order your mailing lists, ask when you can expect the order to arrive. This can vary considerably from company to company. Some companies can take up to two weeks or more.

Mailing lists can usually be ordered in at least three formats – peel and stick (pressure-sensitive) labels or Cheshire (18 pound, spreadsheet-size computer paper–less common these days) or on a floppy disk (used less often these days) or CD. You order peel and stick labels if they’re going to be affixed to your mailing piece by hand. Or if you know how to import the lists you can order them on CD. If your mailing house is going to do your mailing they’ll probably prefer the floppy disk or CD – check with them on this before you order.

Mailing houses used to require the Cheshire format instead of peel and stick labels before the advent of computer technology and CD ROM. They have machines that cut the printed Cheshire sheets into labels and glue them to the envelopes. When ordering lists on CD, specify the format you want to use for conversion, usually ASCII comma-delimited. You must know how to import it when you get the disk though. The mailing lists will always be for one-time use only even if they’re on a CD or disk. And some mailing list companies offer instant downloads of lists.

Also if a mailing house is going to do your mailing, they may want the labels to be merged if there is more than one list, or bar-coded, which will save considerably on postage. If you can’t answer their technical questions, have your mailing house call your mailing list rental company to work out the final details.

Consider the cost to mail out your mailing piece. You might want to test a small number on the list first if you have an expensive or heavy package.

When you do mailings First Class, you’ll get returns from the post office at no additional charge. If you mail Third Class (bulk mail), you won’t get returns. They will be tossed out at the post office, UNLESS you’ve printed ‘Return Service Requested’ on the envelope. Then each return (nixie) will cost additional postage (based on first class), or ‘Change Service Requested’ (cost based on piece regardless of weight.) Make sure to check current costs with the post office because they change their rates AND rules periodically.

Always send any nixies back to your mailing list company, even if there aren’t enough for a credit, which is almost always offered. This is a good practice especially if you plan to mail again to the same list soon. They usually have a time limit as to when they can accept the nixies for credit because the lists you rented will become outdated fairly soon.

When you contract to rent a list, some mailing list companies may require a sample mailing piece. This is so the company can determine if you’re mailing a competitive or objectionable piece.

The business of mailing list rentals is based on the honor system to a degree, but this honor system also has a built-in alarm: owners protect their data by planting decoy names (seeds) in the mailing lists they rent. If a renter contracts to use a list on a one-time basis and uses it a second time, the decoy will receive the unauthorized mailing and report the misuse to the list owner. The decoys are often friends or relatives of the staff of the companies. Also, many mailing list companies employ companies that specialize in tracking or monitoring mailings to detect any misuse. Since decoys are different for each list order, the renter who abuses a contract is easy to trace.

Mailing lists are protected by copyright and trade secret law. Any violation of a list agreement is strictly upheld by the courts. Once a list rental contract has been broken, the list owner has legal recourse to sue for compensatory and punitive damages. Punitive damages could amount to as much as three times the value of the list and more.

All list owners have good reason to be so protective of their data. List rental is a multibillion-dollar business. There are literally thousands of lists available for rental in the United States alone.

If all else fails, you can enlist the help of a mail list broker. Brokers usually collect their fees from the mailing list company. Check this out first.

In any case caveat emptor! In any case you can reap rewards handsomely from sending out fliers, press releases, press kits, review copies of books and other materials via the direct mailing lists you choose.

These tips and trade secrets should help self publishers, book publishers, entrepreneurs, home based or work-at-home and small business owners make better decisions when working with mailing lists, mailing list rentals and mailing list companies.

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Mailing Lists – The Two Kinds of Lists and Two of the Best Places to Purchase Them

In this, the first of this two-part article set, you’ll learn from our discussion the types of mailing lists, and two of the best places to buy lists. In the second part you’ll learn the other 9 places to buy a mailing list.

There are two types of direct mail lists, determined by their origin: compiled direct mail lists and response mailing lists.

Compiled Direct Mail Lists

Compiled mailing lists are a common source of name and address records that have been gathered, collected, and entered into a database. The names may have been acquired through public records such as vehicle owner registrations, court transcripts, or private sources such as warranty cards or purchasers at a store.

The bulk of compiled mailing lists are generated from categories in phone books across the U.S. Examples of a few of the compiled lists available from phone books would be a list of all the photography studios, or a listing of all the luggage dealers in the United States. Or a mailing list of all the plumbing supply dealers, or Chevy or Ford agencies.

Most industries have trade directories that are usually compiled industry data from various sources; most are verified by phone and make pretty good direct mail lists. A directory of pet product manufacturers, or of heating and cooling contractors would be good examples of a compiled industry direct mail lists.

Keep in mind that compiled information – like fish – gets old rather quickly and doesn’t age particularly well. Mailings lists fall into the top of that category – the fresher the names, the better. The older the names, the less accurate – and the greater your returns.

Response Direct Mail lists

Response direct mail lists are usually databases of consumers who have inquired or purchased from a direct response ad, direct mail catalog, from a direct mail offer, direct-selling TV ad, direct response newspaper ad, or other direct response offer. The most common response direct mail lists are from catalog merchants.

Before you consider purchasing any direct mail list, analyze the database of your own customers. Ask yourself precisely what commonalities they have, then look for these characteristics in a new list mailing database.

Start searching for a new mailing list based on your perfect target audience. Find a list that closely matches the definable characteristics of your own customers. If this exact mailing list isn’t available, see how close you can come to buying the most perfect business mail list – and test mail to it in smaller numbers. Measure and track response.

Today’s direct mail can be very precisely targeted due to the precision of the mailing list data available. If you can tightly specify a mailing list, you can probably find a list perfectly matched to your specifications. The more you qualify the names on your mail list, the tighter you specify your perfect mailing list segments, the more response, and the less wasted advertising expense you’ll have in your direct mail campaign. The higher your response, the better your chances of success and profit.

Your selection of a direct mail list has more to do with your success or failure than any other single element in your mailing. Before any mailing, calculate what percent response you need to have to break even, and see if it’s realistic. If it’s over 2%, better rethink about mailing.

The precise targeting of mailing makes direct mail one of the most effective, cost efficient ways to market as long as you define your audience up front and match your direct mail list to your audience.

Delivery of your direct mail depends on the accuracy and recency of your list. Better quality, more recent mailing lists have much better delivery rates. A poor list can mean up to 20% or 30% of your standard mail (bulk-rate) won’t be delivered. 10% more will be delivered, but you won’t know to whom. Of that 20% to 30%, some of your direct mail pieces will be returned to you, beat up beyond recognition by the postal service and certainly of no further value.

Some pieces get delivered, but to the wrong address. Other pieces of your mail just get lost, and no one really knows where they went. In contrast, when you purchase a recent, accurate direct mail list, delivery can be as high as a whopping 95% – 97%!

Some of the best delivery percentages of direct mail mailing lists can be found in magazine publisher’s list of their magazine subscribers.

Magazine mailing lists have some of the highest delivery rates available. For good reason: Subscriber lists are naturally very targeted to their annually-qualified magazine readers. Publishers pay for returns: so their mailing lists have high deliverability rates as publishers are extremely prompt with their name and address corrections.

Most magazine publishers will rent their mailing list for non-competing offers (such as anything other than similar magazines). If you see a magazine that looks like it will be a good target for your direct mail campaign, call the magazine publisher and ask if their subscriber mailing list is for rent. Most larger publications will offer their list through a mailing list broker, so you’ll be referred to that firm.

1. Magazine Publishers Mailing Lists

There are over 10,000 magazines published in the U.S.. Chances are good that you can get a magazine subscription subscriber mail list that goes straight to your perfectly targeted buyers. If you’re not sure what magazines would have the best mail list to reach your target market, there are some easy-to-use magazine directories found in the reference section of most libraries. (They’re online, too – but they’re subscription-only and pretty expensive!) You can read the magazine’s profile and see if their audience would make a good mail list for you to mail offers for your products.

The best directories of magazines are Bacon’s Directory of Magazines, and Oxbridge Communications Standard Periodical Directory. If you can’t find the exact targeted magazine filled with the eager-to-buy-your-product subscribers you are looking for in either of these directories, the publication doesn’t exist. You can find any industry and every single magazine that is sent to that industry – in under 10 minutes in these powerful directories. As a practicing marketer, I pretty much live in these directories.

2. Catalog Merchants Direct Marketing Mailing Lists

Catalog houses earn a good portion of their revenue from the sale of their list. Call the catalog house phone number and ask for their corporate business office, then ask who handles their mailing list sales. Almost all catalog houses sell their mail lists – it’s a big profit center than can account for as much as 20% of their revenues.

Catalogs can be found in The Directory of Mail Order Catalogs from Grey House Publishing (www.greyhouse.com) This directory is an awesome publication and the best resource in the catalog industry. In each catalog description and write up, it gives the number of catalogs mailed, and name of the broker who handles list sales.

This is the first of two articles on mailing lists. In the second part of this article, we’ll discuss the next 9 places to buy a direct mail list.

Bio, Jeffrey Dobkin
If you’re struggling with poor response from your direct marketing campaign, you can solve this problem and get guaranteed help; gain an advantage fast – and get amazing results by reading practical how-to marketing ti

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