Segment your market (optional) – Ideally, break your market into tiny segments, large enough to collect statistically significant data, while small enough to balance your investment risks. Try testing two or more offer variations to see which one performs better on a small scale.
Alternately, businesses may have in place a policy not to disclose personal information of customers to third parties for the third parties’ direct marketing purposes if the customer has exercised an option to opt-out of such information-sharing.
But… there is a different way to build a targeted opt-in email list. I’m talking about a subscription form on your website. Before you start with bulk email marketing, get your website up and running. Or, probably you already have a site where you advertise your products and services. Set up a subscription form somewhere on your web page and get others to sign up for your mailing lists. You can use this free newsletter plugin for wordpress to place a signup form on your WordPress blog. The beauty in this is that the list of emails will be confirmed, and your database will only contain the people who are interested in your offers. It’s not as quick and easy as generating or harvesting email addresses but it’s a more reliable way. You won’t send unsolicited emails as you have a proof that the recipient has subscribed himself to your mailing list.
While this is a relatively simple example, it still exemplifies the standard split-test for a majority of early stage startups. Sending out a test with four different variants to 1/8 of your subscribers doesn’t make much sense if you only have 300 people on your list!
VALUE OF TIME: $99 for 100,000 email addresses. Sure, some email lists are so cheap that there is not much money risk in trying. However, the time and hassle in dealing with a low quality email list can add up a lot of dollars. There’s also the risk of your getting your IP address blacklisted for using a low quality email list. In addition, there is the potential risk/harm to your brand / company name.
Media employed. The medium/media used to deliver a message can have a significant impact on responses. It is difficult to truly personalize a DRTV or radio message. One can even attempt to send a personalized message via email or text message, but a high quality direct mail envelope and letter will typically have a better chance of generated a response in this scenario.
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Great post as usual Brian. Already on top of most of these tips…but had no clue about the single-option aversion study. Definitely going to be something to test. Will definitely share this around because this post is a must-read.

Direct selling is the sale of products by face-to-face contact with the customer, either by having salespeople approach potential customers in person, or through indirect means such as Tupperware parties.
And even if you do manage to get your emails deployed, odds are very good that your email will generate enough “this is spam” complaints to block your current and future emails at places such as AOL, Gmail, MSN/Hotmail, and Yahoo! If you have a consumer focus, the majority of the email addresses on your list are going to come from these service providers.
I have found that testing is key as well as repetition. I think people expect sometimes to send on email to a rented list and have more hits than a direct mail because the writer is trying to build up more subscriber to his/her product. There are soft wares out there that will send out millions of emails in a short . It was overwhelming and an obvious waste of money.Emaillists is one of the major facts of email marketing if someone wants to dissociate its work then what can be done?Though one company is using such tactics is it bad for their website or business?
Overall responsibility for all aspects of direct marketing activities, whatever their kind or content, rests with the marketer. However, responsibility also applies to other participants in direct marketing activities and that needs to be taken into account. As well as marketers, these may include: operators, telemarketers or data controllers, or their subcontractors, who contribute to the activity or communication; publishers, media-owners or contractors who publish, transmit or distribute the offer or any other communication.
However, none of that will ever become a reality, if you don’t have any subscribers. A lot of the people I talk to claim that it can be a costly affair to grow your email list – but that is a common misunderstanding I want to correct.
Email marketing is an easy, cheap, and effective way to build engagement and take your business to a higher level. And building a healthy email list should be one of the key elements of your email marketing.
There are many forms that direct marketing can take, including mail, telephone calls, coupons, emails, and brochures. Likewise, there are three main concepts to consider in direct marketing: ensure it is an appropriate marketing method, make certain it can generate adequate sales to justify the expense, and make sure it is part of a more robust marketing plan.
While some marketing techniques aim to increase awareness or to educate markets about a company’s products or services, direct marketing’s sole goal is to persuade the recipient to take action. While getting a sale is the ultimate goal, some customers will not be ready to buy on-the-spot. But they might:
Finally, direct marketing is easy to optimize. Again, expanding on the above example, let’s say I carve out not just one sample size of 50, but two. I can send one offer to one group, and a variation of that same offer to the other and see which one produces better results. This is called split testing or A / B testing, and it’s extremely valuable, as it allows you to compare two approaches in a statistically significant way to choose the more optimal approach to introduce to the whole.
For example, in 1872, one of the pioneers of direct marketing, Aaron Montgomery, produced the first mail-order catalog for his business, in which he bought products directly from the source, and then resold them through a catalogue he sent directly to customers. Without a middlemen, i.e the general store, Ward was able to resell products at drastically lower prices.
The downside to LinkedIn is that it doesn’t give you email addresses to anyone who isn’t already a connection. You do have InMails if you have an upgraded account, but that’s time consuming and won’t allow you to do things on a large scale. What about everyone else?
We’ve established that email marketing is most certainly not dead, but one of the most popular questions posed by startups is how to increase the size of their email list, specifically through their company blog.
– Ask for a reason for the unsubscribe request. The truth can hurt, but it can also inform you about what you did wrong if anything so you can avoid the same mistakes in the future. You can put a quick box on your unsubscribe page asking the user to tell you why they decided to unsubscribe.
Perhaps you’re a new company and don’t have a customer base. Maybe you have a service you’re sure that people will love… if only they heard about you. Whatever the reason, buying an email list seems like an easy, low cost way to grow your business. But, there are some serious consequences to purchasing. And there are real benefits to using an opt-in list!
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word ‘direct marketing.’ Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Social media participation can allow you to reach new audiences and make new connections. Stay abreast of trending topics that are of interest to your customers and prospects. Use social media to encourage people to visit one of the channels where they can sign up for your email list.
Now let’s say, hypothetically, your blog posts get about 100 views per month, and your visitor-to-lead conversion rate on the blog is about 2%. That means you’d get two leads from a single blog post each month.
Segmentation is what makes customers feel like you care about them—not about their money (which in turn makes them like you and want to spend their money with you!). In fact, according to MarketingSherpa, click-through rates on segmented emails can be as much as double the rate for unsegmented emails.
Buying an Email List could be a progressive marketing investment only when you source your data from the right vendor. There are hundreds of data vendors in the USA who make big promises but deliver a big zero when it comes to data quality. So, even if you have to spend few extra dollars, never compromise on the quality of your database.
Once you collect those email addresses keep pounding away with value, don’t abuse them with offer after offer. When you continue to add value through great content and education they will turn themselves into buyers and referral sources over time.
The key is to really get your staff on board. Otherwise, you won’t succeed. Convince them that it will add value for the customers and it will shine through when they ask the customers for their email addresses. A nice way to make the staff extra keen is to have competitions between the different stores – who collects the most emails?
Wow – amazingly in depth post on list building! I am having a real focus on this (just installed my lead magnet which is doing well) but there is a tonne of things I still need to focus on. Thanks for the tips.