A client writes:
“We’re considering buying a few lists for our sales team to use for cold calling (versus marketing) — what are the best sources and approach to doing this? For example, I’m interested in lists of ISPs and also, general CISO lists. Do people usually use a broker or are the subscription services “good enough”? We have IdExec in house.
Any thoughts, suggestions? All I know is I must get 10 incoming emails a day from various people trying to sell me lists and I delete them all. Seems like 99% are just junk!”
“List brokers typically aren’t a good resource for buying lists. Most deal exclusively in list rentals, subscriber files and compiled lists such as InfoUSA.
If you’re not familiar with them already, I would definitely recommend Jigsaw. You can search by job function (even using character string), geography, industry, company size, etc. and the data quality is extremely good. I’m a subscriber, and find the service invaluable, especially for identifying prospects with very specific job titles that are too granular for traditional list sources. Two other options would be:
* Harte Hanks Market Intelligence (the old Computer Intelligence) – can be expensive, but a good source if you have very specific technical criteria (such as software installed, operating environment, etc.) We have two clients who use them and report good results, even for e-mail and direct mail purposes.
* Demandbase – a new company on the map; roughly speaking, they’re an online, self-service list broker. The data comes from multiple sources (including Hoovers & D&B) and the company claims to use algorithms that automatically select the best names for the client based on the quality of the data source, the likelihood of the person responding, etc. We don’t have any direct experience as yet and their select criteria is probably too generic for your purposes, but they might be worth checking out.
One note of caution about buying lists – many of these sources (ex: Jigsaw) include e-mail addresses, but in no way should those individuals be regarded as “opted-in”. As such, it may be fine if your reps are e-mailing those prospects individually, but we’d strongly recommend against using them for any kind of mass e-mail broadcast. If you’re looking for opt-in e-mail lists, traditional subscriber files are your best bet.”
What’s the next most important decision after the right list? The offer. For advice on choosing the right offer for your next campaign, download our free white paper: “How to Choose Your Carrot: Effective Lead Generation Offers for High-Technology Marketers.”