There are definitely some things in life and business that should not be repeat events. Things that happen once and only once due to their specific nature and what is generally, and socially, considered to be the right way to do, or not to do, things.
As I write this, a few events that should not be repeated come to mind:
• Tax evasion
• Getting drunk at the annual corporate Christmas party (although it is fun to watch the train wreck as long as it’s someone else)
• Burning the Thanksgiving Day turkey
• Sending a true B2B offer to a general B2C audience
• Forgetting to add the opt-out link to your creative
• Email list rental
Now what really doesn’t belong in this list? If anyone is thinking marriage I’ll include a marriage counseling hotline number later. Seriously, as an online marketer who truly believes in the value and potential of e-marketing, why has it become so common for advertisers to look at email list rental as something they’re going to try once versus a program that they will commit to and work to develop into a short- and long-term strategic component of their media marketing plans?
If you look at the online advertising industry as a whole, you see a cutting-edge marketing medium that most predict will grow at a 30% clip year after year for the foreseeable future. Seems like a great sandbox to play in. In a survey conducted by E-Marketer, 84% of the respondents said using email is their favorite online activity—so there is an audience for these advertisers to target! Email (retention and acquisition) will be one of the top two verticals that will offer advertisers the best opportunity to communicate with potential prospects and current customers.
None of that sounds bad, so what gives? Is it just a general acceptance of what is versus what should be? Is there just not enough people in the marketplace who know how to make email work, and how to make customer acquisition a recurring success story in the advertiser world? It’s probably that and more because email list rental is without question an amazing marketing vehicle for branding, customer acquisition, and re-marketing to further establish a relationship with an on-the-fence prospect.
Think about the rationale of saying you’re going to base the entire future of your email list rental efforts on the results you receive from a one-time singular event. Is that good business sense? If everyone gave up after the first try didn’t work out we’d have never invented the wheel, never discovered fire, never been able to fly, and those things called computers would never have been built!
Committing to the process as a whole—testing subject lines, testing different creative, using dynamic targeting and personalization, transmitting your prospecting messages at different times and days—will all lead you to the end of the rainbow that exists. I have seen it happen, and have made it happen for many advertisers—large and small, big budgets and small budgets. The one thing they had in common was the determination to make it work and stick it out. They took on the attitude that this will not be a one-time event, but a multi-stage process that would ultimately take their business to a new level.
It can be quantifiably proven that the more you reach out to a prospect audience with your message, in an ethical and well thought out process, the better the results become over time. This is not a quick fix strategy—one in which you need to sell 1,000 widgets by Friday so you quickly throw together a marketing piece and blast it out to the cheapest list you can find. No, this is an opportunity to reach a prospect audience in a dynamic way, testing a variety of strategies, and capitalizing on the fact that not just the world itself, but the people of the world are all migrating to the digital environment.
So do become committed to using email list rental, and do create a long-term strategy, so you don’t get left behind by all the other companies who have committed to this marketing vertical a long time ago.
Now for that marriage counseling number…