Direct Marketing in One Week : We will review these matters in turn. First, you have to have someone, or many ‘some ones’, to whom to send your direct mail.
Prospects – Selecting Respondents
It will always bring better results if your milshots are addressed to idividual prospects, and that means by name, not ‘The managing Director, ABC Co. Ltd’.
The effectiveness of any mailing is clearly dependent on mailing the right people. i.e. on the quality of the mailing list.
There are two approaches to the question of lists: either build your own or use other people’s (or a combination of both, as they are not mutually exclusive.
Outside sources of lists abound, available most often for rent, and sometimes for outright purchase. Rented lists are well guarded and will always include what are called ‘seeded’names’, that is, names placed in the list to allow the owner to monitor how it is used. Such lists might include the home addresses of certain members of the renter’s staff.
This prevents lists hired for one=time use being copied and used again. Using outside lists can be very useful, not least because it avoids the problem of holding them, printing off labels and much of the administration detail involved.
Sources of lists are well documented and these days just putting ‘direct mail lists’ in Google will produce links to many sources for rent or purchase.
At the same time, informal sources, ranging from companies you know to chambers of trade or commerce, may also be useful. In addition, you can cull names from a wealth of directories ( those that do not make their entries available in list form), not simply to mail once, but to record and use again. For many the most valuable sector of their list is not prospects but actual customers.
Reference: Direct Marketing In A Week : Patrick Forsyth