How do I build my emailing address database?

Of course, in order to embark on your email marketing, you need to gather addresses. You can buy them from data merchants or gather them yourself through stealth

Compiling your own email address list

B2B
If your potential clients are B2B, then it’s potentially much better if you compile your own lists through researching, as you know whatever lists you build up will be fairly accurate and appropriate to what your business hopes to reach. The problem here though, is the sheer time cost of doing this work, a way round this is to employ an external agent to carry out this task for you to get up to a decent starting level, and then to bring it in-house to build and maintain. Another consideration is that of email address storage, you really need a software platform that will allow easy maintenance of your email list. In fact, your email storage should ideally be part of a system integrated into your general business database – if you have one that is. (see business database systems here). Alternatively, you can refresh data from your business database into your emailing database if it’s held seperately.

Public
The only reliable way is probably through your website ‘subscribe‘ button or through gathering customer email addresses. It’s a slow process and much will depend on your ability to gather emails from customers following sales, and then emailing them with content designed to keep them signed-up. If gathering from your website, your website content will need to be compelling, and you’ll have to do all possible in terms of the positioning of your website.

Buying email addresses
Your best bet here is to buy data from actual data companies that research and generate the addresses, rather than from a data broker. There are many data brokers overcharging and imposing very restrictive licensing conditions to the data sold. The big issues here are how recently the data set is refreshed and what portion of a given sector is covered by the data company – very often you are unable to buy data for 100% of a sector.

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