1. Must-Have: Full Contact Name and Position
Your sample list should include the full contact name of each e-mail recipient and it’s position in the organization, along with the direct e-mail address. Once you have received the sample, verify at least 10 contacts on LinkedIn (worldwide), Xing (Germany) or Viadeo (France). If cannot find any of them,
Be cautious if you receive an emails list with this crucial data missing or incomplete (e.g. initials only). If there is not such data or data quality or completeness is obviously low, demand for money refund. Having the full name of email recipient is important to allow at least basic personalization of e-mails. Without having full name and direct e-mail, you will not be able to prepare anything beyond general e-mail loosely aligned with personality of your recipients, and you are very likely to land in “Spam” or “Newsletters” folder, which is never read.
2. Avoid General E-mail Addresses
If the sample contain email addresses like: “email@example.com”, do not expect high response rate. Actually you might expect zero response rate. General email addresses are very common with consultancy email lists, local businesses email lists and corporate business email databases. If your list sample contains such email addresses then it is clear that the email addresses were compiled from web crawlers. For a successful email list campaign you need the email address of business owner, CEO or at least a director respective to your proposal.
3. Track and Enforce Delivery Rate
E-mail service providers (companies who transit emails through the internet) block or send to spam boxes the e-mails which are sent from an address which attempted to send e-mails to too many inexisting addresses. So if you make a flood to 1000 addresses of which half is non-deliverable, you can result in having no responses or no opens at all. This can happen if you use email list that is less than 80-90% deliverable. Demand warranty of 80+ percent email delivery rate. The best is money refund option if you get more than 20% undeliverability on a reasonable sample (50-100 contacts) of the list. You should never risk negative impact to sender reputation you hopefully already heard about.
4. Avoid “Additional Contacts for Undeliverable” Bad Deal
Some B2B list sellers promise to send you additional email addresses in exchange for undeliverable emails. There are two issues with that approach. First – this is bad deal for you, because this is your sender reputation which is at risk. You will have to send list of undelivered e-mails to your seller, so you become a “bad email detector” for your e-mail list provider, and you even paid him for performing this role. The second issue – these additional emails might be invalid or undeliverable as well. Are you willing to waste time on repeating the complaint procedure again?
5. Target Group As Requested
Take a few items sample and just go to the websites of the companies on the list (you have received the company names and their websites in the contacts list, haven’t you?). If websites are already dead, it’s clear sign of not being up-to-date. Websites should show you clear alignment of their offerings with the target group specification you gave to your list supplier.
6. Avoid 100,000 Items Lists for €99.
You might think that purchasing such a list is risk-free, as you spend very little, so even if it’s crap, you don’t loose too much, right?
Wrong. If the business contacts list is crap, you will send e-mails to crappy e-mail addresses. This takes worthy time of your employees and will cost you a small pile of money if using e-mailing service. Your IP address might be blacklisted for using a low quality email list. Do not expect any positive ROI from 10 cents per email list.
All you need is 200-500 verified B2B contacts list to decisive managers in companies which are exactly in one of your narrow niches. A few hunderds of carefully selected, quality email addresses is able to generate more responses than 100000 low quality email addresses. Reasonable quality B2B contacts databases generated solely for you are usually worth their price, provided that you obeyed these safety rules.