HOW TO: Grow your email marketing database

HOW TO: Grow your email marketing database

Grow your email marketing database

By what percentage do you wish to grow your B2B email marketing database?

What methods will you use to do this?

What is the expected cost of the time and other resources needed to do this?

Set an annual budget for list-growth tactics and integrate it with your marketing budget.Once you have a clear idea of the numbers you need to attain, you can move on to achieve these through third-party acquisition and organic growth.

Third-party acquisition

If you already have a prospect database, one of the best ways to grow it is to work with a data supplier to clean it up, enhance and append it. This can be done in several ways:

If your database contains names and postal addresses but not email addresses, your data supplier can match your file with a permission-based email database, and provide you with email addresses.

A data supplier can append additional demographic information to your database. This can be used to build a profile of your prospects so that your email campaigns are much more targeted and successful.

Gather intelligence from your existing customer base to help identify ‘look-a-likes’ that are similar to your existing best customers. Your data supplier can use this information to identify new prospects with similar characteristics.

To fuel the growth of your B2B email marketing lists, you will need to make your email campaigns work harder for you. Think about the touch points you can put in place to interact with and grow your database.

Organic growth

Organic growth is all about using your touch points with potential customers to collect their email addresses. These touch points might be online, such as on your website or social media, or offline, at industry events or through telemarketing campaigns.

The key is to optimise all touch points to encourage the cold prospects you’ve contacted to opt-in to receive further information. Remember, prospects that have opted in are the most responsive to future marketing communications. So find out what they want, when, where and how they want to be contacted.

The best way to encourage prospects to provide this information is to give them something they want in return. For example, white papers work well in the B2B market. Make it easy for them to sign up, don’t ask for too much information, and make it worth their while. Then begin your email relationship by sending them a brief welcome message.

Combine quantity with quality

Of course, growing your database is just the first step. For your B2B email marketing campaigns to be successful, you need to ensure that the messages you send to your expanded list are relevant, engaging, well designed and personalised. Even with a large database to target, you still need to apply the best-practice rules of email marketing if you are to maximise your response rates. In fact, these rules are more important than ever when targeting cold B2B prospects.


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