Ask Questions to Build the Perfect List

amg_blog_img1Did you know that how well you build your list accounts for 60% of the success of your direct mail campaign?  Just as a bad list can lead to failure, a “perfect list” can lead to great success.  So, just how do you create the perfect list?  Ask questions and use the 80/20 principle.

Most everyone is familiar with the 80/20 principle, but not everyone has applied it to their two most valuable resources – time and money.  One of the greatest expenditures for a company is acquiring new clients and increasing the organization’s sales revenues as a result of providing services and products to them.

As you know, 80% of your customer-base delivers you only 20% of your company’s profits.  And the opposite is also true… 20% of your clients bring in 80% of your organization’s earnings.

So how does that relate to creating a mailing list?

It’s simple. When building the perfect list, you must take into account the core attributes of the 20% of your customers who make up 80% of your business.

For B2B clients, ask yourself:

  • What industry they are in?
  • What industries they serve?
  • What is their niche?
  • What products and services do they buy from you?
  • What is their sales revenue?
  • Where are they located?
  • How long have they been in business?
  • How many people typically work in these businesses?
  • What titles are the influencers and decision-makers at these organizations?
  • Are there any particular events or situations that occur for the prospect to be more timely positioned to desire buying your product or service?

For B2C customers, the questions differ:

  • What is their household income range?
  • What is their home value range?
  • Are they married or single?
  • Where do they live? Do they live in metro areas or rural areas or both?
  • Are they male or female?
  • How old are they?
  • What industries do they work in?
  • What are their hobbies?
  • What kind of vehicles do they drive?
  • Do they have children?  If so, between what ages?
  • What education level have they typically attained?
  • Are there any particular events or situations that occur for the prospect to be more timely positioned to desire buying your product or service?

These are just example questions.  There are more to ask, but you get the picture.  Asking yourself a series of questions like this and writing down the answers allows you to analyze your customer base and gather a list of attributes about them.  Those attributes generally fit the entire group; however, they also make the 20% that give you 80% of your revenues stand out.

Don’t forget to share

Be sure to share the results with your direct mail partner.   You want them to know the attributes of those 20%ers to ensure that your list contains all of those prospects first.  Then, if your direct mail budget allows you to expand the list beyond those 20%ers you can have them remove a few of the attributes (or “list filters”) to increase your direct mail quantity.

Ready to build the perfect list?  AMG’s List Procurement Specialist will take your attributes and help you determine the best prospects to target.  Reach out to us and get the conversation started!

For more information on building the perfect list, check out our Infographic, 6 Steps to Build the Perfect Direct Mail List 

Eric Weisgarber

Eric Weisgarber is the founder and President of Allegiant Marketing Group, Inc. His calling is helping business professionals grow their gross profits, net profits, and cash-flow through through marketing services, systems implementation and consulting. His business calling is aligned with his life\’s purpose – developing people and serving the community through discipleship.

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