Lists with a High Percentage of Bad Email Addresses are Unacceptable.
I’ve Come to a New Revelation. We Should Not Accept Bad Email Addresses from List Providers ANY MORE.
I’ve been researching and providing B2B and B2C lists to our clients campaigns for over 27 years. For B2B clients, I’ve used every data provider out there, including D&B, Netprospex, Discover.org, Data.com, OneSource, Lake Group, Hoovers, you name it — and they all have one thing in common: a high percentage (10-20%) of bad data, and even worse, bad email addresses. It’s as though the providers expect us to pay top dollar AND accept a certain percentage of bad email addresses as normal and acceptable. Yeah sure, they’ll replace the bad ones, but by the time you’ve figured out which are bad, the campaign may be long over and your email sending provider (ESP) is hot under the collar from your unacceptable email deliverability rate. Here’s why:
First of All, it’s Getting Harder to Fix the Bad Email Addresses Yourself
It’s become the practice of many marketers to go along with the bad data the providers supply and try to validate or “fix” it themselves by using some kind of a verification tool such as BriteVerify. However, the spam filters are catching on to these verification tools and learning to spoof them by giving false reports or throwing a higher percentage of emails into a catch all bucket, which you shouldn’t mail because they’re not really verified. So you’ve just paid a penny a name or more for validation data you increasingly cannot trust. As a result, it will increasingly bring your email sending domain reputation down by sending to bad email addresses.
Secondly, Improved Database Technology
Secondly, database technology has improved so much with AI and social media verification, that a list vendor literally has no excuse to have inaccurate contact data, let alone bad email data. If they have bad email data, they’re simply not very good at what they do, and they don’t deserve your business.
Lastly, don’t let them be lazy. Make them REALLY validate the data before they supply it to you. Ultimately, that means they have to be creative on their own dime and their own time to figure out if the email addresses are valid.
Finding the Best List Owners
I’ve known some list owners to send a mini survey out on some topic related to your campaign, to see which emails delivered (and which didn’t). This has an added bonus of giving you the response results to the survey. Others have very sophisticated email validation procedures that look at the data from 200+ data points. Bottom line, these list vendors work harder to provide you a good product, and they deserve your business more than the other guys.
You may ask who these mysterious data providers may be. I don’t make it a practice to endorse any vendors in my blog, because they may not offer everyone the same services that they offer me. I have negotiated with my vendors to go the extra mile, do the hard work, and to provide a good product the first time around. And that’s the key. You should negotiate and demand for this level of service from your vendor too.
In conclusion, the time has come for marketers to revolt and not accept bad email addresses from their B2B Data providers ANY MORE.
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