As an email marketing vendor, we’re constantly reminding folks that when it comes to list size, quality rules over quantity. Even as 2010 approaches, we are approached by people with a focus on renting or buying lists to increase their numbers, rather than asking us for advice on how to grown their in-house, permission-based email lists.
But maybe the trend is shifting toward growing permission-based email lists now, based on a recently published MarketingSherpa chart.
According to MarketingSherpa’s email marketing analysis of the report:
- Permission-based email lists grew for two-thirds of all email marketers
- 11% described their permission-based email list as “growing quickly”
- Only 3% of reported a decline
- Permission-based email lists that grew in the first half of 2009 did so on average of almost 20%
The report also concluded that the recession and ensuing job losses impacted the lower rate of B2B email list growth. And that got me thinking about the B2C email list growth: Are consumers signing up for more permission-based emails because they are hoping for specials and deals that will be easier to afford on tighter budgets? If so, when the economy recovers, that might be something to keep in mind. You might find your list decreasing in size as people no longer bargain hunt and all you’re offering is bargains. On the other hand, if you’re seducing people to sign up by offering them great deals in a bad economy, you’d better deliver on that promise too!
Of course you want your in-house email list to grow. But you must focus on the permission-based emails, on growing the list focused on quality of the names, not quantity of the names. Remember, sending to a bunch of people who don’t want to hear from you could ultimately impact your email delivery rate too, as you get reported as spam!
It’s also important to remain cognizant of why they opted in to begin with and what they expect to get from us in the future. If you don’t meet their expectations, they’ll drop off the list again, I’m sure.