About Mailing List Stuff

This site was created with people like you in mind. From the small business owner to the entrepreneur, we understand the need for not only affordable marketing materials, but appealing as well. That is why we’ve dedicated our time and resources to create a platform that makes understanding and creating your next mailing list simple and easy.

However, you may be wondering, who is EZ Discount Printing and why you should print your marketing materials with us, let alone take our advice on mailing lists.

Let us introduce ourselves, we are EZDiscountPrinting.com, an online printing and direct mail company.  We have over 25 years experience in offset printing, digital printing and direct mail. We’ve seen it all – the good, the bad and the really, really ugly. Our experience helps our clients navigate their way through the world of marketing, starting with creating and establishing your mailing list.

We’ve put together this simple website in the hope that our knowledge and experience will be able to assist you as you create the marketing materials you need to grow your own business and brand.

So go ahead, save yourself time, money, and the discomfort of creating an ineffective mailing list. We’re here to help you brand yourself with confidence, ease and in good taste.

Mailing List Tips, Tricks, and How-To by EZ Discount Printing

Mailing List Stuff is part of the marketing stuff series brought to you by EZ Discount Printing.

At EZ Discount Printing we not only strive to provide quality marketing materials, but also help make the process as simple and economical for you as possible.

What Can a Mailing List Do for You? It will increase your business, by attracting the specific customers, demographic, and your target audience that you’re looking for.

You’re probably thinking, “I can do this myself.” And you probably can.

The purpose of this site is to describe the components of an effective mailing list, include a few basic concepts and point out mistakes to avoid.

Looking for more? Mailing List Stuff is only one part of the marketing stuff series brought to you by EZ Discount Printing. If you’re looking for more tips, tricks, hints and explanations to help you become more effective and cost efficient in marketing your business, read our other articles in the marketing stuff series here.

You can also reach out to us anytime via email or phone. Find all our contact information here.

What To Do and Not Do When it Comes to Designing Your Mailing List.

They may start out quite inexpensive but mailing lists can become costly very quickly. The number of selects you have is virtually unlimited and the subsets you create can really target your market like a mathematical formula: select A + select B + (select C – Select D) + select E within a range of X to Y. Just remember that all those selects have a cost associated.

Also realize that while some lists come from public data, not all information is available for all resulting choices. For instance, the gross sales of a public corporation is public knowledge. However, a similar company in the same exact field may be privately owned and they do not release their sales figures. In that case gross sales may be implied or not available.

The same is true in consumer lists. People do not generally volunteer their income, but ranges can be inferred through a variety of sources: do they drive a Mercedes or a Saturn? Do they have a subscription to Yachting magazine and Golf Digest? Do they own in an area of high value homes or do they rent an apartment? List managers take all this information and layer it onto itself, creating what are called “compiled” lists.

(Our consumer lists come from the credit services Trans Union and Equifax. And subscription lists for Yachting Magazine and Golf Digest are available lists!))

Mailing Lists Shapes and Sizes

OK, perhaps we’re stretching the phrase “Shapes and Sizes” when discussing something as ephemeral  as a list, but not by much. They really do come in different “shapes” and they can be different “sizes” as well. Instead of the word “shape” let’s use the term, “type”. There are two different types of mailing lists, business and consumer, and you approach each differently.

Business lists allow you to market your company to other businesses. An important tool you may want o use is the Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) Code of the businesses you intend to target.  Here is a link (http://www.osha.gov)  to the US Government’s list of SIC Codes.

Consumer lists are for business or organizations that cater directly to a consumer. The two sub-categories are addressed lists and saturation lists. We discuss the latter in greater detail at our site, EveryDoorDirectMailStuff.com (link)

How you fine tune your lists is through a series of filters, often called “selects.” Both business and consumer list have selects for geography; do you want customers in your zip code? In your county? The State? The entire USA? You can even select your mailing list by setting a geographic point (such as your business address, and then extending a radius line a given distance, such as five or ten miles.

Additional business selects include corporate office vs facility, franchises vs independent owners, public vs private corporations, home businesses, years in business, numbers of employees, phone numbers and gross sales.

 

Consumer lists will contain selects for family size, income, home ownership vs renters, presence of children, ages of children, head of household age, profession, hobbies, phone numbers, ethnicity, religion, home value, etc. Surprised by what is available? You shouldn’t be. People have been giving this information over to data collection agencies for years and web sites like Facebook and LinkedIn have made it easier for these companies to gather the data. (Here we can’t help taking a shot at our biggest competitor, V*sta Pr*nt.  Did you really think they took a loss by selling 1,000 business cards for 99 cents? They make money on that order by selling their customer’s name, address, email and every bit of information they collect over and over again. In fact, they’re one of the country’s largest source of personal data.)

Keep in mind that selections work both ways. You could choose all the families who earn $100,000 within ten miles of your store but exclude those within a specific zip code.  As you add more and more selects you add filters to get to your ideal customers, you make your potential list smaller and smaller.

Most lists are priced at a base price per thousand plus additional costs per selects. For example, a consumer list may start at $40 per thousand plus $10 per thousand for an income select, plus $5 per thousand for a profession select plus $5 per thousand for a home value select. Most lists will also have a minimum quantity per order and business lists tend to cost slightly more than consumer lists.

When you are ready to experiment with lists visit our site at http://yourmarketingstuff.com/mailing-lists. You can get counts and see costs all without any obligation.

Mailing List Options

Mailing lists are available in multiple formats:  Excel (.xls), Comma Separated Value (.csv, also Excel compatible)  and fixed length fields (.txt). Choose the one that best fits your mailing application. If this is a project you are going to try yourself, we recommend selecting either of the two Excel compatible formats which will work well with Microsoft Word through a mail merge.

Another option you have is to download a list and forward it to a mailing house and have them perform the merge operation.

And of course, we will work with you through all steps of your project. You choose your design, we will print it. You choose your mailing list, we will address your pieces.

Mistakes to Avoid When Creating Mailing Lists

Perhaps the most common error in creating a mailing list for marketing is not matching the list to a valid customer profile. Unfortunately, many small businesses think they know who their best customer is – and they are wrong. Then they continue to go after potential customers who really aren’t interested in their products or services.

This web site cannot make you a marketing expert. But send us an email and we may be able to point you in the right direction to better understand your customer base.

The second biggest error is not sending the correct message, a subject we cover in greater detail on our directmailstuff website. For now, let us just mention that although we supplied the basic content for this web site, the actual text was written by a professional copywriter  who has a much better way with words than we do. We do practice what we preach.

Finally, an important word of caution: Business lists with phone numbers can be called but we strongly recommend that you do not try to call phone numbers on a consumer list. Although those lists should be scrubbed of anyone on the Federal Do Not Call registry, you never know and you are placing yourself in a liability position if you make the call. Better to rent the list and send it to a legitimate call center.

Please note that we used the word “rent” a list. Technically, all lists are rented, not sold,  and remain the property of the list owner. When you rent a list you rent it for a one time use unless other arrangements are made in advance.