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Buying and renting mailing lists

The difference between buying and renting is that if you rent a mailing list, you don't actually get the list of email addressess. Instead, your message is sent by the company, which provides this service. Renting is often cheaper, and it works great, if you don't have to send e-mails to the same addresses repeatedly (some email marketing campaigns become effective only after repeated mailings).

So where do you get the lists? You can use any search engine (Google, for example) and type in "buy email lists", "rent mailing lists", etc. You have to be very careful with the results you get. For example, you will see advertisements from companies like ($29.95 one time fee for 500,000+ emails monthly) or (the same price for 75 million emails). An average list costs about $50 for 5000 e-mails (if it's a targeted list), so these companies are basically a fraud. They probably do sell you real email addresses. These are most likely lists from free email providers from 1997, with less then 1% valid e-mails. So what should you do? Contact email marketers or mailing list brokers.

  • - you have to open an account to use their services.
  • - the company lets you choose among various mailing lists. Bulk mailing lists start at $200 for 600,000 addresses. Targeted mailing lists (specific occupations or ZIP code area residents) start at $60 for 5000 addresses. The lists with loose targeting (such as car owners, Internet shoppers, health insurance seekers) cost $50 for 30000 addresses.
  • - similar company, specializing in the UK addresses.
  • - mailing lists superstore with over 80000 lists available. The only disadvantage is a $1000 order minimum.
  • - this company sells mostly telephone numbers and mailing addresses, but has e-mails for sale as well.

But what if you don't want to contact the brokers or e-mail marketing companies in order to get access to e-mail addresses? Simply contact the owners of ezines and newsletters and offer them to buy or rent their e-mail base. Ezines and newsletters provide the best opportunity for the marketers. They usually cover a specific topic (highly targeted audience) and feature active email addresses.

The best way to select an appropriate ezine is to browse through a directory. These are the best directories:

Select 5-10 newsletters that fit you best. Subscribe to each to make sure these are active ezines that are interesting to read, not promotional newsletters. Then contact the owners, explaining who you are and what you want. Inquire about how many subscribers the ezine or newsletter has and make your offer. After you agreed upon a price, pay for 1000 e-mails and test run your marketing campaign. If you are satisfied with the result, purchase the complete list of subscribers or rent it.

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Relevant links:

    • Verify mailing lists
    • Making your bulk email marketing campaing more effective
    • Grab email addresse from the Web

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