So you’ve got yourself a new contact list. Now what? Bought lists help you reach your growth targets faster—that is, if you’re able to set it up the right way. Today’s post goes over four steps you should follow right after you buy a contact database. These activities ensure that your list works as expected or, even better, exceed your targets.
In a previous post, we talked about the five situations where it’s okay to buy a contact database:
- Your solution solves a real pain point or problem.
- You’ve clearly identified your target prospects.
- You’re targeting a high turnover industry.
- You don’t have the resources to build a list at scale.
- You’re expected to deliver results in the near-term.
If it makes sense for you to buy a contact database and you’ve invested in one already, then there’s a few things you need to straighten out first before using your list right out of the box.
1. Clean the bought list thoroughly first
Even though your list may come from a reputable database provider, you can’t take any chances when it comes to data quality. That’s why you need to thoroughly scrub and validate your bought list before putting it to use.
- Scrub invalid addresses, spam traps, and distribution email addresses
- Remove (hard) bounced addresses
- Verify and update records
List cleaning tends to take up time and resources, so it might be a better option to let a third-party data cleaning services company do it for you.
2. Build your sender identity and reputation
To improve email deliverability, you need to convince both your recipients and ISPs that you’re someone they can trust. The idea is to let them know there’s a real person behind the email and that you’re really who you say you are.
- Personalize your sender name
- Use SPF, DKIM, and DMARC tools
- Try out sender score and certification services
- Warm up a new IP or use a dedicated sending IP
Using a bought list means you’re likely reaching out to most of the contacts for the first time. This underscores the importance of building your identity and reputation.
3. Ask contacts if they want to stick around
Most list vendors tout their products as opt-in, permission-based, or anti-spam-compliant. But, unless you’re deeply familiar with their data collection and QA practices, it’s better to err on the side of caution and carry out a double opt-in campaign, where you ask contacts for permission.
Here’s a quick rundown of how to run a double opt-in campaign after you buy a contact database:
- Do a thorough data scrub (see step 1)
- Prepare your free (value) offer
- Craft an opt-in confirmation email
- Build the landing page
- Re-confirm with a thank you email
It’s okay if you encounter a lot of unsubscribes after your double opt-in campaign. Aside from staying compliant, this is one way of cleaning your list for better deliverability and engagement.
4. Reach out, engage, and respond
Bought lists translate to cold outreach. But that doesn’t mean your first interaction with the contacts should be icy, too. In order to maximize response and/or conversions, be sure to:
- Personalize your cold emails beyond ‘Hi [FirstName]’
- Segment your list according to buyer personas
- Offer educational content (whitepapers, webinars, articles, etc.) related to the contact’s job title or industry
- Start a nurturing campaign with follow-ups and multi-touch cadence
These best practices should help you avoid getting the cold shoulder from your cold prospects.
When you buy a contact database, you need to put a few things in place before using it in your campaign. Keep these four steps in mind as you start growing your pipeline.