Does Size Matter? (i.e. the size of your list)

September 23rd, 2009 by Heather Maloney

When I’m talking to people who are considering starting up a regular e-newsletter, I often ask “how many contacts do you have in your client database” [I only ask this to demonstrate how many messages they can send for what price]. The response is very often almost an apology such as “oh, I only have a few hundred, but I intend to increase it”.

I would like to say here and now, there is no shame in a list of “only a few hundred”, and the size of your list should not delay you in starting your regular email newsletter.

An email campaign to the 200 person list, where every one of those 200 people personally know the business owner, and the services they are providing, could deliver a much better response rate than the same campaign to a list of 2,000 people who subscribed to a list ‘accidentally’ or ‘by default’, and have never used the business’ services.

I see this born out all the time with eNudge Subscriber’s campaigns. Those businesses with lists that have grown organically over time, or where they have grown rapidly through obvious interest in a particular product or service, produce much better results than purchased [Spam Act Compliant] lists or lists developed by ‘tricking’ people into consenting. The sooner a new business starts their e-newsletter, the better. It has a number of advantages including:

  1. Provides fresh content for your website, which will help your search engine rank on your area of expertise.
  2. Gives your contacts something easy to forward onto people whom they wish to refer to you.
  3. Reminds your contacts of the things they want to do with your business.
  4. Gives you a forum to educate your customers to make it easier for them to do business with you.
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