International List Options (464 words)
In the United States, a mature market is the major blockade to finding new names, whereas overseas the challenge is not only finding lists but getting permission to mail to them.
Business publication lists, says Stephen Eustace, team leader, international brokerage, at Acxiom/Direct Media in Greenwich, CT, are very good sources of names. The Business Week list, for example, gets used frequently, because 50 percent to 60 percent of the file includes home addresses, an optimal situation for mailing both consumer and business offers.
What if you don't want to live by publication lists alone? You'll probably have to go off the beaten path, says Mike Manning, president of Manning Media International, in Plano, TX.
exchanges. The main catalog companies in some countries dominate the marketplace and don't rent their lists, says Manning. However, if you have some international names of your own, they will consider an exchange.
Another option, if you have international names, Eustace adds, is to contact U.S. companies with an international presence. The National Geographic Society has a wonderful file, he says, but only exchanges its names with firms, such as Lands' End, who also have international names to trade.
Compiled Lists. Overseas, compiled lists are generally more prevalent than response lists and tend to be of fairly good quality and sophistication because the names are overlaid with profile data for more precise targeting, explains Eustace.
You could profile your customer base to build a model that can identify other likely prospects among compiled files.
And, Manning adds, consumer mobility is also a big factor in list quality, as international prospects move around less than their U.S. counterparts. Compiled lists, therefore, stay cleaner for longer.
Alternate media. Many direct marketers have used space advertising to generate initial orders and prospect names. Then, they fulfill orders with either a full-size catalog or a trimmed-down version to test the waters.