Protecting Your Customer List

Well I might not blog regularly, but one thing I do every single day, pretty much without fail, is check the daily Dilbert.

Here’s another fun one for you:

Dilbert.com

Dilbert has this amazing way of making a fun situation out of everyday business topics.

The issue here is how well are you protecting your list (you DO have a list, right?). And by protecting, I’m not talking about selling your names to the highest bidder; hopefully you’re well beyond that point. A responsive list is worth far more to YOU than the few bucks you’ll get by shilling it around.

Maybe you’ve heard of the Syndicate… Frank Kern’s little group of BFF’s who mail for each other night and day ad nauseum.

Or perhaps you’ve been tempted to JV with the first person that asks…

Well, mailing FOR other people is essentially giving your list away, except that you’re not selling it.

And you need to be extremely aware of who and what is being exposed to your list, because long term, the profits off a single JV simply don’t compare to keeping the integrity of your list intact.

You mail out an offer that turns out to be rather questionable, and you go down several notches in your subscriber’s eyes… every single time. Pretty soon, this can be a recipe for a non-responsive list.

I recently received one of these “JV Invitation” style emails. In it the guy was talking about the product owner’s own list, which was apparently over 100,000 names. Apparently, this gave him the ability to send hordes of traffic with a single email.

I would have been marginally impressed, if he had left it there. However, he quickly jumped in and defined “hordes” as being “over 5000 clicks.”

Wait a sec, did he say “5000”? That’s only a 5% click through rate! Actually, it’s less, considering his list is apparently bigger than 100k… In my world, 5% is darn near dead. I routinely get more volume than this out of lists a quarter the size.

Interesting though eh? Of course I’m jumping in making assumptions here, because I really don’t know all the details in this particular case, but in general, I’ll say that if you participate in the mailing frenzy each and every time they ask, pretty soon there’s nothing that differentiates you from everyone else anymore, and at that point, why bother reading what you have to say?


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