Email is still the #1 source of marketing for SMB´s (Borrell Associates, 2018) and local media are cashing in by selling email marketing as a service.
So which is better? Selling your owned list, purchasing email data outright, or reselling using a white-label email marketing service?
Here are a few distinctions: A data broker sells ownership of lists outright, typically for a hefty price.
A white label email marketing service, on the other hand, charges a small one time wholesale fee per email sent, and manages the deployment. The reseller marks up the price.
So when should media or agency buy data, use its own email list, or resell email via an email marketing servicer?
Buying a list from a data broker
At first glance, buying a list outright seems attractive. There is a one- time cost and the new owner has unlimited use of the data.
For a media growing its own promotional list, buying data outright seems fast and simple way to meet numerical goals, and it is free to send.
However, the data is not always high quality, and most resellers of email marketing services decide that using a white-label email marketing service such as Site Impact is a better option.
Using an opt-in email marketing service
Here are a few of the reasons that resellers choose white-label back end email services:
In addition to unknowns about the quality of the data purchased, is legality of use. The rules are murky and both buyer and seller can be liable for a can-spam violation, a criminal offense that also has substantial fines per email that is improperly opted in. The new GDPR laws in Europe have upped the consequences and California has legislation underway to adopt the same standards. An opt-in email marketing service like Site Impact removes this risk from the reseller.
As a result of increased risk, many companies that use to sell data outright no longer do. So data that is purchased is typically raw with little segmentation. An email service such as Site Impact, the back end provider for hundreds of newspapers, segments its opted-in list at the granular level, so the reseller can target customers by age, income, geography and more than 350 behavior interest points in a few clicks. Enhanced automotive data even includes the age and brand of cars owned and purchase intent. List brokers do not have this kind of data.
Ease of deployment is also important to both sellers and customers making a last minute buy. Site Impact´s platform provides a simple online checklist to select targets. A sales person can take an order at 3 p.m. and send a promotion to a targeted list the next morning. When they feel confident in the ease of fulfillment, they also sell more!
Avoids overuse issues of owned lists
Over-sending to people who are not interested causes more bounces, unsubscribes, lower open rates. Media who try to resell their own lists find them shrinking in both size and performance. Targeting is the best way to fulfill the needs of local SMB´s without compromising an valuable owned list via overuse.
Improved results for SMBs
At the end of the day, using an opt-in marketing service that has millions of files with granular targeting capabilities provides a higher quality result for clients. Site Impact is the largest of these wholesalers, providing the backend service to most major newspapers, so even smaller targets can be fulfilled with a quality send. They even guarantee a higher click-through rate.
Less conflict between user-experience and customer-experience
For media companies who work hard to register and owned-audience, email services help meet the often conflicting goals of personalization and relationship-building and the goals of SMB´s who want to use email for commercial purposes. Using an external list of people who have opted-in to commercial messages keeps priorities intact.
Immediate ROI with no upfront investment
Buying email data from a broker costs thousands of dollars up front, and there is no guarantee of how the list will perform or what the return will be. The wholesale/retail per send model lets the reseller make money from the first send, and track ROI easily.
No administrative drag
Another attractive aspect is ease of implementation. Sending numerous emails for dozens of customers requires significant back end support. Partnering with an email marketer means that all the seller has to do is select the targets in a few clicks and send over an ad. The list management and deployment is automated with an entire production team to ensure proper inbox placement.