Marketing is Much More than a List

Scott: Posted on Thursday, August 23, 2012 9:43 AM

This morning, I received an e-mail that I’m sure many of you have seen once or twice in your in boxes—and it inspired this lovely blog post.
The e-mail which addressed me by name (clever) said this: “Scott, Would you be interested in any of the following updated email lists for your events, lead generation, newsletter campaign etc.?” Then it runs down basically all of its lists including, but not limited to:
  • VP Level Executives List (I am all a-tingle now)
  • Solar Wind Users (that just sounds disgusting)
  • Engineering Executives (better get ready with that Star Trek joke)
  • And my personal favorite…Fire Fighting Executives (really? — see photo)
In this happy little world, we are all on some marketers’ lists and probably have been for decades. We all pretty much accept that. My problem is when people buy and use these lists and think it’s marketing. adidas homme It’s not.
Marketing is first and foremost about listening. If you bought a list of let’s say “executive fire fighters,” you don’t know them, you don’t have a relationship and you haven’t listened to them. Thus, you are not marketing to them. Learn it, live it, love it. That’s the truth.
What you’re actually doing is communicating to them and that communication you’re sending out may or may not be invited or welcome. And about 90 percent of the time, I’m going to guess “not” for 500, Wink Martindale. nike air huarache pas cher (gotta love that name and I’ll bet money he’s on the “game show hosts with funky made up names” list)
I am 100 percent against buying these lists. They don’t help you. They have the illusion of helping you in that it feels good to blast out 15,000 postcards and e-mails and get a lovely 1-2 percent open or response rate. But you aren’t marketing to anyone unless your company is taking the time to listen to your customers, engage with them and THEN communicate with them about the things they’ve told you they need. (Apple, anyone?)
The walls are coming down between advertising (paid media), public relations (earned media) and marketing which should fundamentally be about research (listening) and also content (owned media). Soldes 2017 Asics
And I think this idea of buying “marketing” lists needs to die too.
Some might say — how are we going to develop relationships with them if we don’t tell them about our company, etc.? Well, I would counter with — do we want their first experience with our brand to be negative? No? Then don’t send them an unsolicited e-mail. adidas original Because when I get one, I either delete it or make fun of it in my blog. Neither is the reaction that anyone wants, so STOP IT!

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to pursue my new career as a “Fire Fighting Executive.” He counsels clients by day, fights fires at night, he is…THE FIRE FIGHTING EXECUTIVE.