Nine Reasons Your Lists Aren't Working
Selects can get expensive, so using them wisely is important. Apply too many selects and you cut the available universe and limit roll-out potential, but too few selects can yield names that won't respond and never would.
Test many selects to feel confident that the prospect target matches your customer profile without limiting potential rollout and driving select fees up.
#7: You're Playing Favorites
How you rank files in the merge/purge process can play a huge role in a list's performance. Consider the example of a cataloger that uses names from a cooperative database as well as lists acquired through its brokerage partner directly from list owners. If the cataloger ranks the co-op higher than the names from the title-specific lists, the co-op names will win out in the merge. The result is that the co-op names appear to perform much better in a comparison. Not only are these names modeled, but these "better" prospects are now purged from another title, leaving the title with "weaker" names overall. Sidestep this pitfall by ranking all outside lists equally or "random" in the merge so that each list has just as much of a chance to keep the name as the next.
#8: You're Looking for Bears in the Desert
Maybe the reason your lists aren't working is because you're looking for mail-order buyers on lists that aren't composed of mail-order buyers. In some applications it's difficult to find lists of known mail-order buyers, but catalogers should always try to find them if possible. The key is to go after the buyers first and move down from there.
#9: They Just Aren't Who They Used to Be
Imagine if Wolferman's English Muffins changed the direction of its business and became Wolferman's German Schnitzels. It seems only logical that the profile of its "typical" customer would change too, right?