- Open rate: 22 percent
- Clickthrough rate: 5.9 percent
The true performance metric is leads, sales or dollars generated. Start with the clickthrough rate and estimate what percentage of these folks will make it to the finish line and help you reach your performance goal.
Often, rental lists don't perform even half as well as a marketer's house list. Once in a while, I'll find a list that performs better than the marketer's in-house e-mail list, but that's rare. Understand this going in, and set your expectations accordingly.
8. Monitor deliverability: Getting your e-mail to the recipients is always a concern with e-mail. Prior to signing a list rental agreement, request the IP address(es) that your e-mail will be sent from. Once you have the IP address(es), do some research on reputation and deliverability. There are many Web sites out there that offer this service for free, including:
Each of these Web sites uses slightly different criteria. I recommend that you check the IP addresses on two or more and see how they rank. Be sure that the IP address(es) your e-mail will be sent from have good reputations—and respectable deliverability.
Check these same Web sites again during or just after the send, to make sure nothing has changed. Reputation and deliverability are moving targets. An IP address that was "clean" yesterday can be tainted today by a send that triggers spam concerns among the ISPs receiving the e-mail messages.
9. Include a reputation/deliverability clause in the contract: Be proactive in protecting yourself from deliverability issues. Make sure a clause in the contract addresses deliverability problems. Best-case scenario is a money-back guarantee, triggered if the IP address reputation or deliverability falls below agreed upon levels during or immediately following the send. If your list owner or broker won't agree to that, ask that the remedy be a repeat send from a "clean" IP address as a "make good." If the list owner or broker won't agree to that, beware.