Portner finds past campaign information to be crucial in determining the right lists for a client.
"The more a mailer can give me in terms of a road map as to how campaigns have done in the past, be it successes or failures, I'll have a better handle on where to go from there," he says. "When a campaign fails, there are other factors involved that the list brokers need to know about."
What Mailers Need
Regardless of how heavily entrenched a list broker is in his clients' campaigns, one service he renders is extremely vital: monitoring industry trends.
"A list broker, as well as a manager, gives me a clear picture of what's going on in the list business," says Buchler. "They're one of my tools for gauging whether my list activity is meeting the trend or behind the trend."
Aside from bringing his industry knowledge to the table, Portner says he likes getting inside the heads of his clients to provide what they need.
"When I give my clients a list reco, I want there then to be a give-and-take dialogue so we can discuss why I think they should be using a certain list," he says. "What I try to give back to my mailers is not only information on a list, but also the creative thoughts and ideas behind it."
Chapman says two other ways a broker can be a staunch ally to a mailer is paying attention to details and double-checking to make sure lists have arrived either to the mailer or at the mail house.
"If they're working on multiple campaigns within a company, see if they can get volume discounts on the most-used lists," she adds.
For list brokers to have optimum success, they have to be emotionally involved with their clients, says Bogner.