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Marketing Data Lists: Mass Vs Tailored

When a business looks into purchasing data lists, there are a number of considerations to take into account. If you do not regularly use data, it can be a confusing prospect. Marketing data is a highly valuable tool that a business can utilise to yield high returns.

For those that are not in the data industry, it can be unclear what list you should purchase. There are many data brokers in the UK selling a variety of B2B and B2C data lists. Depending on who you are targeting, the contact methods you want, the geographical location etc, marketing lists vary greatly in price and responsiveness.

In this post we will look at both sides of a long standing debate. Is it better to go for quantity or quality when purchasing a marketing data list?

Quantity (Mass)

There are many data lists available in the UK that are give access to a large number of records. Below, we outline some of the benefits that purchasing a list such as these could provide your business:

  • Contains a greater number of records in some cases
  • They usually command a lower cost per thousand records
  • Allows you to reach a large number of individuals/businesses
  • Ideal if you offer a product/service that has mass appeal from multiple demographics

However, they are not necessarily a perfect answer. They are available on a mass scale meaning your competitors are also able to purchase and work the same list. This makes an audience potentially less responsive. Furthermore, they are limited to the range of information they hold. A mass mailing list may not have certain contact methods such as email addresses which makes certain marketing mediums unavailable.

As they are sold to multiple businesses, people may opt-out of the list. Unfortunately, this information is not always relayed to others using it. These businesses may continue to market to these individuals, unaware that they have opted-out. Unfortunately, this can lead to complaints or reports. However, with this being said, GPDR is coming into effect in May. Therefore, this practice should become a thing of the past.

Quality (Tailored)

Alternatively, there are a smaller number of data owners in the UK who are able to build bespoke/ highly targeted lists for your marketing campaigns. Below we list some of the benefits that this can bring your business:

  • More targeted to suit your business and the message you are putting across
  • More contact methods available, therefore making cross channel marketing possible
  • Cleansed on a regular basis to ensure high levels of accuracy and compliance
  • Fewer incorrect records, thus saving money of contacting incorrect records

A bespoke, high quality marketing data list can result in a highly successful marketing campaign. However, they do usually command a higher price. This is because it is not a widely available list that any business can purchase. On the other hand, the list is exclusive to your business. You purchasing a list of this kind will mean your competitors are not able to. This can be crucial in giving your business a competitive advantage. Furthermore, with GDPR coming into the equation, all data used from May onwards needs to be opted-in for that particular marketing campaign. A mass mailing list may not necessarily be compliant.

The correct data for your marketing campaign

Through providing marketing and data services for many years, we work on a wide variety of B2B and B2C marketing campaigns. We understand how data works. Whichever industry/demographics/location etc you target, it must be correct for your business. In order to maximise the ROI, the marketing data being used must be in line with your business goals.

This does not necessarily mean you should always choose quantity over quality or vice versa. As mentioned above, if you offer a widely available product that anyone can use, quantity is key. It will ensure your name gets out there and seen by as many people as possible. Alternatively, if you operate in a niche or want to target specific records, a smaller, more targeted data list will yield higher results.

It is essential that you research into the different sellers on the market. As your marketing will influence how people will view your brand, you need to be confident that you are purchasing from the right business. You also need to ensure you are purchasing from a business that is GDPR compliant. Failing to do so can result in heavy fines for your business.

Skills of those using the list

If you purchase a marketing data list to undertake a telemarketing campaign, then the skills of the callers will greatly influence the outcome of the campaign. A list can be highly accurate and the ideal target market. However, if the caller is not experienced, rude, unhelpful etc then the results will be poor. Alternatively, a highly skilled caller is engaging and answers questions. It is common for a prospect who was originally not interested to be turned purely as a result of the person on the other end of the phone.

This is often a crucial decision that a business makes when purchasing a marketing data list. if they do not feel they have the skills, or staff available to work the data, they may outsource to a marketing agency. As marketing agencies have staff that work with data every day all day, they have the skills to generate the best results possible for your campaigns. This can also work out as a much cheaper alternative than having to recruit and train a new member of staff.


Data is a tricky subject to definitively state quantity or quality. It is all dependant on what you are trying to achieve. For brand awareness and mass product sales, quantity is great. It will hit more people and get your name out there. However, for specific leads, sales, niche markets etc quality is crucial. A more targeted, accurate list will perform at a much higher rate and provide a greater ROI for your budget. Both therefore can be the right option, depending on what you want to achieve.

Data cleansing however is crucial. With GDPR coming in May, any data you purchase needs to be compliant, opted-in and available for the contact methods you wish to utilise. This will ensure that not only will it perform at a high rate, but you will also be following the relevant data regulations. This places a greater emphasis on data quality.

Impact Marketing are a data owner and are able to provide a number of business and consumer marketing data lists. We cleanse these lists regularly to ensure they are of the highest accuracy. We can also build bespoke lists if you so require. Get in touch today and we will be happy to tell you more about our marketing services.

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Ian Smith

About Ian Smith

Ian, AKA "Professor Googles too much" is our resident researcher and content writer. He is the one we turn to when we have something that we don't understand.

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