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Why purchased lists are a bad idea

Sending to purchased lists is always a bad idea. Here's why:

  • Ineffective. The majority of email addresses on purchased lists are typically either inactive (the account has been dormant for years) or never were valid in the first place (like no-reply email addresses). And yes, this includes even those lists that claim to be "verified" and/or "spam free". You are paying for email addresses that do not work.
  • Spam Traps. Purchased lists always contain spam traps. If you send email to a spam trap, it's a guarantee that the sender will be flagged as a spammer and their IP address blocked.
  • Not Targeted. The people on purchased lists have not heard from you before. They have not given you permission to email them. As such, the odds of them reporting your email as spam are very, very high. This applies even to "industry-targeted" mailing lists.
  • Bad Branding. Do you really want your brand associated with spamming?
  • Illegal. Sending unsolicited email is against the law in many countries.
  • Grounds for Termination. Sending to a purchased list is grounds for termination of your Direct Mail account.

Sending to purchased lists is a terrible way to try and grow your business. If you're looking for effective ways to grow your subscribe base, check out this helpful article, instead.

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