During my introduction into the marketing world, the first thing I was taught about marketing lists was that no list was perfect. Still true today and believe me I’ve looked. Over the last of 10 years being in this business, I have seen enough information shared about what kinds, amounts requires, integrity, vendors, and costs to fill a stadium about these lists. A lot of that information was shared from user experience, market research, and from opinions and inquiries from interested parties. What I haven’t seen is an interview with a data base to tell its side of the story. So lately, I have started thinking more about what the lists think about us and less what we had to say about the lists.
Allow me to introduce Listopher Datason – CEO of Prospect Bound – An advocacy group for aimless and mistreated leads. He started his career with little value now commands a good wage, has been classified in so many different ways he almost forgot from where he hailed, lived in many homes and in many countries, and recently received an endorsement from the Marketing List Union for bravery and perseverance. He agreed to Q&A session with us – and it went like this:
Interviewer: L D, many users complain that it’s oftentimes difficult to find you or your pals in their systems even after they had recent conversation with you.
Listopher: We sometimes get scared man – And have to hide. In my case they dumped me in a black hole with thousands of other people. Older folks, younger folks, people with no purpose being there and even some amputees bro. The worst part was the amount of weak and dead brothers and sisters that we saw lying around. And even they got called up to the front before me, freaked me out – no joke. They gave me no compass, no ID, not my our resume from previous meetings. So we may or may not have found a corner and stayed there until it made sense to come out. We can fix that.
MOTS: If you tag, classify and segment your lists after your conversations or attempts, it will make your retrieval task much cleaner, simpler and meaningful. A good scrub of incomplete or outdated data in your system will always reveal the value within.
Interviewer: You don’t wear the nice clothes or belong to fancy clubs, but you aren’t a ‘deal’ either. Why should someone pick you over these other flashy or cheaper guys?
Listopher: It all depends my friend. The country club life is good if you can afford it and maintain the dues. Some of my friends say you meet real influential people there. Others say that they didn’t meet a lot of people there, and couldn’t afford to stick around long enough to make it work. However, if that works for your agenda and can afford it – great. My brothers on the cheaper end are hustlers by nature and they will say and do anything for the job. Often they offer up their service in large gangs but most times they carry no ammunition saying “you didn’t pay enough for that”. Their aspiration is the ‘dialing for dollars’ badge. You know my background, I have been around the block and my people upgraded my appearance as I grew up. They also introduced me to good folks who developed me along the way and told me I will be great one day. So I am proud to be called ‘good data’ and will work hard for them.
MOTS: You can’t make bad data better nor can you make very expensive and subscription based lists affordable, but you can always make good data great.
Interviewer: What advice would you give to someone trying to understand how to acquire your services?
Listopher: Great question. First they should decide who they want to work with and discuss their initiative in detail to make the best selection? The gang type is seldom the best choice neither is the country club type always necessary. Good hard working lists can do the job. Also, you shouldn’t ask all of us to show up at the same time. You may change your mind on where and with whom you want to do business with, often in the middle of a project, and being able to call on different teams will help and save you money. We also think that you should have a place for us to live where you can find us anywhere easily. I would also suggest you keep that house clean and don’t invite too many people to stay over without giving them rooms, instructions and labels. This isn’t a party; we all need to know what our function is. And finally, understand not all of us will grow up to be prospects, but you can learn from all our experiences during that journey. It will help you have better relationships with us in the future.
MOTS: Review your data before starting your projects, +85% integrity good. Procure in stages to allow yourself flexibility if change is required. A CRM or good reporting tool makes prospecting a hell of a lot easier. If your data is selected with thought, the call outcomes (good or bad), if adhered to, can help narrow your scope for the next procurement.
Interviewer: Do you like your job?
Listopher: I do most of the time. It’s my hope that people understand that we are key to the sales process and effort should be made to treat us the right way. So if you were planning on just having a ‘one night stand’ or speed dating and moving on to the next person, don’t waste my time or yours. The gang folks don’t mind that but they will make you work for it without much in return. The country club folks will make you pay for that mistake. It takes more than one date to get to the promise land – ‘prospect status baby’, that’s just how it works today. Also, if you can warm up the car for us during our winter season before you send us out; with some good collateral or additional marketing activities we can hitch to the ride, that’d be great. We are more effective and relevant then. And finally, most times we only get 30 seconds to make a good impression; we love it when you guys are prepared. After all, we are trying to get there too.
MOTS: A marketing list can make or break your sales initiatives. Complimentary activities, a good image or web presence, and relevant collateral help ‘break the ice’ creating a warm environment for the value proposition that should follow.
I hope you have enjoyed hearing what Mr. Listopher Datason had to say. He and his associates always have something valuable to say if we organize their thoughts and listen to