A Q&A for list owners curious about generating revenue from their list

  • How does it work? Quite simply, companies pay you to be able to contact your customer database. Top
  • Why would I do that? Database marketing has become a great source of passive income for companies around the world. And because you maintain control over the process (who rents your list and what offers they are allowed to make), there is very little downside to you. Top
  • Do my customers know I rented my list? Not at all. Think about the mail you get each day. Do you have any idea how you end up getting on a mailer’s radar? When a business rents your list, they are not paying to have you give them a recommendation – to sponsor them with your customers, if you will. They are simply getting contact information about a group of people they feel might be responsive to their product or service. Top
  • You say I maintain control over the process – how? When a company wants to rent your list, they are required to submit a sample of the offer they will be making to the list. You have the ability and right to approve or deny their request. You maintain as much or as little control over the process as you wish. Some list owners give us carte blanche to rent their list to any business that is willing to pay for the service. Most have designated someone in their company to approve or deny rental requests.Top
  • Is this going to take a lot of my time and resources? Definitely not. We make the process easy for you. Here is basically how it works – step by step:
    1. You provide us with the portion of your database you feel comfortable with renting.
    2. We prepare your database for rental. This involves, among other things, scanning your database for duplicate entries, removing invalid entries, and processing your database through the United States Postal Service’s National Change of Address (NCOA) database.
    3. We market your database to prospective mailers.
    4. We process orders and present them to you for approval. This process usually occurs by fax or email. You simply provide us with the information you will need from each mailer to be able to approve or deny their rental request (e.g. the company making the offer; the product being offered; a copy of the mail piece being sent; etc.), and we get the information for your review. Your interaction is only with us, and we make it quick and convenient for you.
    5. We fill the approved orders – including any specific requests the mailer might have made (e.g. specific geographic requests, available demographic information, etc.).
    6. We collect payment for the orders.
    7. Once payment is received, we send you a check with a detailed accounting of the order.Top
  • What do I get paid? The standard breakdown of payment for a list order is as follows: 60% of the funds collected go to the list owner (you); 20% goes to the list manager (in this case, us); and 20% goes to the list broker representing the mailer who has rented your list. In this way, it is much the same as a real estate transaction, in which you have a homeowner, a listing real estate agent representing the homeowner, and a selling real estate agent representing the homebuyer.The rental fee for your list will be on a per name basis, and will be determined prior to offering the list to the market. We will make a recommendation to you of what we believe to be a fair market value for your list, based upon similar lists already being offered. A typical rental rate might be $100.00 per thousand names, or $.10 per name.Top
  • When do I get paid? Typically, we send out list order payments on a weekly or monthly basis, depending on how often the list is being rented. Payments are made for all rental fees received prior to the date the checks are cut. Basically, we pay when we get paid.It is important to note that most mailers expect terms on their list order payments – net-30 from the actual mail date is common. Thus, you might approve a list order on January 15 for a mailer sending a mail campaign on February 20. The mailer is required to remit payment within thirty days of the mail date. So, we receive payment on March 22. You would receive your check on the next payment cycle after March 22.

    List owners oftentimes get impatient when waiting for payment for their list rentals – especially when they first put a list on the market. The important thing to remember is that mail, in general, is a process that takes a good deal of time. The key is starting a pipeline that pays consistently, once the pipeline starts flowing. Top

  • You said there is preparation involved in getting my list to market. What is that going to cost me? Nothing! The preparation process is part of the service we provide for you. Top
  • Can I get a copy of my list after it has been “cleaned?” Of course! It is a great opportunity for you to update your customer files with the most current information. It also can save you money on future mailings – the list most companies choose first when doing a mailing is their own. Top
  • What do I have to do to market my list? Nothing! We take care of all the marketing and renting of your list. The only responsibility you will have is approving list orders and cashing list rental checks. Top
  • What ongoing expenses will be incurred with renting my list? On a regular basis (quarterly, at least), the list will need to be reprocessed through the United States Postal Service’s National Change of Address database (NCOA). It is not uncommon for 10% – 20% of a database to experience address changes each year. Maintaining your database is part of the service we provide you – including the expense associated with doing so. Top
  • Do the companies renting my list have to know it is my list? It certainly helps if they do know, but it is not required. Many companies choose to offer their list with just a generic company description attached to the list (e.g. Mama’s Whole Grain Bread = “Bread Buyers”). Top
  • Do names ever get too old to rent? Not necessarily. There is no question that newer names are more appealing to mailers looking to rent a list. That being said, a mailer will continue to rent a list as long as it keeps performing well for them. We will make sure the contact information for older names remains valid. The best thing you can do to maintain their appeal is to update your list with new names. Top