Why You Should NEVER Buy An Email List

Email marketing is one of the most reliable ways of making money online. In fact if you really want to profit from your online presence, you should definitely use email marketing and start building a list right now. I mean literally now, because the old saying is true: the money is in the list.

And just like with everything, when you’re building a list, the first steps are usually the most difficult ones. You have no experience and no subscribers, so no idea whether what you’re doing is going to work or not. So the obvious solution might be to go ahead and buy an email list. This sounds good enough as money can possibly solve everything in marketing. But if you read my advice on why you should never buy an email list, not only will you understand why this is not the case here, but I’ll also give you a super effective way of getting as many real email subscribers as you want.

The Real Value Of An Email List

To better understand why you should never buy an email list, you need to understand the real value of your list. Because it’s not the list itself. It’s the value of communication.

The real value of an email list is the value of communication.

The real value of an email list is the value of communication

Through your list you can communicate to your subscribers. And what’s even more important, geniune subscribers are open to your communication, at least for some degree. They have opted in to receive your emails in the first place.

Effective email marketing is not just simply sending out emails in bulk. It is about building a relationship with your subscribers. Building trust and than make money based upon that trust in a way that’s beneficial to your subscribers as well.

What Results Can You Expect?

Sending out email to a purchased email list is like standing in the middle of a hostile environment and constantly and violently shouting out what’s on your mind.

Nobody will listen to you. Nobody on that list ever wanted to hear from you after all, just by the definition of a purchased list.

Even if they have a problem you offer a solution to, they don’t even know who you are, they have zero trust in you. In a few words they’re just not open for the communication. This kind of emailing will result in a lot of angry people, a great percentage of unsubscribes from your list and even marking it as spam. And if this happens, your whole email list can easily be banned by your email marketing software. Not talking about the possible legal consequences, see below.

The Real Solution To Your Problem

I bet your real problem is not how to buy an email list, but how to build a list. So let me give you my tips on how to do just that.

It’s just so easy to build a list the right way, I wonder why people even think about buying one. Instead of trying to find a purchased list from whatever source, you can set up a system and start collecting genuine subscribers in no time.

4 Steps To Build An Email List That Converts

  • Create a so called lead magnet. This is something that you’re giving away for free to everyone in exchange of their email addresses. Don’t over-complicate this, just make something useful for your subscribers. Check out my simplest yet best performing lead magnet by subscribing here.
  • Choose your email marketing software. I use and recommend ActiveCampaign (aff link), but it’s really your choice.
  • Create a landing page or squeeze page to capture subscribers. Again you can check out my extremely simple yet effective solution, or use a service like Leadpages (non-aff link).
  • Start running ads to your target market. Don’t try to sell anything in your ad, not even yourself. Just “sell” your lead magnet. In my experience Facebook is the best place to run such ads, but some of my clients have great success with Google Ads too.

    See below one of my best performing ads for email lead generation on Facebook:

Yes, it will cost you money. But you started reading this article with spending money in mind when you’d thought about buying an email list, didn’t you?

And this way you can spend your money on something that’s working. With these ads you’re “buying” subscribers who are interested in your emails and it will be much easier to make money on such a list. Once you start to see the benefits of this solution and make money from your list, you can re-spend chunk of that money on more ads, thus getting more and more subscribers. Trust me, this is exactly what long time online marketers do.

But if you’re still not convinced, let me give you two more reasons never to use a purchased email list.

Email Marketing Platforms Won’t Let You Use A Purchased List

This is as simple as it gets. You need an email marketing software to being able send out your newsletters or drip emails to your subscribers in bulk. And those platforms fight against using lists where the recipients did not give their consent. That is, purchased lists.

Using purchased lists after all should result in such a high percent of bounces and spam complaints that could risk the whole operation of the email marketing platform.

Legal Issues With Buying An Email List

Buying an email list can easily get you in legal trouble in most places. I currently live in the EU, and sending out emails or even just storing email data of people who haven’t intentionally opted in to my list is against the GDPR. I bet you heard about that. And although the CAN-SPAM Act in the US doesn’t require to get the recipient’s consent before sending them commercial email, according to the FTC website “buying lists like that can be risky”. So again, avoid buying emails if you don’t want to get into legal troubles.

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