Association Mailing Lists – The Best Way to Target Your Prospects

Association Mailing Lists - The Best Way to Target Your ProspectsDirect Mail Campaigns

Business-to-business direct mail campaigns target many specific individuals and companies based on industry, niche or job description. Another way to attract the attention of people who are highly interested in your specific offer is by targeting a unique database of association members who belong to a group specific to your ideal audience.

In the past, people marketed to association members by joining the association and attending events or accessing the list of involved people directly. Companies such as Bethesda List Center, who specialize in B2B direct mail marketing solutions, use more effective methods for building collections of contact information for other companies or professionals who wish to market to them. You can also find industry lists, but their list of associations may give you the precise database of audience members who are most likely to respond to your offer.

Are association lists the absolute best way to target your prospects? The answer to this question is “Yes” as long as what your company offers aligns with the purpose of the particular group. The reasons behind and methods for successful direct mail campaign are outlined below.

Why Choose Association Mailing Lists?

People who are in associations must take action in order to be included in the membership list. They not only work within a particular industry or job description, but they have expressed interest in networking with others who also do and learning more information about their chosen career or specialization.

A database of association members will include people that have already demonstrated that they are hungry for information about new ideas, products and services within their industry. If you represent a business to business marketing department or company, this level of target specification can only result in a greater return on your advertising investment.

How Marketing to Association Lists Differ That General Industry Lists

People associated with a specific industry can be accumulated simply because of the job they have. There is no specific indication that they are interested in being marketed to or even exploring new products or services in that industry. It might simply be their job and not of any particular importance to them. Sending direct mail to these people may spark some interest, but the returns will not be as great as if you market to those with a personal investment.

Joining an association usually does not happen automatically. Someone needs to opt in to the group or, by virtue of their profession, become a member of it through some action they took. They, and their company or office by extension, is already verified as having interest in possible products or services also associated with that industry.

Associations do some of your contact vetting work for you. They only include people who accept membership, so no one involved will be directly opposed to contact of interest to their industry or career. They also weed out old or incorrect contacts on a regular basis, which makes the association mail list even more responsive. In some cases, they even pre-approve the marketing contacts that their association can get, so your company can create a direct mail piece that will be acceptable and therefore more effective.

A basic business rule of thumb is specifically demonstrated by this topic. The more highly targeted your offer is to a more specific group of people, the more effective it will be and the greater profit you will realize. The secret is to figure out which association to match with which offer.

Finding the Right List of Associations in Multiple Industries

When the lists you consider come from a trusted source, you know you are getting the most current information possible about people who joined professional associations. If the product or service you offer does not specifically target one highly unique group, you need to find the right list of associations and determine which would be most effective for your direct mail campaign efforts.

In most cases, a company that offers general services or many diverse product lines may opt to target industry lists rather than very specific associations. However, choosing a particular product or service to offer can actually result in greater response than a general marketing message will.

Associations exist for nearly any subject or industry. Some of the most popular to send business-to-business direct mail marketing pieces to include medical, construction, engineering, transportation, education and nonprofit associations. In each of these main groups there are multiple smaller and more specific lists to target. The more specific you get, the greater the chance of a positive return on investment you will receive.

Some of the specific association mail list options from Bethesda List Center include:

  • APTA – The American Physical Therapy Association
  • BMES — The Biomedical Engineering Society Members association
  • ARDMS — The American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonographers
  • AASHTO — The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials
  • NASET — The National Association of Special Education Teachers
  • CSI — The Construction Specifications Institute
  • Columbia Books Association executives
  • and more…

When you market to a database of association members, it is more important than ever to present a professional and trustworthy impression. If individuals, offices or companies who are members of these associations believe that they are receiving unwanted mail, it could backfire on the group as a whole. Any marketer who engages in such activities will lose their ability to advertise effectively to the group members.

Business-to-Business Direct Mail

Professional associations not only make sure that all members are an appropriate fit for the group, but can also recommend for or against outside companies and their products and services. This makes the association itself type of gatekeeper or influencer that can either destroy or assist your marketing efforts. When you engage in business to business marketing directly to a company or business to consumer advertising to an individual, you will not get this type of potential endorsement.

Business-to-business direct mail campaigns

After perusing a potential list of associations to send your marketing message to, and deciding which would best respond to your offer, it is important to create a direct mail piece that targets these individuals based on their specific interest. For direct mail campaigns, aim for professionalism rather than emotions and always back up your offers with excellent products and service.

  • Business Sales Leads
  • You will be contacted soon!
    Note: We never share your Email address.

David James

President, Bethesda List Center, Inc + Bethesda Emedia Marketing.