There are various types of email marketing, and each type’s profitability is largely dependent upon the type of leads that you have in your email list. The email list that you use for email marketing is the cornerstone of your email marketing campaign. Let’s look at the types of leads that are available, and which type would be the most optimal for your email marketing campaign according to your company’s overall marketing budget.

Opt-In Email Leads

The opt-in email marketing lead is the best type of lead to use because it is obtained from actual traffic on your website using an opt-in or squeeze page, which means that the lead is likely interested to some extent in what you have to offer. Opt-in basically means that the visitor to your website agrees to receive emails from you or your affiliates. The best types of opt-in leads are double opt-ins where the squeeze page requires that the visitor clicks a link in their email to activate a membership, collect a promotional item like an e-book, or other freebie. Double opt-ins like this give you an added layer of assurance that the lead is interested (to some extent) in you and your products or services. The cost of opt-in leads is very minimal – which can range from zero dollars for basic opt-ins and the end cost of your promo or freebie for double opt-ins. Opt-in email leads should always be used as the foundation for your email list.

Phone Verified Leads

The phone verified lead is a type of opt-in lead that is verifies the visitor’s interest via telephone as opposed to having them click a link in their email. These types of leads can be some of the most profitable because the visitor’s interest has been verified by phone. The down side to phone verified leads is that the administrative costs of phoning the potential lead to verify their interest can be more than many companies want to spend.

Exclusive Leads

Exclusive email marketing leads are purchased leads and they are often the most expensive email leads available for sale. The leads are usually guaranteed to be exclusive (meaning your company will be the only one using them) for around two to three days after purchase. Because most recipients of a marketing email will shop around prior to making a decision about purchasing a service or product anyway, exclusive email leads may in some ways be considered a poor investment. There are some circumstances where you might benefit from their use – such as attempting to beat your competition “to the punch” with a big decrease in an advertised price or a special sale.

 Survey Leads

An expensive but highly effective type of email marketing lead is the survey lead. These leads are obtained when a prospective customer or client fills out an online survey to provide you with information about what interests them. Surveying prospects is usually outsourced to a third part and you pay only for those prospects that are pre-qualified (meaning that they are interested). Based on prospect response to various questions, this type of lead gives you the added benefit of being able to customize your sales “pitch” for each email you send out. Survey leads usually have the highest conversion rates in most cases.

 Shared Email Marketing Leads

Among the cheapest options when obtaining leads, shared email marketing leads are usually the least productive. Shared email leads are leads that are obtained from other companies in exchange for your email leads. This practice can make your opt-in email participants feel vulnerable, as they may not wish to receive emails from other companies. What you get in return may not be worth it – many shared email leads are outdated and useless, which makes them have the lowest conversion rates.