Business Data Lists & Mailing Lists

Email Lists

Over the last few years there has been a massive increase in the desire to source quality email lists for direct marketing.

Generic Email Addresses

Good quality email lists will cost a little more than basic business data lists and will include generic email addresses too (e.g., “info@”, “enquiries@” etc).

Because some companies operate solely from their generic email address it is advisable to include these email lists within the scope of the selection criteria. Examples of businesses which are most likely to trade solely from a generic email address include small offices, car showrooms, hairdressers and restaurants. It is always more advisable to focus more towards the type of business you wish to target, and if (for example) restaurants are a good target, then the generic email addresses should be just as good for you as the personalised ones. After all, they do still go to a human being’s in-box; typically a senior person within the business.

Email Population

The percentage of companies (from a designated business list) which have an email present will vary according to the industry classification. Whilst offices within the Service Sector will have a high email population, the sole trading labourer (builder, plumber) will be considerably less likely to use an email address. And those that do regularly trade from Yahoo or Hotmail type email accounts, rather than company-specific website addresses.


Email lists decay much quicker than general business data. And in addition to this there are an increasing number of spam filters and other server tools which can reject an incoming prospect email bulletin from your marketing machine. Figures vary massively from different email data providers, but as a guideline:

5% – 10% in “hard” bounces would appear to be a typical level of quality across the marketing data industry. Any business guaranteeing less than 5% is worthwhile talking to.
Hard bounces are effectively “dead” email addresses. “not known at this address” would be a typical response when marketing to them. As previously mentioned, email data decays quickly, so there will always be some hard bounces from any business email list you purchase.

10% – 15% in “soft” bounces would appear to be today’s norm. These are bounced emails which have simply been rejected by the server of the prospect you are attempting to contact. The email address itself is valid enough, just that the company’s spam filters are not letting your message through. Unfortunately this is something that no email list provider has control over, so is considerably harder to offer any form of guarantee with.

There will probably be more bounce-backs if the emails are sent out directly from an email account, rather than from a dedicated email bulleting server system.

Responsiva’s Guarantee

Responsiva’s emails will typically yield a total of 15% in bounce-backs, and we are happy to refund any hard bounces in excess of 5%. That is provided this is reported within 30 days of supply, and the split between hard and soft bounces is clearly shown.