Drilling down and mining the best prospects for email campaigns has become the holy grail of today's direct marketer. While the cost of direct email marketing is much lower than conventional direct mail marketing, the need to get the most bang for you marketing dollar is still a priority. Therefore, you want to ensure that you have chosen your target audience wisely and that you have set realistic benchmarks for your campaign. This entails more than writing the perfect marketing message or having the perfect product. It requires you to know your prospective clients.
You have one of the greatest tools at your disposal in the form of your current, client database. You need to take it upon yourself to find out why they came to you and even more important, why do those that come back, keep coming back. Speak with your clients, or send out a survey. Get to know them inside and out. The extra attention that you give to your loyal customers has a nice side effect in some cases by creating an advocate for your business and a source for viral marketing.
In order to define the demographic or the customer model for your email campaign, the best resource is you house list. Once you have gleaned all you can from your house list, you may want to send it out to a reputable database service so that they can find more customers in their lists that will meet you requirements.
You need to ensure that you have defined your target audience as well as possible before proceeding. Remember, the final, most often overlooked phase of this process is running tests to verify that the message.your sending is having the desired effect on your target audience.