Lessons in Marketing — Lists

Tonight’s lesson in marketing – LISTS.

Never believe anyone who tells you that their list is complete, especially if they want to sell the list to you. Yes, it may have 1001 things on it — but how many of them are actually useful for your purposes? Even if the list is free, someone had to spend time compiling it — what was their agenda? In short, any list you get is going to be no more than a starting point if you want to market effectively.

What brought all this to mind is that I have spent spare moments over the past week or two taking the information from the Midsouth Convention and Visitors Bureau and other sources and compiling a list of hotels/motels in the Memphis area.

My hope was to find those that fit one or more of my criteria (highest price tier – because people who pay more for their rooms are more likely to be able and willing to pay a Notary to travel to them and to have documents that need Notarizing after hours when I can charge more; most rooms – because the more rooms they have, the more likely they are to have a guest who needs my services; and/or nearby – because if they are nearby, they will be easier for me to service).

After I finished the list earlier today, I sorted it by each criteria, typed up my mailing label database, double-checked to be sure every hotel I wanted was on the list and printed the labels. Postcards are now mailed. I will follow up with these particular hotels in a week or two.

Then, as I am driving today, I see 2 hotels that are nearby that were not on the list at all! I just checked for them online and found 3 more nearby that were not on the list. Heavy sigh! This means some of my targets did not get hit. And it causes me to wonder why the CVB did not include them. Maybe they had to pay a fee of some sort to be on the CVB list — ah, there is the agenda of the list compiler coming into play!

Lesson for the day — the only list that is 100% perfect for your use is one you made yourself. Today. Before any of the data on it changed.

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About Tim Gatewood

55+, male, widowed (May 2016). Mobile notary public and signing agent, freelance writer, and ordained minister. Science fiction and fantasy fan, willing servant to cats, avid reader and collector of books and other stuff. Please see my websites (including this blog and others) for more info on me and what I think about the issues of the day.
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