The Joys and Pains of Working With a Mailing List: A Study Using Direct Marketing and Appropriate Sampling Techniques to Gain a Successful Mailing List


This case concerns the use of brokered mailing lists to identify and correspond with potential respondents in a research study. Although the case concerns an example of a mail survey only, the processes of defining the relevant population and then refining the mailing list are just as relevant to the use of Internet email lists obtained from list brokers or from organizations. And the process of examining the list and the returned surveys for representativeness of the chosen population and for the impact of dealing with non-response and partial response are also equally applicable to Internet surveys. Surveys of samples of a population of consumers, professionals, and/or types of organizations are necessary to allow important questions of business management to be examined. This case study presents a systematic process for defining and refining lists of potential sample members at the pre-mailing of the survey stage and then the issues involved in establishing the reliability and generalizability of the returned surveys, prior to data analysis.

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