Mailing & Telemarketing Lists
Answers To Commonly Asked Questions!
How closely can I pinpoint my marketing area when I order a list?
All lists are available by "Sectional Center" (SCF) designation (the first 3-digits of a zip code). Most are also available by "County" and 5-digit zip code selection.
What is a "Sectional Center" (SCF)?
A "Sectional Center"(SCF) is a geographic area whose boundaries have been set by the U.S. Postal Service to facilitate the delivery of mail. Unfortunately, these geographic areas do not ordinarily coincide with either town or county boundaries. However, as many lists are sold by "Sectional Center"(SCF) designation, it is imperative that you fully understand which counties and/or zip codes are included in your local "Sectional Center" (SCF) marketing area. If in doubt, inquire.
If I order a list by SCF (first 3-digits of a zip code) or by county designation, will my list contain names from all areas of the SCF or County?
Yes. Mailing lists ordered by SCF or County will contain names, selected randomly, from all zip codes within the geographic area(s) requested. Orders received by 5-digit zip code(s) will be filled in priority order, as listed.
What is the minimum number of names I can buy?
Each list has its own minimum order requirement expressed either in dollars or quantity.
What if there aren't enough names in my area to meet a minimum order requirement?
If enough names are not available in the geographic area requested to meet a list's minimum order requirement, you will be given the option of expanding your geographic selection area or receiving whatever names are available and paying the minimum order charge.
Where does CIS get its names from?
We use hundreds of compiling sources for our mailing list program. Included are direct compilations from known source data, i.e. trade directories, membership rosters, state and federal records, etc., as well as names generated from current subscription lists of major trade publications. Names are also generated through business and consumer response sources including direct mail purchases and warranty card returns.
Do I get exclusive use of my list or is the same list provided to others?
Once a list is rented, it will not be rented to another sales representative of the same company for 60 days. It may, however be rented to another company. Realistically speaking, the chance of anyone else receiving your exact names is quite remote as we constantly rotate the names rented from our files. That is, if the file contains 10,000 names of prospects with the same characteristics, we would rent the first 1,000 names to the first person, the second 1,000 to the next person and so forth. As our customer base encompasses all 50 states, Canada, and Puerto Rico, and as we offer more than 200 list options, in more than 45,000 zip codes, it is extremely unlikely that anyone else would ever receive your exact names in any 60-day period.
Does CIS provide any guarantees concerning the deliverability of its lists?
Due to consumer and business mobility, each list will contain names that have become undeliverable by mail. If the number of such undeliverable names on any list, exceeds 7 % of the total provided for that list, CIS will provide a pro rata refund, for the list cost only of any undeliverable names in excess of said seven percent (7 %), on condition that the claim for refund is received by CIS within sixty (60) days of the date the list was originally ordered, and is accompanied by the undeliverable mail for which a refund is requested. CIS makes no warranty, representation or guarantee of the revenue that may be generated from the rental of its lists.
How often are lists updated?
Update schedules vary with the list source upon which the compilation is based. A limited number of lists, compiled from directories or association records are recompiled annually. Most however, like business lists, consumer lists at home address and "hotline" lists are updated weekly.
In what format are lists delivered?
CIS's standard list delivery method is electronically, via e-mail, or hard copy in list format. The choice is yours. If you elect to receive your list via e-mail, it will be forwarded in comma-delimited format that will open automatically in "Excel", and can be exported into most word processing and/or client management programs. Lists can also be ordered on CD or disk at an additional cost of $30 per order, on pressure sensitive labels at an additional cost of $10 per 1,000 labels, or on telemarketing index cards at an additional cost of $25 per 1,000 cards.
How often can I use a prospect list?
Most lists can be used, without restriction, for one year from the date the order is delivered by CIS. Certain lists, however, such as magazine subscription lists or lists compiled from professional organizations are only available for a one-time usage. You will be notified if the list you have ordered, or inquired about, is restricted to a one-time usage.
What information do I receive when I order a list?
You will receive the name, company name (if applicable), address, and telephone number (where legally available with submission of a SAN number) of those prospects meeting your selection criteria in the geographic areas you've identified.
Do all lists include phone numbers?
No, lists compiled from trade association records or magazine subscription files do not contain telephone numbers. Included in each list description on this site is a statement as to whether or not telephone numbers are available with the list.
I can't seem to find more than 65% of the names provided on my list in the local telephone directory. Is this a reflection of the accuracy of the list?
No. The general rule of thumb is that you will only be able to find 45% to 70% of the names found on any mailing list in a telephone directory or cross street directory. The explanation for this will vary with the individual list but basically reflects the high number of unlisted telephone numbers. Also, the names provided might be so new to your area as to not yet show up in directories, as they are only published once per year.
How long will it take to get my list?
Generally, it will take between 2 and 7 business days, depending on the list and format selected. Certain lists within each list category, printed in bold type, are available by e-mail within six (6) hours of receipt of an order.
How do I pay for the list(s) I order?
Amex, Visa, MasterCard or check. Note, however, that if you elect to pay by check, your payment must be received before your order will be forwarded.
I received my list and it contained fewer names than the online count. Why?
Lists are constantly being updated, with new names added, and inaccurate names deleted. CIS's online count system, however, is only updated twice per week. Thus, it is possible, if you have ordered all available names in a geographic area, that the number of names available will vary slightly from the count you obtained online. If additional names have been added to the file, you will be notified and given the opportunity to increase your order. If names have been deleted from the file, you will receive, and be charged for, only those names that meet your selection criteria.
Are volume purchase discounts available if I purchase a significant number of names?
Yes. There are savings to be realized if you place an order for 5,000 or more names from a single list category. Call 800-547-LIST ext. 200 for details.
Does CIS provide software support?
No. If you elect to receive your list on CD, disk or by e-mail, it will be forwarded in comma-delimited format that will open automatically in Excel, unless you request a different format at the time you place your order.