The adage “You get what you pay for” serves as both a welcome and warning when it comes to choosing goods and services. Nowhere is that more apparent than with free or cheap physician email lists.
There are plenty of low-cost healthcare leads out there on the internet, and given how time-consuming and costly sourcing lists for email marketing campaigns can be, it might sound like a smart time- and money-saving measure.
There are significant drawbacks, however, to going the free/cheap route: They’re almost always compiled by data-scraping bots that trawl healthcare websites looking for HCP contact information, and often come with many disadvantages that make the ostensible cost-savings more trouble than they’re worth.
Here’s a useful breakdown of everything you need to know about free and cheap HCP lists and why you should work with HCP marketing experts who own and utilize exclusive lists instead.
Higher Costs Overall
If given the choice between spending a lot of money or little to nothing, you’d go for the latter, right? Well, sure. Everyone likes saving money, especially when it comes to developing and disseminating HCP email marketing campaigns, which demand extra thought and care.
There’s a stark difference between short-term savings, which always end up costing more in the long run, and spending more upfront to generate greater revenue overall.
Though you might save some money by looking for free or cheap physician lists, you could end up paying much more in the following ways:
- Being Reported for Spam
- Facing Significant Penalties for Sending Spam
- Low Engagement Rates
- Campaigns That Cost a Lot to Develop and Net Next to Zero ROI
Marketing to No One
How often do these free and cheap lists get updated? Not often, unfortunately. In fact, most of them are one and done, so there’s no guarantee you’re contacting active HCPs receptive to your messages. These email lists often lead to low deliverability, low engagement, less segmentation, and low ROI, which defeats the entire purpose of marketing your new product in the first place.
More Trouble Than They’re Worth
The healthcare marketing industry has many rules and regulations—for good reason. The products and services being promoted are often a matter of life and death.
Substandard lists are not regularly updated, or clean, which means you’ll be sending messages to:
- HCPs Who Do Not Want to Be Contacted
- Dead Email Addresses
- Duplicate Contacts
Emailing anyone without permission is a huge no-no that can and does negatively impact marketing campaigns in numerous ways. From alienating potential qualified leads to being reported for spam and facing significant fines (up to $16,000 per email sent, per the CAN-SPAM Act), any invasive email marketing is a bad idea. Furthermore, emailing HCPs without permission can result in additional potential penalties, so the risks involved with using free/cheap lists are very real—and very costly.
Collaborate With Experts
There’s a significant difference between saving a little cash in the short term and significant money in the long run by increasing ROI. The best way to engage the right HCPs every time and achieve the latter is to work with a partner that has access to frequently updated, proprietary lists, and knows how and when to disseminate messaging to maximize reach.