Be careful about buying lists for Lead Generation - keep it organic

Updated: Jul 8

Leads you purchase won't know you.

"We can buy in lists". Think carefully because the people on these lists will more than likely have 'opted in' on some other website when signing up to something - they didn't opt in to receive anything from you or your company. The messages you send to them are therefore unwanted messages and sending unwanted messages is intrusive, not inviting. If the prospect has never been to your website and indicated an interest in your services, products or your industry, then you will be interrupting them.

Don't let your comms get flagged as spam

When people don't opt to receive messages from you specifically, then there is a high likelihood they could flag your messages as spam and this could be quite dangerous for you. Because not only does this train their inbox to show only emails they want to see, it indicates to their email provider which emails to filter out.

Don't get blacklisted

Once enough people flag your messages as spam, you go on a blacklist, which is then shared with other email providers and once you get on the blacklist, it's really difficult to get taken off it. Furthermore, your IP Reputation will likely be harmed. Not good.

Is organic better?

In my opinion, it's better to generate leads organically rather than to buy them.

Tweepsmap has written about ways to get more organic followers on Twitter and says " when you gain followers organically, you get them without any direct effort. You aren't asking - you're implying, you're enticing. You also never want to buy followers, so acquiring followers organically should be on the top of your list." [July 2021]

What's the difference between organic, paid and total reach?

In this instance Paid Reach is the total number of unique people who were shown your post as a result of advertisements. Organic reach is the total number of unique people who were shown your post through unpaid distribution, and total reach is the number of unique people who saw your posts, regardless of where they saw it. If your post reaches a person organically and through an ad, that person will be included in organic reach, paid reach and total reach - got all that?


Since I wrote this blog in 2017, GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) has come in to law, said to be the toughest privacy and security law in the world. It imposes obligations onto organisations anywhere, so long as they target or collect data related to people in the EU.

Q. Do you buy in lists for your promotional or other mailings?

Leave a comment about your experience. Tell us if it has worked for you, or not.

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