List-Rental Prices Begin to Stabilize; B2C Suffers Most

July 24, 2009

This article is included in these additional categories:

B2B | Email | Financial Services | Personalization | Retail & E-Commerce

Prices for marketing list rentals have begun to stabilize across all major categories, though permission-based B2C and B2B email list prices show the largest decline vs. last year, according to the Summer 2009 List Price Index from Worldata.?

The index, which serves as a barometer for pricing and trending of list rentals, shows that permission-based email B2C experienced the largest price decrease and percent drop from the previous year.


The second-largest price decrease occurred in permission-based email B2B lists, while permission-based international email showed a small decrease from last quarter, indicating that businesses are expanding marketing budgets globally. The average international file is $404/M, decreasing $3/M from the last two previous quarters.

“This quarter we are noticing prices within many of the categories have started to level-off, a sign of the times that the economy is attempting to stabilize,” said Ray Tesi, SVP of Worldata. “Consumer email files are still dropping, showing the most price activity from last summer to this summer. The consumer market is still evolving in order to keep marketers interested.”

Summer 2008 vs. Summer 2009

The comparison of lists in the most recent Summer 2009 List Price Index vs. last summer’s index reveals? significant variations not only in individual categories, but in media types as well,? Worldata said.

The following graphs help to illustrate these variations, and are explained below.

The Straight Average Graph shows the average price per thousand (PPM) of the lists grouped in each category.


Major findings:

  • Overall, PPM averages for Summer 2009 have stabilized from Spring 2008, but still reflect the generous decrease in averages from Summer 2008 to now. However, specific groups within categories demonstrated significant changes worth reporting.
  • Permission-based email B2B is the highest-priced category, with a Summer 2009 straight average price of $288/M, a decrease of $11/M from last year.
  • Public sector ranks the second highest-priced category range, with Summer 2009 straight average prices of $174/M, increasing $4/M from last year.
  • Donors remains the lowest-priced category, with an average list price of $84/M, increasing $1/M over last year.

The Straight Dollar Change Graph shows the dollar amount that the average price for each category has changed within the specified 12-month period.


Major findings:

  • The largest price decrease occurred in the permission-based B2C category, which dropped $50/M from Summer 2008. A major decrease has occurred every few months in this category, showing a small drop from three months ago. However, over the last 12 months, averages show a huge decrease from the previous year.
  • Newsletters showed the greatest price increase over Summer 2008, with a straight average price of $170/M, a $7/M increase.
  • The lowest price decreases occurred within the business mags/controlled and business merchandise buyers categories, which both dropped $4/M from last year.
  • The only category that maintained the same pricing was attendees/members, which stayed at $128/M.

The Straight Average Percent Dollar Change Graph takes into consideration the straight average for each category.


Major findings:

  • Permission-based B2C reflects the largest percent decrease at 29.41%.
  • The lowest percentage decrease occurred in the business mags/controlled category with a 2.70% decrease.
  • The largest percentage increases occurred in the newsletters and public sector categories with a 4.29% and 2.35% increase respectively.

About the index: The index is reported quarterly, providing a comparison of list prices during any given 12-month period and tracking price fluctuations, as cost per thousand (CPM), for lists in various categories. The lists evaluated are grouped into categories, such as consumer merchandise buyers, donors, databases, business magazines, etc.


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