How to Build a Webinar Contacts Database

By Sharat Sharan, John Carucci

As the reach for your webinars becomes more ambitious, chances are that your organization’s database can limit your intended grasp. That’s why it’s important to expand your horizons. One way to grow your audience base involves accessing an additional collection of names.

A database is like the modern equivalent of an address book, and a pretty detailed one at that. This organized collection becomes your pool for inviting people to your webinar.

Made up of customers, contacts, and people associated with your industry, sometimes it draws directly from your customer profiles, whereas other times, it comes from social media followers such as those from LinkedIn. Twitter and Facebook friends, fans, and followers also add to the mix. And yet, sometimes that’s not enough.

Sometimes, to attract a wider swath of potential registrants, you need to look elsewhere. That’s because it’s hard to grow when you constantly draw from your own database, especially when your database is relatively small. When you need to expand your list of contacts, you can build your database in a variety of ways to match your needs.

Services are available that provide access to additional contacts for your invitation list for a fee. These act like the modern version of the mailing lists that companies used to purchase so they could direct-market their products. While you can find ways to bolster your own database, you can also purchase names, much like direct marketers used to buy mailing lists.

Here are some places to get names for your database:

  • Database.com: A powerful, scalable cloud database for building social and mobile applications. Pricing begins at free and climbs steadily based on your needs and your number of users.

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  • Central Address Systems: Provides e-mail lists for consumers and other market segments. Pricing varies based upon your needs.

  • ZoomInfo: A vertical search engine with a database containing more than 95 million profiles of business professionals.

  • NetProspex: NetProspex is another marketing database that provides leads to help B2B (business-to-business) marketers improve their contact data.