Lycos Europe has teamed up with database marketing company Coad, Cole & Burey (CCB) to launch Fast.leads, which lets direct marketers collect information about consumer usage and purchase intentions in real time, build databases of likely prospects and contact those prospects immediately.
Lycos Europe commercial director Duncan Dunlop says that although the basic collection mechanism – online questionnaires – has been used for almost as long as the Net has been around, “What is different is that we are giving marketers the names of real people who wish to buy something now, in real time. This is an industry first.”
Also, Dunlop adds, “Marketers own the data entirely.”
In addition to basic contact information, marketers can collect data on product or brand ownership and usage, purchasing intentions and so on. Information can be passed directly to a call centre for immediate action or used to generate targeted e-mail ads.
Data is collected through specially formatted online questionnaires that appear whenever users log in to one of the Lycos.co.uk products (chat, mail, mobile, Love@Lycos or Web builder). Basic information, such as name, address and phone number, will be generated automatically from their Lycos registration forms, cutting the amount of time spent typing in data and reducing the likelihood of consumers failing to complete the forms. In tests, Lycos and CCB say that response rates can be as high as ten per cent.
In return for providing some personal information and opting in to being contacted by e-mail or telephone, consumers will be offered incentives in the form of prizes or money-off offers, to provide data.
Because basic information is already available from Lycos, Fast.leads questionnaires can be targeted by gender, age and postcode.
CCB managing director David Cole says: “Data is the lifeblood of our industry. Without fresh sources of data, response rates will continue to decline.”