The most crucial factor for the success of a company’s direct mail campaign is the quality of its business-to-business mailing (B2B) lists. Targeted direct marketing fetches the best responses. Targets for B2B lists are constantly in a flux, however, with businesses constantly opening, closing, and relocating. Inaccurate lists or lists that contain dated information lead to missed targets, which brings the response rate down.A trusted way to boost response rates further is by ensuring that the B2B mailing lists contain data on the companies that will most relate to the advertised product or service. For example, garment manufacturers will have little or no interest in the latest gaming software launched by Microsoft. All it takes is a little planning and research into the target market for a healthy response rate.Mailing list brokers like AllMedia Inc (allmediainc.com) and The List Company (tclists.com) not only provide accurate and updated B2B mailing lists, but also help choose the list that will work best for a marketer’s campaign. These brokers also review the success rate of the lists in past campaigns, and determine the optimum list for a client’s requirements.Trade associations are a great source of mailing lists, as they contain details of the major industry players. For local business players, associations like the Chamber of Commerce are best. Lists can be selected by business size, number of employees or SIC code, among other selection parameters. Dependable sources for lists at the library are the SRDS Direct Marketing List Source(TM) and the Oxbridge Communications National Directory of Mailing Lists.The two main concerns facing the business mail industry are inaccurate lists leading to inefficient marketing campaigns and excess promotional material depleting the environment. The EcoLogical Mail Coalition was founded in 2003 to reduce the cost and minimize the environmental impact of inefficient direct marketing mail practices. The coalition members send information on outdated business contacts to the ‘Red Flag Database’, the B2B marketing industry’s only national, cooperative database, which enables marketers to eliminate these outdated contacts from their business mail lists. The database contains obsolete contact information from more than 6,000 businesses throughout the United States, including more than 200 of the Fortune 1000. Marketers pay a fee for each match against the coalition’s database.