Marketing & Communications Centre > Marketing Essentials > Help Sheets > Where do you Buy Access to a List?

Where do you Buy Access to a List?

When buying access to a list – especially for the first time – a common question your group or organisation could have to face is "Where do I get a list from?"

Generally speaking, there are plenty of lists "out there" – if you know where to look or who to approach.

This short help sheet sets out to inform your community group or not-for-profit about where it can buy access to a list, and some quick points about what you should know before buying that access.

It is best used in conjunction with a couple of other help sheets in this section: Buying Access to a List, and: Questions for List Broker Before you Buy Access to a List.

Where to Buy Access to a List

In Australia, the main places to buy or rent access to lists are from list brokers.

As explained in the help sheet Buying Access to a List, list brokers are companies that "specialise in the sourcing of lists, or the creation of new lists".

Another important point to remember is to ensure the list broker you deal with is a reputable one.

If your group needs to work with a list broker, refer to Australian Direct Mail Association (ADMA) website at

List brokers which are members of ADMA have to adhere to a code of ethics, with ADMA having a complaints mechanism in place to deal with any problems that might arise. The ADMA site also allows searches for list brokers by location and interest area.

Another option if your group or organisation is searching for a list is to contact what is known as a mailing house.

Broadly defined, a mailing house is a business that performs one or more of the following services - assembling, packaging, and/or addressing printed materials (for example, direct mail-outs).

Generally a mailing house would then deliver those good to the customer who can then distribute them.

Sometimes mailing houses will have lists of names available for purchase, and can, like list brokers, assemble lists to meet specific requirements.

If you wish to pursue the mailing house option, the ADMA website's search facility ( is again a good place to start. You may notice that some of the mailing house listings on the site are also list brokers!

Key Rules When Buying Access to Lists

To make things a little easier when approaching a list broker or mailing house to buy access to a list, here are three quick rules to remember.
  1. Know roughly what you want – for example, list size, any specific list focus, etc - so you can explain it to the list broker or mailing house.
  2. Know if you want a compiled or response list – for more information on what they are, refer to the Buying Access to a List help sheet.
  3. Have an idea of what you are willing to spend, and, if needed, be willing to modify your list request or budget pending discussions with the list broker or mailing house.

One last piece of advice – shop around. Like any purchase, there may be different prices, quotes or offers your group can take up. Approach more than one list broker or mailing house and find the best quote for what you want.

The information contained on this site is subject to change. Our Community will not be liable for any loss or damage whatsoever coming from reliance placed on all or part of its contents.