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May 08, 2015 By Hendrik-Jan Francke

Lead Scoring Non-business emails

A common assumption many marketers make is that leads with a company email address are more valuable than leads with a gmail/hotmail address.

The belief is that most people use their business email for important messages they know they have to pay attention to and their non-business email for trivial things like receiving coupons from Petsmart or newsletter subscriptions of which they aren't too confident.

These people are using their non-business email to pre-screen your newsletter because the content hasn’t proven itself worthy just yet.

We at Bright Orange Thread wanted to examine this theory so we surveyed a number of B2B marketing manager’s, VP’s and CEO’s to find out how many people use a secondary email for pre-screening newsletters. Thanks to everyone who took the survey! We now have some empirical research on a topic that, until now, has been merely speculation.

To put it simply, the survey results indicate that you shouldn’t judge the quality of a lead based on their email address provider. You should treat each lead equal, regardless of their email service provider.

Here's why we came to that conclusion:

38% Use a Separate Email for Pre-Screening

Which means most people just use one email address for everything. This means that most of your emails and newsletters are not being pre-screened regardless of whether the email is a business address or a non-business address.


You are reaching people at the inbox they consider most important.

You might be wondering why so many people use just one email for everything? Perhaps spam filters have become strong enough to eliminate the need for using a separate email address. Or maybe it’s simply more convenient to just use one email address for everything (Hillary Clinton did). The reason could be both.

Serious Business Professionals Use Gmail and Hotmail


Plenty of Marketing Directors, CEO’s and Presidents at small to midsize company’s <50 employees in size, use gmail or hotmail addresses to pre-screen junk mail.

Keep Sending to Leads Regardless of their Email

If you have a lot of non-business addresses subscribed to your newsletter, don’t be discouraged. Your lead’s opening your emails trying to decide if your content has any value to them. So keep sending your content to convince subscribers that your emails are valuable and worth reading.

It doesn’t matter whether your leads are on the market for your services or not. The important thing is that you’re on their radar. You’re that helpful person who’s been sending them all this helpful content. And someday, down the down road, when they’re looking for your services, there you are in their inbox.

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