Why Terrible Data Makes Terrible Communications (and What to Do About It)

BAD_DATA_Traci0Customer and prospect data can be a scary beast. Especially for large organizations, or those with many separate and inconsistent data sources. It’s still spring, so let’s talk about cleaning house.

We all know that most customers expect personal attention. And we all roll our eyes at mass emailers and cold callers that give the same spiel to everyone they talk to (note: maybe by posting this, said cold callers will give me a customized and tailored experience where they don’t call me at all). But providing truly personalized and valuable communications to your customers and prospects requires a solid, detailed foundation in data, which is rarely easy to attain.

Steve Olenski of Oracle recommends starting with a “Reality Check” involving a thorough data audit and self-assessment. Look closely at your existing data sources—do they connect to each other? Do they capture information in a consistent way? Is the data accurate and clean?

I’d bet $5 that your sources include some of the following:

  • CRM system/field capture
  • Events (attendance, booth visits, demos)
  • Direct marketing (email, direct mail)
  • Social media
  • Outbound telemarketing (conversation details such as date, topic, outcome/disposition)
  • Website and forms
  • Mobile app
  • Operational info (accounts, contracts)
  • Opt-out process

Post-evaluation, the fun begins. A clear sense of what your current sources are and what the quality of your existing data is should help to inform a strategic plan for improvement. This should be completely customized to your organization and your goals, but here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Consolidate/integrate your data sources
    • Look for opportunities to make connections (i.e., can your CRM system feed data directly into your email/marketing automation platform?)
    • Ideally if a change is made in one place (i.e., a customer provides an updated email address through a form) it is automatically fed to your central data repository so you don’t end up with different versions of data in different places
    • A central repository can help to provide a full view of each person in one place
  • Be thoughtful about fields (which ones you have, which ones are required)
    • Consider what you need and want in terms of types of data in order to create truly tailored communications AND to accurately qualify prospects
    • You’ve probably heard of the BANT sales opportunity qualification model which has been around for a few years—it’s based on budget, authority, need, and timeline. If these are your key qualifiers, for example, make sure you have a way to capture and track these pieces of data so you can prioritize your efforts.
    • For marketing messages that feel personal, you may want to maintain a clean first name, industry, title/department, competitive product/services details (like contract expiration), type of opportunity, customer vs. prospect … I could go on. The point is to be thoughtful about what information you gather so your messages are appropriately versioned and inspire action or behavior change from your audience.
  • Commit to periodic cleansing
    • Let’s not fall back into a rut after our initial audit—make this auditing and cleansing an ongoing initiative
  • Provide field training
    • One of the biggest potential obstacles to capturing and maintaining sound data starts in the field, when sales teams are entering prospect and customer data into a CRM system. They are busy, on-the-go, and may not realize how this data is going to be used beyond their personal tracking process.
    • Provide training on data capture, best practices, and why it matters to the organization
    • Share this mortifying example of bad data leading to bad (and newsworthy) communications to help drive the point home
  • Use lead scoring and event/action tracking
    • As a self-proclaimed marketing tech nerd I love how tools and platforms are constantly evolving and allowing you to target based on much more than demographic info. Track the actions and behaviors of your customers and prospects. Look at individual actions plus combinations and quantity over time.
    • Look at quantitative + qualitative information and assess areas of interest, pain points, etc. that apply to each person in order to deliver the most relevant content

And did someone say predictive analytics?! Oh, that was me. If you have solid data and related processes in place, you can do some very cool (and impactful) things. So let’s rise above NAMES IN ALL CAPS and missing email addresses. Spend some time and resources on your data now, and see the payoff in the long run with personalized campaigns that inspire behavior change.

How can we help you make change?

There are no comments yet. Be the first and leave a response!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Why Terrible Data Makes Terrible Communications (and What to Do About It)

BAD_DATA_Traci0Customer and prospect data can be a scary beast. Especially for large organizations, or those with many separate and inconsistent data sources. It’s still spring, so let’s talk about cleaning house.

We all know that most customers expect personal attention. And we all roll our eyes at mass emailers and cold callers that give the same spiel to everyone they talk to (note: maybe by posting this, said cold callers will give me a customized and tailored experience where they don’t call me at all). But providing truly personalized and valuable communications to your customers and prospects requires a solid, detailed foundation in data, which is rarely easy to attain.

Steve Olenski of Oracle recommends starting with a “Reality Check” involving a thorough data audit and self-assessment. Look closely at your existing data sources—do they connect to each other? Do they capture information in a consistent way? Is the data accurate and clean?

I’d bet $5 that your sources include some of the following:

  • CRM system/field capture
  • Events (attendance, booth visits, demos)
  • Direct marketing (email, direct mail)
  • Social media
  • Outbound telemarketing (conversation details such as date, topic, outcome/disposition)
  • Website and forms
  • Mobile app
  • Operational info (accounts, contracts)
  • Opt-out process

Post-evaluation, the fun begins. A clear sense of what your current sources are and what the quality of your existing data is should help to inform a strategic plan for improvement. This should be completely customized to your organization and your goals, but here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Consolidate/integrate your data sources
    • Look for opportunities to make connections (i.e., can your CRM system feed data directly into your email/marketing automation platform?)
    • Ideally if a change is made in one place (i.e., a customer provides an updated email address through a form) it is automatically fed to your central data repository so you don’t end up with different versions of data in different places
    • A central repository can help to provide a full view of each person in one place
  • Be thoughtful about fields (which ones you have, which ones are required)
    • Consider what you need and want in terms of types of data in order to create truly tailored communications AND to accurately qualify prospects
    • You’ve probably heard of the BANT sales opportunity qualification model which has been around for a few years—it’s based on budget, authority, need, and timeline. If these are your key qualifiers, for example, make sure you have a way to capture and track these pieces of data so you can prioritize your efforts.
    • For marketing messages that feel personal, you may want to maintain a clean first name, industry, title/department, competitive product/services details (like contract expiration), type of opportunity, customer vs. prospect … I could go on. The point is to be thoughtful about what information you gather so your messages are appropriately versioned and inspire action or behavior change from your audience.
  • Commit to periodic cleansing
    • Let’s not fall back into a rut after our initial audit—make this auditing and cleansing an ongoing initiative
  • Provide field training
    • One of the biggest potential obstacles to capturing and maintaining sound data starts in the field, when sales teams are entering prospect and customer data into a CRM system. They are busy, on-the-go, and may not realize how this data is going to be used beyond their personal tracking process.
    • Provide training on data capture, best practices, and why it matters to the organization
    • Share this mortifying example of bad data leading to bad (and newsworthy) communications to help drive the point home
  • Use lead scoring and event/action tracking
    • As a self-proclaimed marketing tech nerd I love how tools and platforms are constantly evolving and allowing you to target based on much more than demographic info. Track the actions and behaviors of your customers and prospects. Look at individual actions plus combinations and quantity over time.
    • Look at quantitative + qualitative information and assess areas of interest, pain points, etc. that apply to each person in order to deliver the most relevant content

And did someone say predictive analytics?! Oh, that was me. If you have solid data and related processes in place, you can do some very cool (and impactful) things. So let’s rise above NAMES IN ALL CAPS and missing email addresses. Spend some time and resources on your data now, and see the payoff in the long run with personalized campaigns that inspire behavior change.

How can we help you make change?

There are no comments yet. Be the first and leave a response!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Why Terrible Data Makes Terrible Communications (and What to Do About It)

BAD_DATA_Traci0Customer and prospect data can be a scary beast. Especially for large organizations, or those with many separate and inconsistent data sources. It’s still spring, so let’s talk about cleaning house.

We all know that most customers expect personal attention. And we all roll our eyes at mass emailers and cold callers that give the same spiel to everyone they talk to (note: maybe by posting this, said cold callers will give me a customized and tailored experience where they don’t call me at all). But providing truly personalized and valuable communications to your customers and prospects requires a solid, detailed foundation in data, which is rarely easy to attain.

Steve Olenski of Oracle recommends starting with a “Reality Check” involving a thorough data audit and self-assessment. Look closely at your existing data sources—do they connect to each other? Do they capture information in a consistent way? Is the data accurate and clean?

I’d bet $5 that your sources include some of the following:

  • CRM system/field capture
  • Events (attendance, booth visits, demos)
  • Direct marketing (email, direct mail)
  • Social media
  • Outbound telemarketing (conversation details such as date, topic, outcome/disposition)
  • Website and forms
  • Mobile app
  • Operational info (accounts, contracts)
  • Opt-out process

Post-evaluation, the fun begins. A clear sense of what your current sources are and what the quality of your existing data is should help to inform a strategic plan for improvement. This should be completely customized to your organization and your goals, but here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Consolidate/integrate your data sources
    • Look for opportunities to make connections (i.e., can your CRM system feed data directly into your email/marketing automation platform?)
    • Ideally if a change is made in one place (i.e., a customer provides an updated email address through a form) it is automatically fed to your central data repository so you don’t end up with different versions of data in different places
    • A central repository can help to provide a full view of each person in one place
  • Be thoughtful about fields (which ones you have, which ones are required)
    • Consider what you need and want in terms of types of data in order to create truly tailored communications AND to accurately qualify prospects
    • You’ve probably heard of the BANT sales opportunity qualification model which has been around for a few years—it’s based on budget, authority, need, and timeline. If these are your key qualifiers, for example, make sure you have a way to capture and track these pieces of data so you can prioritize your efforts.
    • For marketing messages that feel personal, you may want to maintain a clean first name, industry, title/department, competitive product/services details (like contract expiration), type of opportunity, customer vs. prospect … I could go on. The point is to be thoughtful about what information you gather so your messages are appropriately versioned and inspire action or behavior change from your audience.
  • Commit to periodic cleansing
    • Let’s not fall back into a rut after our initial audit—make this auditing and cleansing an ongoing initiative
  • Provide field training
    • One of the biggest potential obstacles to capturing and maintaining sound data starts in the field, when sales teams are entering prospect and customer data into a CRM system. They are busy, on-the-go, and may not realize how this data is going to be used beyond their personal tracking process.
    • Provide training on data capture, best practices, and why it matters to the organization
    • Share this mortifying example of bad data leading to bad (and newsworthy) communications to help drive the point home
  • Use lead scoring and event/action tracking
    • As a self-proclaimed marketing tech nerd I love how tools and platforms are constantly evolving and allowing you to target based on much more than demographic info. Track the actions and behaviors of your customers and prospects. Look at individual actions plus combinations and quantity over time.
    • Look at quantitative + qualitative information and assess areas of interest, pain points, etc. that apply to each person in order to deliver the most relevant content

And did someone say predictive analytics?! Oh, that was me. If you have solid data and related processes in place, you can do some very cool (and impactful) things. So let’s rise above NAMES IN ALL CAPS and missing email addresses. Spend some time and resources on your data now, and see the payoff in the long run with personalized campaigns that inspire behavior change.

How can we help you make change?

There are no comments yet. Be the first and leave a response!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Why Terrible Data Makes Terrible Communications (and What to Do About It)

BAD_DATA_Traci0Customer and prospect data can be a scary beast. Especially for large organizations, or those with many separate and inconsistent data sources. It’s still spring, so let’s talk about cleaning house.

We all know that most customers expect personal attention. And we all roll our eyes at mass emailers and cold callers that give the same spiel to everyone they talk to (note: maybe by posting this, said cold callers will give me a customized and tailored experience where they don’t call me at all). But providing truly personalized and valuable communications to your customers and prospects requires a solid, detailed foundation in data, which is rarely easy to attain.

Steve Olenski of Oracle recommends starting with a “Reality Check” involving a thorough data audit and self-assessment. Look closely at your existing data sources—do they connect to each other? Do they capture information in a consistent way? Is the data accurate and clean?

I’d bet $5 that your sources include some of the following:

  • CRM system/field capture
  • Events (attendance, booth visits, demos)
  • Direct marketing (email, direct mail)
  • Social media
  • Outbound telemarketing (conversation details such as date, topic, outcome/disposition)
  • Website and forms
  • Mobile app
  • Operational info (accounts, contracts)
  • Opt-out process

Post-evaluation, the fun begins. A clear sense of what your current sources are and what the quality of your existing data is should help to inform a strategic plan for improvement. This should be completely customized to your organization and your goals, but here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Consolidate/integrate your data sources
    • Look for opportunities to make connections (i.e., can your CRM system feed data directly into your email/marketing automation platform?)
    • Ideally if a change is made in one place (i.e., a customer provides an updated email address through a form) it is automatically fed to your central data repository so you don’t end up with different versions of data in different places
    • A central repository can help to provide a full view of each person in one place
  • Be thoughtful about fields (which ones you have, which ones are required)
    • Consider what you need and want in terms of types of data in order to create truly tailored communications AND to accurately qualify prospects
    • You’ve probably heard of the BANT sales opportunity qualification model which has been around for a few years—it’s based on budget, authority, need, and timeline. If these are your key qualifiers, for example, make sure you have a way to capture and track these pieces of data so you can prioritize your efforts.
    • For marketing messages that feel personal, you may want to maintain a clean first name, industry, title/department, competitive product/services details (like contract expiration), type of opportunity, customer vs. prospect … I could go on. The point is to be thoughtful about what information you gather so your messages are appropriately versioned and inspire action or behavior change from your audience.
  • Commit to periodic cleansing
    • Let’s not fall back into a rut after our initial audit—make this auditing and cleansing an ongoing initiative
  • Provide field training
    • One of the biggest potential obstacles to capturing and maintaining sound data starts in the field, when sales teams are entering prospect and customer data into a CRM system. They are busy, on-the-go, and may not realize how this data is going to be used beyond their personal tracking process.
    • Provide training on data capture, best practices, and why it matters to the organization
    • Share this mortifying example of bad data leading to bad (and newsworthy) communications to help drive the point home
  • Use lead scoring and event/action tracking
    • As a self-proclaimed marketing tech nerd I love how tools and platforms are constantly evolving and allowing you to target based on much more than demographic info. Track the actions and behaviors of your customers and prospects. Look at individual actions plus combinations and quantity over time.
    • Look at quantitative + qualitative information and assess areas of interest, pain points, etc. that apply to each person in order to deliver the most relevant content

And did someone say predictive analytics?! Oh, that was me. If you have solid data and related processes in place, you can do some very cool (and impactful) things. So let’s rise above NAMES IN ALL CAPS and missing email addresses. Spend some time and resources on your data now, and see the payoff in the long run with personalized campaigns that inspire behavior change.

How can we help you make change?

There are no comments yet. Be the first and leave a response!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *