How much money do you waste on inaccurate customer data? 3 Tips to get your data right
Poor data can result in irrelevant and outdated communications which can damage your brand for example:
- Offering a loyal customer upgrade to a customer who has already terminated their business with you
- Sending sensitive email attachments addressed to a customer who’s email address has been recycled
- Threatening the wrong customer with legal action for non-payment.
To avoid this, you should implement a data strategy to ensure your customer records are kept up-to-date. Here are 3 tips to get your data right:
1. Data has great value, so make data cleanliness a priority
When data does receive the spotlight, it’s usually through a top down or bottom up approach. The directive is either issued by someone senior who cites the problems of increased call time in call centres, large undelivered mail statistics or complaints from customers who do not wish to be contacted, etc.
The bottom up approach is usually an analysis of your existing data e.g. if 25% of your email addresses on record are invalid, how does this affect your ability to up sell products to your customer base? And how does this work against the return on marketing investment?
2. A good start is to attack the low hanging fruit
Your existing customer base is the most logical place to start. No matter the type of communication you’re sending , updated data is key. Scrub your database regularly for accuracy and centralize it to prevent disparate customer information from being used and sending the customer a mixed message (if the message is delivered at all).
3. Data ages, so keep at it
An initial clean is a great start, but databases have to be maintained. Create a data hygiene policy that looks at maintaining a quality customer database. Use strategies like
- De-duping: Removing duplicate records is an immediate cost saver
- Data Enrichment: Launch your own internal campaigns or use 3rd party companies to assist you in gathering additional data about your customers; such as email addresses and contact numbers. Also use companies who can assist you to hold additional information about your customers that you may be technically unable to accommodate such as communication tables detailing how and when you communicated with your customer over a period of time.
- Data cleansing: Identify and remove inaccurate information from your database. There are several tools available to do this, depending on the type of customer information. Specialist companies are also able to provide you with an indication of inaccurate records e.g. email, physical and postal addresses.
How much money do you waste on inaccurate customer data? Remember that the success and relevancy of all communications hinges on the accuracy of your database.
Do you have a strategy to ensure your customer records are kept up-to-date?
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