Getting the Cart and the Horse in the Right Order: Putting Resources and Priority to Your Data Health

Cart and Horse

By Ellen Valentine, Silverpop

Since the beginning of time, marketers have been super concerned about the way their marketing looks. Whether it’s a print advertisement in an old Sears Catalog, an ad in Fortune Magazine, an online banner ad placed in syndicated websites or an email sent to a house list, everyone continues to be hyper-focused on layout, colors and content. Teams of creative individuals work to develop, debate and decide the best visual approach. But quite honestly, all these efforts are putting the cart before the horse.

First, or at least simultaneously, marketing organizations have got to invest serious time and resources to evaluating and improving their data. In their first B2B Marketing Data Benchmark Report, NetProspex presents some startling statistics:

  • 48 million people changed jobs in 2011
  • 25% of data quality problems are caused by customer data entry errors
  • 71% of business IT buyers refuse to provide their company email address when completing registration forms

If you apply these metrics to your business, I guarantee that your master marketing database needs some attention. In order to take positive action, you’ll first need to assess where you stand. The Netprospex Data Health Scale will give you a complete, yet easy-to-understand way of assessing where your organization stands in a number of key areas including record duplication, record completeness, email deliverability and phone connectivity.

Once you know how you stack up, you can put a plan in place to address when you need to make improvements, how you’ll make them and who can oversee the projects. If you develop a segmented plan, implementing your highest-priority action-items first, you won’t feel like you have to get every record perfect before you begin.

In fact, if you’re diligent and comprehensive in your approach, you might even be able to achieve results consistent with the 7x the number of inquiries and 4x the number of leads that other data hygiene advocates have garnered in their high-priority marketing campaigns. And yes, snazzy creative and high-quality offers are important, but they can only achieve breakthrough success when sitting on a foundation of quality data.

Ellen is an Evangelist with Silverpop. Silverpop is the only digital marketing technology provider that unifies marketing automation, email, mobile and social. Ellen Valentine has more than 20 years of experience as vice president of marketing/CMO for a number of technology companies. In her role at Silverpop, she’s focused on coaching and mentoring Silverpop clients to adapt and thrive in marketing’s changing role.

Photo from Pocheco on Flickr