I know…..”It’s only October, so why is Christmas the topic of this week’s blog” I hear you shout!
Simple….. how many of you are going to be sending cards to your customer database?
Probably quite a few of you I’d imagine – well you want to make sure they receive them don’t you!!??!!
Many of you will have a business database of customers and prospects and, no doubt, will be thinking you’re content that the data quality is accurate. However, you’d be surprised at just how quickly data quality deteriorates, particularly over the course of a year. People move positions or companies, companies expand or move, email addresses and telephone numbers change. It really is important that you keep an up to date customer database, not just for Christmas but throughout the year.
Now there are some common mis-conceptions attached to using data cleansing services and I’ve heard many reasons why people choose not to cleanse their data. The most common reasons I hear are that it’s expensive, or it’s a waste of time. However, I think you’d actually be surprised at the costs and as for its being a waste of time, well I beg to differ. As I see it, there are far more reasons to cleanse your data than not, unless of course:
- You like receiving lots of bounce back emails (as does your ISP)
- You like receiving undelivered mail
- Your clients like to receive 3 or 4 copies of your marketing material every time you send it
- Your clients like to receive mail sent to them with their name or addresses mis-spelt
- Your clients like to receive calls from upset relatives advising you of a death in the family
- Your clients like to receive irrelevant mail
- Your employees enjoy the frustration of not getting through on the phone
- Your employees enjoy calling the wrong person / company
Now you may be thinking “so what if a few records are wrong”. Well, the thing is, it’s not just the cost of a phone call you’ve wasted, it’s the time as well. It might even be the cost of a leaflet or brochure, if it’s a direct mailing campaign you’ve undertaken, plus the postage costs – it soon adds up!
PLUS, how many of you continue to use your mailing list over and over again – if you’re not refreshing your business database, the data quality will continue to suffer and you’ll end up throwing more and more money away! I haven’t even mentioned the distress you could be causing to the recipient, or the potential for adverse PR that could damage your company’s reputation (not to mention the time taken in resolving the situation).
OK, so right now you’re thinking “how much is this going to cost me”, right? Well, the costs attached to undertaking a data cleansing exercise needn’t be restrictive at all, particularly when you balance that cost against the cost of wasted time and money associated with using old data. Think how much it costs per card, plus stamp, plus time filling the envelopes – it’s simply cash lost for every one returned undelivered!
Here at Data Bubble Consultancy Limited, we offer a FREE, NO OBLIGATION DATABASE CLEANSING AUDIT. In short, if you send us your business database or customer database, we’ll run it through our computers and it’ll tell us exactly how many records are out of date. We can then advise you how many records need updating and at what cost, before you actually proceed with the project. It’s really that simple, so for no cost, why would you not?
For those of you who want the hassle taken completely out of this annual task, why not outsource it? We regularly work with close, trusted companies who undertake direct mail fulfillment projects for us and our clients. As our name’s associated, we only use or recommend companies we know can deliver on time, companies with the highest recommendations.