As marketing departments become more governed and led by an increasing array of performance metrics, user statistics, and engagement figures, brands need clear and immediate return on investment to justify this outlay.
Some recent findings into the use and management of customer data shows that UK organisations estimate poor quality customer data is costing them an average of 6% of their annual revenues. That’s an alarming and preventable loss however you present the numbers. A perception that resolving data quality issues is a one-time fix – as opposed to being a constant challenge is partially to blame.
Very few marketers would disagree that data quality has the highest impact on campaign response and conversion rates, yet conversely nearly all those firms canvassed (91.4%) say they are still plagued with data-quality issues. The disconnect is evident and clearly points to a lack of knowledge or an underlying concern of data-cleansing, both of which are needless barriers to growth.
The inherent trust in metrics and numbers at the end of a campaign seem to be a contradiction to a lack of faith in the numbers at the beginning, it seems to make no sense. So what’s going on?
With the impending EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and general re-permissioning requirements becoming statute in May 2018, and an alarming 58% of marketing professionals report having concerns over the compliance of their in-house customer data.
Many brands have been avoiding are less reliant on using 3rd-party data because they don’t have the sufficient trust that it will comply with the new, tougher data-permissioning standards. These new guidelines mean that unless organisations act now to improve their data quality, they will face a shortfall in usable, permissioned customer information. With such a shuttered view of the state of their data, it’s clear that marketers must make big changes to improve customer data quality and get ready for new landscape.
Compliant data agencies like TDP Marketing, have become advisors and consultants over the last few years and our role has changed with market demand and legislation. We speak to hundreds of brands every week who want guidance and advice on the existing data sets that companies already hold, advice on how they leverage growth, cleansing and management of marketing in-house lists. Obviously customer profile matching is a huge part of our operations and a real growth area too.
Digital marketing still leads the field in data capture, with website captured data and mobile web offering daily influxes of new customer information. This obviously is the preferred inbound method of customer attraction, but it’s tricky en-mass, and expensive if using paid search channels.
Transactional data collection is also on the up in terms of volume, whether the user has opted for speed checkout and sharing permissions are obvious and transparent, consumers mind less as they know the accounts given are less precious or less prized than a prime email address. Two-thirds of marketers capture data from direct sales, up from just over half (55%) last year. Both sources provide data that either comes with first-party consent (direct sales) or can be leveraged to gain it (from websites).
With so many active data sources, responsibility for data management is often shared across multiple functions without consistent data collection processes. While marketing leads in setting data strategy and collection for most companies, CRM functions, customer service, sales and e-commerce often collect customer data as well.
Data’s evolved, it’s not just for marketing department’s, not the preserve of IT manager’s, it’s a whole company responsibility and improving customer data quality starts at the top of an organisation. Data fuels growth, provides the numbers, guarantees income and return, it provides stability and is the new premium and with the hard fact being that only 65% of organisations cleanse their customer data once a year, or have no processes in place at all – promotes our cause for better data management and closer attention to the numbers.