With the start of a new year comes the chance to review practices and strategies from the last 12 months, such as list building and data management. Over the past year, your lists may have become so clogged with inaccurate data and duplicate information that it can be hard for your sales and lead generation teams to know where to start.
To clean up your lists and commit to better quality, more effective data management in 2015, here are some useful tips to help you get started:
1. Understand your audience. For your lists to work for you, and result in effective lead generation, you need to establish your target market and understand their challenges.
2. Be targeted. When you outsource data procurement these days, you can demand ever more specific criteria. This enables you to really pinpoint your target audience, so that you can build lists that are more likely to lead to meaningful contact and profitable results.
3. Regularly cleanse and refresh your data. Are your marketing emails bouncing, or have previous contacts within companies moved on to pastures new? If so, you need to invest in data cleansing to keep your information up to date. This involves removing inaccurate data and old contacts, and along with data appending, ensuring that all you are left with is relevant information that is useful to your sales and marketing team.
4. Standardise your data. To make the best use of your data, ensure that it is organised in a standardised format. Decide what the best way to format your data and set this as the company-wide standard for list building.
5. Establish a methodology. If you want lists that are clean, accurate and complete, you’ll need to establish a sound method in order to collect it. This methodology will need to stretch across all list building and lead generation activities in your company. Alternatively, when it comes to list building, many firms find it much more convenient and cost-effective to outsource the work to a specialist agency such as IT Focus, which already has an established and effective methodology in place.
6. Only buy what you need. It might seem to make sense to procure more data than you need right now, for use in the future. However, rather than being good value, buying data on such a large scale can actually be a false economy. The likelihood is that you’ll never have the resources to get through all of this data, so it will only decay. So, to avoid wasting your money and to make the best use of resources, buy only what you need, when you need it.
7. Remember – data quality is far more important than quantity. In order to generate qualified leads, your data needs to be accurate, up-to-date and complete. This quality is worth far more than gathering pages and pages of irrelevant data and contacts.