Clean Customer Data and How to Use It

You’ve probably read about the huge role data plays in developing customer relationships. Much has been written about big data and unlocking information confined to organizational silos. Getting a handle on all that information is an important step towards improving the customer experience.

Regardless of your progress towards building a comprehensive customer database, the accuracy of that data is essential to achieving your customer communication goals. Errors in customer data can make documents and messages useless and expensive. In the early days of computing, programmers had a favorite term, “garbage in, garbage out” (GIGO). The adage is still true today.

Expanded use of data requires more accuracy

Personalized documents and messaging have come a long way from the days when we impressed customers by inserting their names into computer form letters. Document designers are taking advantage of available data to target offers, generate images consistent with customer demographic profiles, decide which communication channels to deliver the messages, and more.

Location, location, location

Geolocation is a good example of advanced data use. Customer address data spawns custom maps or driving directions to retail locations or events. Even more valuable, smart marketers are using geographic information to filter customers whose driving time or distance exceeds the longest commute most consumers will endure to visit their establishments. They save money by trimming unlikely prospects from their mailings.

Varying the value of coupons based on location can also be effective. You might print lower value coupons for customers living just down the street from the store, but entice distant prospects with something more compelling. Or you might encourage outlying customers to try online ordering or a delivery service instead of doing their shopping in person.

Since you bought that, try this…

Even basic customer information about past purchases can drive offers for add-on products and services. Contacting customers when a previously-purchased item is nearing the end of its lifespan or has become obsolete are great examples of just-in-time marketing. The software and hardware used by print service providers like Earthcolor make this highly personal approach possible. Access to accurate data is the key.

Digitally printing magazines or catalogs allows editors to choose articles, merchandise, and ads aligned with known information about customer interests. You are probably familiar with online ads promoting products based on individual browsing history. We can do the same with print. Sophisticated composition software creates custom pieces and saves money spent producing pages customers will ignore. Why send catalogs filled with products exclusively for above-ground pools to homeowners whose swimming pools are in-ground? Maximize the value of that space to promote relevant products instead!

Using data you already have to create more impactful customer communications is no more difficult than churning out another mass mailing, yet the results can be outstanding. Contact us today to learn more about how to put your valuable customer information to best use.

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