Who will ever forget Python skits frequently being interrupted by the Sergeant Major, played by Graham Chapman, striding in and announcing “Stop the sketch! It’s too silly!”
I’m here to announce, “Stop the Marketing! It’s too silly!” Actually, I’m sure your marketing is very sensible and well thought out. Unfortunately, it’s the marketing data that’s likely to be a bit silly…
These days, we rely heavily on our data to fuel our spam cannons. Oops, sorry - CRMs and Marketing Automation platforms. It was not always thus…
You lot are lucky. When I were a lad we didn’t even have a computer, let alone CRM. Our Sales Manager used to come back from the pub, flog us all and send us out on our bicycles to call on Prospect and lick his boots until he gave us orders. After 5 years you might get promoted and given a pair of cycle clips. Those were the days….
Whilst we don’t want to be reverting to bicycles and door knocking (hang on, that might actually just work…), we do want to make sure we are electronically licking the right prospect’s boots with the right messages.
Very silly data can wreck all of that carefully thought out targeting and have the prospect keeping his Inbox and mind firmly shut to you as you are viewed, basically, as a purveyor of irrelevant things.
But, MY marketing data is fine as I have an application that is business rule driven and ensures that I have top-class integrity at all times, I hear you cry. Well, yes, in part, but crucially it rarely caters for ensuring that the users have made sensible choices. The data entered may have come off of a pick-list and, by default, conform to a valid value but it may not make any sense, in the context of the what the data represents.
As an example, consider the maker of a mobile phone. What industry do they reside in? The common answer is “Telecommunications”. Wrong! Sure, their industry of interest is Telecommunications but they are, in fact, a Manufacturer of Consumer Electronics. Were you to be selling a Complex Manufacturing software solution and targeting Manufacturers of Consumer Electronics, you may just miss that vital company that got wrongly classified under “Telecomms”. Aha, I hear you smugly say, that’s why we included Telecomms in our targeting, just in case that happened. So, you think Telstra is interested in your Complex Manufacturing solution… Did I just hear the click of an Unsubscribe button? It's going to take a fair bit of boot licking to get them back, when you really do need to target them. All they need to do is to not pick up the phone… You may even have to get on yer bike and knock on the door!
What can be done about this? The best approach is to audit your data out of the context of the application. But we have 200,000 marketing records, we couldn’t possibly check every one!
You are right, life is a little too short to be line checking every record. You could give it to the low-cost Elbonians to do, but they don’t actually have computers or know where Maroubra is.
Rather than do it yourself, consider giving the project to a local organisation who has the right experience and tools to be able to quickly solve the problem. If you ask me nicely, I may even be able to point you in the right direction.
About the Author
Andy Kyiet Managing Director, APAC Demand Flow Intelligence. He is known in the industry as “The Orang-utan Whisperer”, I help my clients to find their particular Orang-utans at the lowest possible cost. Prior to launching Demand Flow Intelligence in 2001, my background was running ventures that provided high-value technology solutions. My key frustration was a lack of affordable market intelligence that would enable me to do smarter marketing.