Customer Relationship Management or CRM is a technology to store all the contact and prospect data for a business. But more often than not, it is often messy and in bad shape. Leave alone driving prospect conversions and customer satisfaction; it can’t help your sales team to drive an outreach email marketing campaign efficiently. 

 

Why should businesses drive data quality?

 

Data integrity and quality is a must because bad data can do more harm than good. It has a direct impact on B2B lead generation, conversion rate and eventually, return on investment. Many companies believe that thirty-two per cent of their data is incomplete and inaccurate and owing to which twenty-two per cent of their revenue prospects are hurt.

 

Clean CRM data implies better sales prospecting, improved forecasting and increased lead conversion. Since clean data suggests a better-targeted approach, it helps in identifying qualified leads, reducing time and efforts spent in reaching out to them. 

 

This ‘Clean up your CRM database for marketing automation’ guide will navigate you through to

  • Clean up CRM database with data appending and scrubbing 
  • Automate the process
  • Enhance qualified leads and lead intelligence
  • Improve the efficacy of marketing campaigns

 

What is CRM?

 

crm automation

 

CRM is a technology that enables a holistic 360-degree view of your connections with present and targeted customers. It is an approach to simplify as well as enhance business relationships through a single hub-point dashboard. A salesperson can interact with a customer, and identify the leads or prospects of a conversation. It also lets business owners drop by and ‘listen in on’ the social media platforms. The data is available at one place for marketing, sales and customer support. The customer support teams can take up a query raised by customers across different verticals and see the progress made on it.  Besides, a lot of data is generated during interactions and campaigns by a business, and CRM is the logical way to manage it. 

 

CRM Database Cleaning

 

crm database cleaning

 

Marketing automation software has contacts, fields, smart workflows and lists to drive campaigns. The salespeople often collect this data in different tradeshows, exhibitions and work conferences. Sometimes, the information is digital footprints collected via website forms, landing pages and paid promotions on social media.   Bad data has various points of inception. It could be customers filling irrelevant details, a salesman doing a typo while entering the information, teams not following the format or customers moving their base. 

 

Irrespective of the root cause of bad data – unresponsive, uninterested and unengaged customer data needs to be eliminated from the system. However, weeding out the unsubscribers, deleting the opt-outs and tracking the bounce-offs need different data appending solutions. A standard terminology should be followed if you want to keep your campaigns sorted and streamlined. 

 

A spic and span CRM database is inherent to marketing automation to protect sender reputation and sender score. A sender score is a number given to your IP address by spam filters. It needs to be maintained and should be high to let an email land in an inbox and the spam folder. Usually, when a business takes the help of a third-party database or avoids email verification services, it creates a doorway for duplicated, incomplete and inaccurate information to enter into the system, especially when the database has been in existence for a few years and never been updated. 

 

Why do you need CRM data cleaning?

 

crm data cleaning

 

The stepping stone of a robust CRM is its data. Hence, when you prepare your CRM for marketing automation, email data validation and CRM cleaning is the first checkbox to tick.  

 

  • It impacts your business.  More than forty per cent companies have admitted dealing with messy data that has impacted several verticals and functions including BI, marketing and customer support. Choosing the correct data can make or break a business, and this is why CRM cleaning should be a top priority for any business. Email appending is the first step of CRM database cleanup and a significant one, considering that seventy-one per cent of customers prefer email marketing over directly hearing from a salesperson about a product.

 

  • It is cost-effective. The 1-10-100 rule states that it takes $1 for proactively engaging the data verification and CRM data cleaning services and stopping the data from getting corrupted beforehand. A $10 to avail it afterwards and clean it when the data has entered the system and $100 is basically ‘a dollar short and a day late’.

 

  • It reduces the end costs. When an email database is verified and updated with current information, the sales and marketing teams can reduce their overhead costs of running a campaign and reach out to their customers effectively. It also saves ample working hours that salespeople otherwise spend digging up relevant and current information.

 

  • It enhances the ROI Since your campaign is now implementing a targeted approach and is reaching out to the interested customers, your teams generate more leads and ring the cash register!

 

  • Sender Reputation. Email appending for CRM implies updated, correct, complete and verified email IDs, which result in compliance with anti-spam and CAN-SPAM regulations across the world.

 

  • Improved Customer Satisfaction. Targeted communication with a targeted group increases the success rate of a marketing campaign and leads to wholesome customer experience.

 

How to get CRM cleaned up?

 

crm cleansing

 

CRM isn’t meant for customer relationship management alone. It is a platform that gives you insights and brings information about the entire journey of a customer with a business. When a CRM is integrated with a marketing automation software, the enrich data becomes a valuable entity across all verticals and for all teams. The incorrect data in CRM is a loss for everyone involved with the business. Be it sales, marketing or customer service; a disorganised CRM can wreak havoc for all.

 

Several tools can be used to clean your database. These tools can be accessed online and are available for ‘Free’ or at some cost. However, these means are often restrictive and may not offer critical analysis, insights and data enhancement. Some data appending tools have been proved useful but are worth a fortune- not exactly a wise choice for SMEs and startups. If your area of expertise is a niche segment or require a working knowledge of your domain or to handle large data sets, then automated tools won’t be able to provide you full-spectrum services. 

 

Hire someone (a data solutions company) for CRM cleaning

 

If you want to keep your CRM database clean as a whistle, it is time to hire a data appending company. Their email verification service may include updating the contact list and adding relevant details to drive a campaign effectively while implementing processes to keep the incoming stream of data clean.

 

The CRM data management offered by a provider is a mix of manual and automation services. The leads and contact list is specific to your business. Data augmentation is also a direct reflection of your business and is done keeping your business objectives in mind. 

 

Best CRM Cleaning Practices

 

crm cleaning practise

 

Be it an email marketing campaign or robust customer support, every business vertical and function require data to back on. If your CRM data is messy, it can lead to inaccurate insights, failed business decisions and oversights. And this is not it. Be it your on-ground salespeople, marketing team or admin- the flak of lousy data is felt by everyone involved in the business. 

 

A proactive approach towards data scrubbing can lead to crystal clear marketing strategies and sales tactics. Businesses are data-driven, and the data they rely on must be state-of-the-art.  If you are looking to maximise your ROI and improve the quality of leads, the following are the best CRM cleansing practices that businesses can embrace and adopt Read on! 

 

Scrutinise within

 

Bad data always manages to slip through the cracks. As a decision-maker, you must find the loopholes in the system and seal them tight. Is it your salespeople who are making typos while entering the data into the system? Or is it your customers that aren’t ready to give you the accurate details yet? Or is it the marketing team that isn’t following the format. Messy and bad data is an eventuality, but there are ways to delay its onset, which can happen via proper training and supervision. The work staff dealing with CRM data should be trained to have a keen eye for any discrepancies. 

 

Maintenance schedules

 

Maintaining clean CRM is an ongoing task. It is time-consuming, requires constant check and maintenance schedule. A maintenance schedule includes a monthly or quarterly review of stored data and red-flagging the entry points where most mistakes are taking place. The maintenance schedules also involve cleaning up the records, checking the missing and incomplete data and setting up automated reminders for task assignments. A business owner should work towards setting up a process to inventory data in the CRM system to make it an asset, not a liability. 

 

Checkpoints

 

Maintaining a CRM isn’t a single team’s responsibility. It is a joint effort. Every team member has to understand that the CRM data helps to understand customers, predict the market and enables effective communication. There should be several checkpoints, and it should be everyone’s duty involved with CRM to flag errors, invalid formatting and incomplete entries. There should be several training sessions by the consulting partners to guide through CRM cleanup and email appending process. 

 

Protecting your data can be the best-preventing strategy to delay the onset of data decaying. Once there is constant vigil practice set in motion, half of the battle is won.

 

Improve and Enhance your Data

 

Almost seventy per cent of businesses consider their CRM data as growth-enabler. Still, on the other hand, an astonishing ninety-four per cent have reasons to believe that their CRM data is incomplete and inaccurate, rendering it useless. The health and quality of data don’t depend solely on driving incomplete and invalid entries out of the system, but on enhancing and improving its value as well.  An email appending services involve eliminating inaccuracies as well as enriching the data with relevant and current details. It is often done keeping a business, its marketing practices and targeted customers in mind. 

 

Effective data cleansing plan

 

CRM data cleaning and email address validation often happen in the following five steps:

  • Detection of errors and inconsistencies in data acquired via single source and multiple sources
  • Implementation of manual and automated data hygiene practices
  • Deployment of mapping functions and schema-data transformations
  • Data appending to maintain the quality of data
  • Regular maintenance schedule to wipe away incoming errors and factual inconsistencies

 

Having a robust data cleansing plan is vital to your business’s well-being. Especially when you don’t want to end up with the companies that are relying only on thirty per cent of data and have no idea how to tackle disqualified leads, spam traps and the mammoth (read: outdated) data they are sitting on. 

 

Conclusion

 

Data appending is a deciding factor to help businesses to stay ahead of the curve and get an early lead. It is imperative to monitor data quality to keep it organised and tight, however, the critical factor is to find the right and experienced email verification service, web scraping services provider to ensure your data remains secure and is handled with utmost caution. As you work on implementing the CRM cleaning practices mentioned above, it is good to remember that it is a continuous task and requires participation from all hands on-board.