We’re in the middle of a study of customer databases. It’s actually quite a simple review, but that’s only because our work delivering guided voicemail messages enables a complete analysis of every list we work with. To run our study we selected a random cross section of campaigns that ran through the first half of 2012. The full sample came to just over 50,000 records and of course all the programs were business to business campaigns. For any clients reading this post, let me assure you that your confidence was never breached. We only worked with our internal results spreadsheets.
We also screened out all but customer databases. We wanted to answer the question,” On average, what does the average customer database look like? ” We hope that some answers to that question will help us identify for our clients,the most common areas where their data is weak and how they can get the best return on their investment when it comes to fixing data.
One result has come screaming to the forefront of our conclusions and of all the data fixes that any client might need to do, this one is the simplest and I believe the cheapest to fix.
CLEAN OUT YOUR DUPLICATES!
In 2004 when we ran our first data study, less than 1% of the contact records were duplicates. By June 2009, that number had exploded to 4.55% and it has pretty much stayed there, measuring 4.59% of all the files.
There is a lot of additional information that we’re finding about data and we’ll follow up in future posts, but for now let me suggest that a concerted effort to dedupe your databases could return some big savings in future marketing campaigns built on that data. Almost 12% of the failed records did so because they were duplicated. This is an easy, low cost fix.