If you ask me, data was one of the most overused terms of 2014. But even I can’t deny there’s massive power there. Quite honestly, when I think about how much data is collected on the internet every day, I literally get nightmares. It’s a tricky subject because you really have to be strategic about how to process and manage these huge masses of data. And by “huge,” I mean HUGE – a phenomenon most marketers like to call, “Big Data.”
Big Data Is A Challenge (Which You Better Accept)
Handling big amounts of data is a challenge. But you have to face it and find ways to benefit from it in order to pursue successful marketing efforts, win business and maintain good client relationships. And yes, I am being dramatic about this topic because bad data indeed is a huge threat to your business. Did you know that bad data costs US businesses more than $600 Billion dollars per year? Clearly, this kind of irrelevant, outdated, duplicated, incomplete or even false data (all the dirty stuff you don’t want to work with) is a problem.
So where does it come from? Marketers often work with imported lists, manually entered business cards or data coming from social media--a recipe for trouble if I’ve ever seen one. As my colleague Rebecca Rutherford suggested in her blog post some time ago, there has to be a way to cure this “Dirty Data Epidemic!”
Inaccurate invoices: A Nightmare For Everyone!
When speaking and working with people who organize trade shows, I often see how they struggle to produce accurate contracts and invoices for their exhibitors or attendees. Why is it so hard to keep data clean and maintain their visitor and exhibitor databases? The devil lies in the details.
If different departments are involved in one selling procedure, it is important to make sure each and every team member is working with information from one central database. I regularly see what happens if this isn’t the case: I receive invoices with wrong company details or exhibition stand package details that I never ordered! As a client, it’s a frustrating experience – and it reduces the likelihood that I’m going to re-book my booth next year. A client’s nightmare, an organizer’s nightmare – a nightmare for everyone!
A Good CRM System: The Key To A Professional Image And Happy Clients
So how can you keep your data clean and ensure you don’t frustrate your clients? It’s not rocket science! Luckily, we live in times where technology supports us on a daily basis. Make use of it and stop entering data again and again in different spreadsheets or systems. Make your life easier by entering your information once in a decent CRM system, and then have the whole team work from that one single source of truth. It’s that easy.