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What’s the economic business impact of having a clean contact database in CRM?

Today, customer expectations of companies are higher than ever. Due to the assumption that most organizations have immediate access to an accurate customer contact database, it’s no wonder why. To meet these increasingly demanding needs, firms need to know basic information in real-time (at the minimum), and use data to understand what customers are looking for—before they might even know themselves.

Given this challenging environment, data integrity is a game-changer for any salesperson. Having clean and accurate data to work with gives you a serious competitive advantage. And the cost of keeping, or even using, dirty data… is pretty shocking. SiriusDecisions claims that “the cost of bad data is staggering, and the longer incorrect records remain in the database, the more expensive it becomes to deal with.” They even go on to say that “it takes $1 to verify a record as it is entered, $10 to cleanse and de-dupe it and $100 if nothing is done, as the ramifications of the mistakes are felt over and over again.” 

Whoa.

This is why companies need to shift their goals from doing one-time data cleanses, to ongoing maintenance.  SiriusDecisions even estimates that “organizations that have an early-phase data strategy in place can expect a (roughly) 25 percent uplift in conversion rates between the inquiry and marketing qualified lead stages.” Nice.

The ugly truth about your data

Customer service is of utmost importance and the lifeblood of successful businesses. Although the term “basic customer data” may imply it’s easy to collect and maintain, the vast majority of companies are actually using obsolete data (inaccurate, incomplete, non-existent, stale) that may contain critical errors. And even accurate data expires quickly. 

You may have heard that B2B data decays at a rate of 70% per year. Due to natural events like people switching jobs or roles, that’s just the nature of collecting CRM data. Because of this, 69% percent of firms have reported having out-of-date CRM client records. On top of all that, it’s just tough to get salespeople to enter, without mistakes, all of their client information. It’s been reported that 88% of CRM users admit to entering incomplete contact information, and 62% of CRM users don’t log all their activities at all (Briefing).

This makes for a pretty bleak outlook for any kind of strategy around using CRM data to increase sales. 

Who has the time to clean it up? 

If we’re being honest—no one, really. And definitely not your salespeople, if you want them out there actually selling. But the good news is there are automation tools that already exist that can help clean up your CRM data and keep it that way. 

The automation capabilities of these solutions mean that, through AI tech and machine learning, your client data can be accurately captured and automatically entered into the CRM. By automating data cleansing, and truly achieving ongoing data integrity without relying on manual data entry, companies can avoid the following negative consequences:

  1. Lengthy annual clean-up projects.
  2. Relying on irrelevant data for important business decisions.
  3. Wasting marketing dollars targeting contacts that don’t exist, or missing VIPs altogether.
  4. Awkward conversations with clients due to incorrect information.

Let’s look a little closer at how customer intelligence tools like Introhive can use automation to solve these pain points. 

  1. Lengthy annual clean-up projects

Asking salespeople to do tasks that take away from their time selling hurts revenue. Not only that, it’s likely that salespeople really don’t enjoy doing these mundane tasks that are a big, time-consuming distraction from their actual jobs. Through automated data cleansing and capturing, you don’t have to ask for any additional time from the sales team. 

  1. Relying on irrelevant data for important business decisions.

Business strategy relies on accurate data. Analyzing trends and making sales forecasts are part of the job that needs the right numbers to back them up. It’s that simple. Using dirty data will have you coming up short, every time, in one way or another. Not to mention your competitors who are using clean and reliable data, will always have the upper hand.

  1. Wasting marketing dollars targeting contacts that don’t exist, or missing VIPs altogether.

It directly impacts the bottom line if you’re using precious marketing dollars to target the wrong people. Spending money on campaigns that reach out to contacts that no longer exist, or entirely missing important decision-makers, is a huge waste of the marketing budget… not to mention, embarrassing and frustrating.

  1. Awkward conversations with clients due to incorrect information.

Using dirty data ruins deals. Customers don’t feel important or valued if you’re constantly making inaccurate references to their job titles, or even names. After all, would you do business with someone that couldn’t get your basic customer information straight? People expect, and deserve, more.

Meeting customer needs is the bare minimum.

Clean data gives salespeople a 360-degree customer view at all times, which in today’s environment is the bare minimum. It also helps the entire organization stay on the same page by identifying who knows who. Data integrity helps everyone on the sales team do their jobs better, and helps to build stellar and long-lasting customer relationships. Knowing your customer well, in turn, allows them to place trust in you. 

Isn’t that what we’re all striving for?

Conclusion

There is an economic impact on your business from working with a clean and reliable customer contact database. Through the automation features of customer intelligence tools, you can breathe a sigh of relief knowing your sales team always has access to accurate and up-to-date client information.

To see how these kinds of tools can help your organization, book a demo with Introhive today.

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