Marketing can be just like a regular computer and your contact database is a part of it. And like any computer, it’s not cool when the whole thing starts to lag. Forcing your campaign to work with a glitchy database is only going to slow it down as it mixes in successful leads with bounce backs, wrong numbers, and all other kinds of dead-end errors.
This is often the case of really old databases and it’s every marketer’s nightmare to have sudden rushes of success bogged down by the technical errors of clunky information. That’s why, even if means putting a campaign on hold, you have to clean it out:
Check your sources
Where do you get your information? Do you directly ask it during events, surveys, or purchase contacts from a list vendor? Or do you lure it in via contact forms in exchange for content (e.g. white papers, videos, research data etc)? It can even be a mix of both. What you need to check is how often does it add more ne w information to your database.
Keep it complete
Bad data is incomplete data. Depending on your marketing style, you might need more than just a phone number or an email before a piece of info is good enough for your campaign. Sometimes even certain knowledge of a prospect’s company is in order.
Have an update plan
You get software updates all the time, not to mention you have the convenience of vendors notifying you before they do. Do yourself the same favor and start planning on when to clean up, back up, and add up your marketing database. That way your campaign will have fewer unexpected stops due to bad data.
Know when data expires/changes
There are billions of professionals and decision makers all over the world. And among them, there could be thousands (if not more) who are changing their jobs, moving up the ranks, or even starting a new business entirely. Understanding the rate at which this happens helps you predict when data goes bad and further helps you plan your maintenance.
If you take the time to slow down and re-evaluate, you’ll waste less time compared to just trudging on and even less risk of getting stuck because your campaign has finally fallen apart from the bad data.