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Blog post By Paula Chiocchi on 2021-09-15

Data quality continues to be a major issue for digital marketers. And it’s easy to understand why. Marketing today is increasingly data-driven, from intent monitoring that pinpoints the right contacts to target, to omni-channel campaigns with personalized display ads, email marketing and more. As a marketer, not only do you need to make sure your third-party data is sourced from a quality provider that guarantees validity, but you also need to make sure your own customer and prospect data is up to date. Because it probably isn’t as accurate as you think it is. Here’s why:


  • Data is always decaying. Studies have shown that B2B data regularly decays at a rate of up to 70% per year as people change jobs, switch careers, move or just change their email address.


  • Increased layoffs. The economic uncertainty of 2020 led to an increase in layoffs and companies downsizing, or sadly, closing altogether, resulting in even more outdated data. 


  • People working from home are harder to reach. More buyers are using their personal devices and personal email addresses, as well as switching back and forth throughout the day, making it harder to know where, when and how to target them most effectively if you’re using stale data.   


  • The Great Resignation: Employees are leaving the workplace by choice. Over the last few months, U.S Department of Labor data has shown a significant increase in people voluntarily leaving their jobs, especially in professional and business services.


Digital Marketing Impact

The fact is, databases have been put through the wringer over the past 18 months, and the recent “Great Resignation” means that prospect data quality is declining even faster. If you’re leveraging advanced data strategies in your marketing, using poor quality data has a negative ripple effect since email addresses are used to build digital profiles and match identity graphs.


Identity graphs are a great way to build audiences for digital campaigns, but bad data—such as an invalid email address for an individual no longer at the company they used to work for—lowers your identity graph match rate and stunts the effectiveness.


Display ad delivery will also suffer if your contact data quality is low, as business emails are matched to an individual’s personal email to serve an ad.


Mobile IDs—Used more often now with many continuing to work from home—are also impacted by the changing market.


OMI’s Response

For me and my team at OMI, this data quality crisis and the resulting impact haven’t been a surprise. So we’ve been working even harder than usual to ensure our data is up to our own high standards. And we’ve been getting the word out about the pandemic’s effect on data quality since April 2020. We recognized right away that the economic and social happenings would change the way marketers reach audiences and directly impact data quality. Specifically, we performed two rigorous database cleans to remove invalid contact data.


  • COVID clean 1: Approximately 6 million businesses were written out of our B2B database file along with 13 million contacts.
  • COVID clean 2: Roughly 1.5 million businesses and 5.5 million contacts were purged from our B2B database.


During this time, in spite of all the changes and data purges, the OMI database grew to more than 78 million B2B contacts. And we’re so confident in the quality of our data we guarantee it: 95% email validity for 30 days.


Removing invalid records from our database not only benefits clients that use our third-party data for their campaigns, since we track the bad email data to build our suppression list, it’s also hugely beneficial for clients that use our data cleansing service for their own databases. OMI’s data cleansing can automatically purge invalid or out-of-date data without eliminating high-value prospect records, and in some cases inaccurate records can be corrected or even have new data added for a fuller picture of the contact. OMI can clean large files with upwards of 35 million email records in as little as two weeks.


Whether you’re looking for database cleansing or access to fresh, quality third-party prospect data after all the changes of the past 18 months, OMI has a solution that can fuel stronger results for your marketing and sales campaigns. Contact us today to learn more.


Outward Media’s proven data cleansing services and targeted, accurate B2B data can enable you to achieve better digital marketing ROI and, ultimately, convert more prospects into customers. Go here to find out about leveraging our SMB and medical market data on the LiveRamp Data Marketplace.

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