Earlier this year, it was reported that 57% of U.S. chief information officers (CIOs) said they expect the volume of data they manage to rise by 33% over the next 12 months. And 83% of those same CIOs saw data as a valuable asset, but one that is not being utilized to its full potential.
To manage the data explosion, many companies are adding a new role to their organizations: the chief data officer (CDO). CDO adoption is further driven by the need for a consistent approach to managing data, rising costs due to poor data quality and increased regulatory and governance requirements.
But while CDOs may help larger companies, smaller organizations typically don’t have the budget to hire these elite data experts. In fact, for many small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), managing data is the responsibility of the CIO, information technology (IT), or even finance, marketing or the business owners themselves. And there’s no doubt these executives find the task to be a huge challenge, especially for their marketing initiatives, where good data can be the difference between an ordinary year and an extraordinary year.
The Consequences of Poor Data Quality
Using quality data for outbound email marketing initiatives is critical. Erroneous or outdated data can cause response rates to dive, and opt-out and spam reporting to increase. And while it’s no secret that bad email addresses will lead to poor campaign results and even worse ROI, some executives accept these outcomes as a normal part of everyday operations.
What they may not realize is the consequences for bad data quality can be much more severe than merely negative email marketing results: their company’s email campaigns can be ceased by spam and data watch dog groups. For offending companies, it can take six months to get the IP address in question out of trouble. In order to initiate emailing again right away, a new IP address will be required – meaning the tricky and time-consuming process of “warming up” that new IP address will need to take place, which can potentially be the kiss of death for many small businesses.
So, what can SMBs do to ensure their data is as good as it can be for email marketing? Here are three tips:
Indeed, there are many risks associated with using the wrong email data provider, especially those offering lists at bare bones prices. What they don’t tell you is that their accuracy rates are only 70 or 60 percent – or worse – meaning many of your emails will go unread, and your investment will be wasted. Trustworthy email data providers will not hesitate to provide a written guarantee of 90 percent or higher data accuracy. On top of that, they’ll also offer the use of their data for ongoing campaigns, as opposed to a one-off effort.
While data quality remains a top success factor in your email marketing initiatives, using these tips should help ensure your campaigns are set up for maximum success – and keep you and your company out of hot water.
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