Data Gathering Opportunities Growing—Require Careful Scrutiny by Marketers
By Jacqueline Renfrow, DMNews
The value of relationship marketing campaigns is
dependent on the quality of customer data. However,
keeping data quality at a high level is easier said
than done when the data comes from a range of
sources, including social media.
“In the direct banking business, much of our success
is hinged on the data that we have and the quality
of it,” says Colleen Zambole, VP of marketing
operations at financial services company Discover.
“This allows us the potential for greater success in
the use of it and subsequent analysis of it.”
Although online social communities are fairly new on
the CRM scene, most agencies are confident they are
viable and quantifiable CRM marketing tools. Service
provider RTC Relationship Marketing, for instance,
uses tags on links to track when someone clicks
through from a social media site to their client's
own Web page. Other marketers use statistics to
model a chain of events from a consumer's social
media interaction to transaction.
“We use social media monitoring, social analytics,
and social data collection in various ways to help
shape all customer communications, respond to
customer concerns, identify advocates, and create
meaningful social media strategies based on customer
data,” says Jeannette Kocsis, SVP for digital
strategy at The Agency Inside Harte-Hanks.
Today, data collection comes in two forms:
Information provided deliberately from the customer
or data gathered from observation of the
customer's actions. With so many sources, it's
paramount for marketers to know how to handle
conflicting data, corrections, and data validation.
“We look at a lot of data that retailers provide,
analyze it across their internal silos, and then
combine it with inside Acxiom source data,” says
Brady Gadberry, director of product marketing at
Axciom, an interactive marketing services company.
Marketers in the travel industry can collect a
wealth of customer information through the
reservation process, which can take place online or
over the phone. Lincoln Barrett, VP for CRM and
multi-brand marketing at InterContinental Hotels
Group, notes that data must be managed carefully.
“We have to be mindful of every changing nuance and
keeping data clean in that environment,” he says.
“The future for data lies in how you manage a single
customer view across multiple channels and
Once data is collected, companies must determine
which results are most relevant to their CRM
programs, including customer revenue contribution,
and campaign-specific metrics.
“It is common for the marketing cycle to extend over
a period of time, creating a gap between the initial
investment and the financial return,” says Michael
Duke, SVP of marketing intelligence at RTC. “The
ability to identify the leading indicators of
success, typically engagement types of measures,
allows you to fill that gap and provide relevant
metrics before you know the revenue's impact.”
Historically, customer contact data is out-of-date
by year's end, and requires constant updates. The
future of CRM data collection will grow increasingly
challenging, Duke adds.
“More complex data structures will require more
sophisticated infrastructure and analyses,” says
Duke, adding that low quality data can be the number
one reason behind a failed marketing effort.
---Source: DMNews Oct. 1, 2010 (www.dmnews.com).