Transform your contact database without the hassle
Your contact database is critical to your business as it’s an immensely valuable tool for your strategic marketing.
Having a curated and qualified database of prospects, leads and customers drives a series of benefits for your organisation, including shorter sales cycles, increased close rates, profitability and growth.
But managing and maintaining an effective database is not a simple undertaking.
Contact databases should emphasise quality over quantity and be designed to accommodate pertinent information regarding the target market to ensure the success of marketing campaigns. Good contact databases should be built with the end user of the information in mind, be simple to navigate and have the necessary structures and data in place to allow for data manipulation and extraction.
The larger the organisation the greater the challenge and complexity
Experience has found that as companies grow and expand, the more unwieldy their contact database becomes over time.
Contact databases need constant maintenance to ensure information is constantly updated and contains the relevant data needed to execute effective marketing campaigns.
Unmanaged databases eventually become a giant list of contacts
All these issues eventually lead to databases essentially becoming a giant list of contacts segmented by the usual meaningless demographics.
This makes the database impractical and ineffective as a strategic marketing tool due to the fact that a disproportionate amount of information is missing or incorrectly categorised.
Making your database more effective
An effective contact marketing database should have contacts segmented by lead type and have some form of indication of where they are in a sales funnel or buyer’s journey. Being able to identify the source of how each prospect entered your database and tracking them throughout their buyer journey will unlock attribution reporting for future strategy decision making.
The database should also contain pertinent marketing information such as the contact’s intent to purchase, their current point in the sales cycle as well as their propensity to consider or adopt new methods if they are with a competitor.
Furthermore, contact database segmentation reduces friction between teams and empowers the sales function to prioritises pre-qualified leads for greater conversion success.
Consistency is critical
Contact databases used by multiple teams for different purposes and in different ways leads to inconsistency in the way the data is recorded and utilised. This leads to a state where the integrity of the database becomes questionable as a result of the multiple teams not following a uniform or consolidated approach.
All marketing and sales activities should revolve around the same database to ensure alignment and provide visibility across the entire sales cycle for each prospect and customer.
Consistency will also enable an understanding of where leads came from. This will contribute to focusing on attracting the right Marketing Qualified Leads (MQLs) via the best lead acquisition channels for your business.
Where do you start with optimising your contact database?
It can be challenging to know where to start with taking control over an unwieldy database.
It’s important to ensure the segmentation is right for your business and that the right data will be captured going forward.
At the same time, it’s just as important is getting started with communicating to that database, and using the outcomes of that communication to identify the current status of each prospect in your database. where they are in a sales funnel or buyer’s journey, their intent to purchase etc.
This initial information can then be used for more targeted marketing which can then be personalised to match the prospect’s current position in the sales cycle.
There’s a high likelihood that simply getting started and building up a communication rhythm will uncover a great amount of qualified leads your sales team simply did not even know they had because the database was not segmented appropriately. Being able to uncover the difference between MQLs vs SQLs will make sales nurturing more targeted and effective, ideally even shortening sales cycles over time.