At Silver Jet we deal with a lot of data, which means we have quite a few views on the best ways to understand and manage that data. The key has to be accuracy. Data accuracy is the difference between missing opportunities and wasting money or successfully cultivating opportunities and growing your business and revenue.
Most businesses have duplication within their databases, maybe unknown, maybe for deliberate reasons or maybe it’s simply how their business works (e.g. customers may have multiple accounts for divisions, maybe a loyalty account and a credit account or may maybe multiple systems that overlap).
Assuming you think there may some duplication in your overall data or maybe you want to understand your customer base at several levels (Site, Company, People, etc) then you need a robust method to cluster your Customer and Prospect datasets.
By merging all your data using advanced data clustering techniques you could really understand your customer base. Duplication can seriously skew your understanding.
The following answers are a few examples of what can be obtained at Site/Household, Company or Person level:
How many customers do you actually have
- Not duplicated accounts
How many actual new customers do you obtain each month?
- Exclude duplication
- Exclude where they already have another trading account with you
- Exclude where they have previously stopped trading and opened a new account/Guest Checkout
How many actual customers have stopped trading?
- Excluding customers that are still trading on other accounts/guest checkouts etc
True Customer Segmentation distributions?
- For example, several small accounts that are actually the same customer could be 1 large account and could be managed differently to maximise their potential
How many of my prospects/acquisition are already a customer/lapsed customer?
- By collating all your data, it also enables you to apply disparate information to your data to obtain true insight and data for targeting e.g. a customer may have multiple accounts with you or have purchased several times as a guest; how much has that individual customer spent? How many transactions?
Wrongly communicating with your customers or sending promotions to them they should not receive can be both financially costly and unprofessional for your business.
Save Costs and Benefit:
- Do not communicate with lapsed/lost or dormant customers that are still trading. This can be very costly if promotions are included
- Welcome new customer accounts differently if they are already an existing trading customer
- Only send net communications once at the level required e.g. If at site/household level, do not send multiple communications to the same site, if at company level, only send 1 communication to the correct site and person
- Talk to the right customers at the right time with the right message
- Know your prospects are ‘really’ a prospect at whichever level you choose (person, site etc)
How to achieve this
Simply grouping your data is not a viable option. Discreet differences in data prevent this, all these could be the same person:
Mr John Smith
Mr J Smith
J Smith PhD
Mr Smith PhD
Company and addresses can have Road, Rd, Ave, Avenue, Ltd, Limited in different address lines and have various errors and omissions.
How Silver Jet clusters your data
We have developed in-house solutions that perform the following:
- Standardises and prepares data for matching with up to 11,000 potential updates
- Extrapolates and extracts key data elements from the now standardised data
- Processes a 3 phased matching process (Match-in-Match-in-Match) with the extracted data using multiple match metrics to create mutuality at multiple levels and grades (up to 6 grades per level) at Address/Household, Company, Company Site, Person Company and Person Site level
- Creates clusters of data at multiple tiers and levels within 3 nested infinite loops. This allows customers to link together even when there are no direct relationships by using Proxy data to create the relationships
This service can operate as either a one-off service or on an ongoing basis by identifying new, changed and missing data.
Coupling this data management with a strategic marketing customer/acquisition journey/lifecycle enables you to:
- Communicate to the correct customers
- Communicate at the correct time
- Communicate with the correct messaging / promotions
- Communicate using the correct channels based on potential yield
Quality data is the foundation of great customer centric marketing activity. If you build a strong foundation and ensure that it maintains a high standard, then you are putting yourself in the best possible position to achieve great returns on your marketing spend.