Me-commerce: Optimise Your Data to Get Personal [FLIPBOOK]

Posted by Ian Newcombe on Thu, Aug 15, 2013
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Personalisation is key to modern marketing success, and you may already have everything you need to begin.

Two phrases are increasingly common in the multi-channel distribution industry: personalisation and Big Data. According to current hype, neither can exist in isolation, but the fact is your business is probably well on the way to generating a Big Data store, and is ready to begin personalisation now.

Data Optimisation – Not Sexy, Not Optional

Where Big Data and personalisation are considered hugely exciting, data optimisation is far less so. Obtaining and processing new data is always regarded as more exciting or insightful. But the truth is, current customer data needs historical information to give context. Which means for maximum business intelligence success, your old data needs to be in tip-top shape.



Getting optimised – Clean up

To get your multi-channel distribution machine firing on all cylinders, the first task is to clean up your existing data:

  • Identify and remove duplicate contacts.
  • Identify and remove customers who have explicitly requested deletion.
  • Identify and remove deceased customers.

“25% of an average prospect database is inaccurate” - Sirius Decisions

Removing out-of-date information makes your data processing efforts and your marketing much more efficient:

  • No more wasted time or resources contacting disinterested (or deceased) customers.
  • Less risk of upsetting existing customers with duplicate emails and letters.
  • More efficient IT  operation, and reduced resource requirements.
  • Greatly reduced cost of printing, production and postage as optimised data prevents duplicate mailings

With a clean dataset, your multi-channel distribution operations have a good platform on which to prepare for personalisation.

Getting optimised – Build up

The next step towards fully optimised data for successful marketing is to build upon what you have:

  • Link data from other sources to complement the records you already have.
  • Ideally you should have a single view of your data, but if you have other data sets, use them to “fill blanks”, such as missing first names or address details.
  • Consider purchasing additional or appending profiling data such as lifestyle or company turnover, demographics, Experian Mosaic etc. for import into your own CRM system.

As the name would imply, “Big Data” works best with vast datasets and includes data from other sources such as social media. You should encourage your sales and marketing teams to continue to grow the CRM system that underpins your multi-channel distribution, pulling in data from social media platforms.

“More data is better – as long as you can find a way to tie it all together.” Marty Sunde, SVP at Acxiom.

Getting Intelligent - Breaking data silos

Once the contact data has been cleaned and completed, the next step is to link all of the customer-centric data you have. By linking contacts with other data held elsewhere in your business you gain all manner of useful, and valuable insights. Applying Business Intelligence in this way allows you to:

  • See customer purchasing habits.
  • Calculate complete customer value.
  • Identify wider purchasing trends.
  • Segment customers based on any criteria for new marketing campaigns.

Getting Personal – Fire it up

With all the gaps filled, your data is now fully optimised and ready for use. You now have everything you need to get personal with your customers:

  • Create targeted sales offers based on previous purchase history.
  • Analyse known customer preferences and use them to create new products or services.
  • Cross-sell and upsell related products, knowing that the offers are relevant to your customers.

When offers are personalised, the chances of them being acted upon by your customers are far greater. Processing and re-processing your data will help identify new potential opportunities to exploit, but which are of benefit to your customer too.

Staying Personal – Keep on optimising

To ensure that your data continues to realise maximum value, your team needs to keep adjusting, cleaning and adding to it regularly. Optimising data is an ongoing task, which pays major dividends. Failure to perform routine optimisation will put you right back at step one, cleaning up.

“56% of consumers unsubscribe from email lists because the content is no longer relevant.” –

So to get me-commerce working in tandem with your sales and marketing strategy, remember:

  • Clean up
  • Build up
  • Smarten up
  • Fire it up

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Topics: Customer Insight, Retail, Multi-channel