DATA! Scrub it real good!

A few weeks ago I got an email from one of my favorite meal delivery companies. I have received emails from them in the past and even ordered from them but they messed up their data when the email went out. 

It looked something like this in my inbox: 

Aw man! It’s like that field just wasn’t selected correctly. 

Data seems to be the backbone of much of what we do in marketing. And if it isn’t massaged just right then the email goes out wrong. You call the wrong person. Or your sales team doesn’t have the right company that is interested in your product.

I worked with a team a few weeks ago on a hunt to find out why lead ownership wasn’t being assigned…and the culprit was a mis-spelling of the product. There was a ton of back work to fix the data. BAH! Have you been there? 

What are some ways to make sure you get the most out of your data in the simplest way possible? A few pieces of advice from someone who looks at lists very often. 

My biggest piece of advice is make the system do the work for you. Give those imperative fields that assign your leads and contacts system rules and drop down fields. It sure is a pain to upload with all those kickbacks but going back and cleaning up is an even bigger pain and a lot of hours. 

Before you send the data off to be cleaned understand where it comes from and where it should go. Take a look at the list and make sure there isn’t anything up for questions such as additional tabs or a weird field in a list. 

When you have fields in your database make sure they are as customized as possible. Are there particular fields for assignment rules? Make sure those fields are highly customized so only the data you accept can go into those fields. States – make them abbreviated. Product – make it a drop down field. Then if something is off your CRM or upload system will give you a kickback error. A spreadsheet is a lot of data for one person to make sure everything is perfect – make your system do the work for you. 

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