A new year is the ideal time for a fresh start. Just ask anyone who’s starting a diet or embarking on a new fitness program. That’s true for your database too; it’s never a bad time to assess your system’s health and get it into peak condition. Database management may not get your pulse racing like an extreme rock-climbing workout, but if you make it a priority in the coming year, you’ll see a greater return on your investment than with almost any other change you make.
Here’s what you need to achieve peak performance with your marketing database.
Get Your Data Together
Centralizing information on one multi-purpose platform is essential to making your database fully functional. With a centralized platform, you and your database management team can see connections between customer and prospect data that would have eluded your analytics if the stacks were separate. How do sales and marketing data interact? What can you learn from looking at how leads become buyers or how buyers become repeat customers? Where do your spheres of knowledge intersect? To answer these questions, you need to have your data in one central location.
Change It Up
Just as changing your workout can reinvigorate you, introducing changes into your database management strategy will help you see your information in a new light, giving you useful insight into your audience. If you’ve been going it alone, get a database management specialist who can do for your database what a personal trainer does for your physical fitness. If you’ve got a database manager, find a focus for your efforts and develop a long-term plan for success. A potential starting point may be reducing churn, which should be a high priority for marketers this year as markets grow increasingly fractured and lead development takes on greater importance.
Lighten Your Database
Are you hanging onto legacy software or outdated information because you don’t want to face the process of data migration and cleansing? A marketing database consultant can walk you through every step of data migration, normalization, and optimization to make the transition as painless as possible. If data isn’t working for you, it’s working against you – costing you money, lowering your email deliverability, and obscuring meaningful data points with clutter. Make this your year to shed the weight of excess data and cut the low-value information from your database.
Too many companies put time and effort into database maintenance without getting a full return on their investment because they use default report settings. Every company is unique; analytics should serve the individual business, not offer a one-size-fits-all information dump. Get together with your database manager, CMO, and sales leaders to refine your reports and create a dashboard that lets you see what you need to know at a glance. Information only matters if it’s accessible, and better reporting puts it all at your fingertips.
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