Over the past few weeks, we’ve had no less than 3 clients talk to us about the accuracy of the contacts in their database. In fact, it came up twice that reps had called on dead people. By dead, I don’t mean switched jobs, retired or can’t be found. I mean Dead: the termination of the biological functions that sustain a living organism (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dead).
It’s no question that keeping accurate data in your SFA or CRM is a difficult task. Due to sales rep turnover, ignoring of processes, or just a plain lack of attention to the contacts and their information, prospect data will get old very quickly. Unless you have dedicated resources that spend time on keeping a sales database fresh, it’s almost impossible to even get close to 50% accuracy.
The overriding message is that the foundation of what your marketing and sales organizations need to function effectively requires a high level of accuracy with your prospect and client data. Asking your sales team to call on individuals from a stale CRM is like asking them to go fishing in a dried up lake. The hopes of generating new revenue from what should be considered a company lifeline is quite risky for your company. I heard a number a few months ago from a data expert who stated that 30% of the typical CRM prospect data becomes out of date about every 6 months. This is a serious number when referring to the lifeline of any business.
So, by default, there will be some dead people in your system. There is no way to avoid it, right? People die. It is inevitable. However, some companies have more dead people in their database than others. Where do you fall?
If you feel that this is a problem that effects your sales and marketing efforts, contact echogravity about our data foundation plan.