The worlds first self-cleaning CRM – courtesy of Jigsaw

Most people just dump names into their CRM and don’t give it a second thought. They think they’re done. They think they have a stable asset. They think that they have something that will not change.Then, a few weeks or months later, they try to fill an event such as a webinar or in-person seminar and almost no one registers. The response rate is well below miserable. At this point inquiring minds want to know what happened.

The first thing they notice upon closer inspection is that the bounce rate is through the roof. Most people throw up their hands and call it a day at this point. The prospect of dealing with the 50% of their CRM database that just bounced is daunting.

The real issue is that people’s situations change with astonishing frequency. And more so all the time. Statistically, some part of the information on the business card you just entered, will obsolete within just weeks or months.

Long gone are the days when you could just load up a name and expect it to still be good months later. A sales territory is no longer a stable thing demarked by state lines. Instead, a sales territory is like a big game of musical chairs. Everyone is moving all the time.

A CRM containing obsolete information is referred to as being “dirty”. All CRMs are dirty to some degree. The cost of keeping a CRM totally clean at all times is probably prohibitive and not necessary. You need to keep your CRM clean enough so that when you make an offer, you get an acceptable response.

Here’s where the rubber meets the road. So, who is responsible for cleaning CRM data? That’s right. No one is. Not marketing, not sales, no one.

So why isn’t anyone responsible for cleaning and making current one of the company’s most valuable assets? Mostly because nobody sees the issue. No one’s aware of the problem. Among those who are aware, the issue comes down to money. Cost.

There’s another related problem. Even if you are willing to pay the cost of buying clean data, you can’t. No one sells it. Everyone claims to sell “leads” but they are really only selling stale names. List providers are not immune from the forces that cause data decay.

So, if you can’t buy it, at least at a price that’s not astronomical, what can you do? Unfortunately, you have to do the work yourself. You have to validate every name, company, title, address, email and phone number by hand at a bare minimum of once per quarter.

The good news is that you can do this validation in conjunction with your lead generation or lead incubation (drip marketing) campaigns. You have to call, mail and email them all and then take the time to research, update and or delete anything that bounces in any way. We are talking time-costly grunt work.

Jigsaw is a business card sharing service that represents some light at the end of the dirty database tunnel. Jigsaw allows sales people to share business cards (leads). More importantly, it allows for data cleaning. This happens by virtue of the fact that members update each other’s business card entries with updates.

The result of over 100,000 members all editing and updating the Jigsaw database is that you get a leads database that is twice as clean as your average CRM database. All for a very low price.

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