Get a Grip on Your CRM Data: 7 Steps to Improve Data Quality - Part 1

Chris Fritsch
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Chris Fritsch - ClientsFirst Consulting

Good data quality may seem like a lofty goal, because keeping CRM contact records clean and current requires some frequent heavy lifting. These seven steps can bring better data quality within reach.

Data – Your Most Valuable Asset

Almost every marketer knows that good CRM data helps to drive and deliver results and provides the actionable insights necessary to enhance client service and ultimately develop business. But without accurate or complete data, being able to provide an outstanding client experience or to market your services effectively can be a long, hard climb. To effectively develop new clients and keep current Clients, it’s essential to continually improve the quality of your data.

The Data on Bad Data

Research estimates that without dedicated attention to data quality, up to 30% of an organization’s data can become outdated or incorrect each year. Just think about losing a third of the value of your most valuable asset!

While it may seem daunting, improving the quality of your CRM data doesn’t have to be complicated, costly or time consuming. In fact, if your plan addresses the following seven essentials for achieving CRM data quality, your ability to get the client service and business development results you want increases exponentially.

Essentials for CRM Data Quality

1. Set Goals

Do you know what you want to achieve? If not, how will you know when you get there. It’s imperative to set measurable, achievable goals agreed upon by key stakeholders. Some common goals might include:

    • Identifying more qualified leads or prospects
    • Developing a new service line for a niche market
    • Having more frequent communication with Clients or referral sources

Once you have clearly identified your goals, you can determine which data you will need to gather that can deliver actionable insights and improve results.

2. Define the Processes

Firms that have implemented a CRM system have a good tool to help manage their data more effectively, but without processes in place, data quality can quickly deteriorate. Once you’ve outlined what you want to know and what data you need to collect, define a process to establish accountability for data collection, management and maintenance. It’s important that your team understands the quality expectations and desired results as well as their respective roles in assisting.

3. Don’t Forget Culture

Embedding CRM into your culture can be one of the greatest challenges you’ll face. Successful adoption of the system depends not just on participation by the marketing team but also on the backing from leaders and adoption through the ranks of users and their administrative staff. Everyone who will use the system needs training, but make sure every training session includes the impact and benefits of clean CRM data – not only for the organization, but for them personally.

In our next post, we’ll discuss the additional success steps to guide you on your way to better CRM data quality.

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Chris Fritsch
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