Did you know that nearly half of email traffic is considered to be spam? Plus, 30% of your email information becomes outdated in just one year because of obsolete and erroneous data.
In today’s competitive landscape, quality data is crucial for every enterprise that leverages email marketing channels. Many marketers put all their resources and time into optimizing the graphics, design, and copy but overlook something as fundamental as the quality of the data being used.
Having the best software and automation practices are crucial features of any digital marketing toolkit, but so is the information you use to segment your contacts and target your audience. Here are some of the reasons why data quality is critical in email marketing.
Why data quality is paramount
Email use is nearly universal, so even with the growth of social media, email marketing is still very relevant today. Many companies are paying attention to writing eye-catching email copy as a strategy for lead generation and customer retention. But emails are only as effective as the data that drives them. So, what can strong data do for your business?
#1. Avoids problems caused by inaccurate data
Leveraging inaccurate data or overlooking data quality can cause problems for your business, as you may end up targeting the wrong audience or making decisions based on incorrect information. Making decisions grounded in erroneous data is no better than guessing, so if you are planning to use data for devising marketing strategies, you must ensure that you prioritize quality.
Data inconsistency can also lead to problems like duplicate email messages, which is very unappealing to clients. Data quality is a business imperative because it helps you keep every department aligned and integrated. To avoid problems caused by inaccurate data, it is crucial to constantly review your records and eradicate any redundant, duplicate, or inaccurate information.
Email marketing can be daunting, and if your team is not equipped to do it in-house, you may want to consider hiring an outside professional. Consider leveraging the skills of a freelance administrative assistant, data analyst, or writer who can help you get your contacts organized and segmented and start producing targeted email messaging.
There are many freelancing sites you can explore to find a professional writer for your email marketing writing needs. This can give you an edge by ensuring you are using quality data to produce effective marketing materials.
#2. Keeps contacts secure and up-to-date
A lack of customer information like demographics, psychographics, and other critical data will cause you to waste your money targeting people who might not be interested in your particular product or service. There is a wealth of data available, but this almost means you need to be strategic and safe with your data.
Digital marketers should emphasize customer and buyer personas that represent the company’s ideal clients. Personas allow marketers to understand customer preferences and reveal the common pain points of their user base. This information can be used to give customers what they want, but you shouldn’t sell customer data or use it for other unethical functions.
Like any data handling, your email marketing should be secure and targeted. Use your client information ethically and effectively, and focus on the customer’s experience. Accurate data is vital for your non-marketing activities too. You will need to maintain up-to-date contact information for things like making sure that refunds reach the right place and that financial data is accurate to avoid fraud or error.
#3. Helps you reach more people
Leveraging quality data ensures you spend your marketing budget on communicating to the intended audience at the right time. It may not seem like the sexiest way to market, but email is an important part of any marketing budget if you want to reach the average computer user.
Quality data provides valuable insights that you can leverage to enhance the planning and performance of your marketing campaigns. Only by leveraging up-to-date, accurate information that has been adequately segmented, targeted, and analyzed, can you build a robust email marketing plan to reach as many potential leads as possible.
According to the online marketer, Alexander Williams of Hosting Data, email marketing services remain the most effective tool to reach out to customers in today’s world.
“Email marketing is incredibly cost-effective, with potentially massive returns on investment,” says Williams. “The Digital Marketing Association estimates an average 4300% ROI for US businesses. There are minimal start-up costs. It’s increasing in usage. And you have direct contact with your customers, with lots of flexibility in how you craft your message.”
#4. Helps you reach the right people
Not every person in your email database will have the same needs and concerns. Different people respond better to different email marketing messages, and topical relevance is critical.
It is worthwhile to cluster your contact database by segmenting records according to specific standards. For instance, you can separate contacts according to an individual’s job title, industry, or the stages they are in the buyer journey. When you analyze your customer data with relevant metrics, it helps you be specific about who the audience is so you can deliver better-targeted email campaigns.
With your database segmented, you can use email marketing triggers to send out automated email marketing messages that are well-suited to a specific group’s needs. Whether emails, mail, or phone calls, customers are more likely to interact and engage with content that is relevant to them. This will help you acquire more quality leads and achieve a higher ROI.
#5. Improves customer relationships
You want to foster satisfaction and a strong rapport with your customer base, and quality data lets you get to know your subscribers so you can understand and meet their needs. Email marketing is not simply the online form of cold-calling – you also want to maintain existing relationships this way. This is especially if you are trying to rebuild customer trust after an incident, such as a data breach or a complaint.
Pay attention to who is responding to what type of messaging. If you don’t do your research, at the end of building a social media campaign, you may discover that customers better respond to phone calls or email. The same goes for customer service. Different age groups in particular may want to interface with your staff differently to address their queries.
And when answering questions or addressing complaints, it is imperative that your customer feels heard. Just as you tailor your advertising to segmented groups, you should target your customer service to satisfy different concerns.
The bottom line is, you need to be vigilant about maintaining data quality to maximize the effectiveness of your email marketing. Be sure to validate, update, and segment your contact information like postal addresses, email addresses, names, and phone numbers.
With quality and accurate data and proper analytics, you can reach out to your prospective and existing customers with relevant messages that interest them. Data quality is not negotiable, and it is a critical part of any effective email marketing strategy if you want people to respond to your messaging.
Guest author: Nahla Davies is a software developer and tech writer. Before devoting her work full time to technical writing, she managed — among other intriguing things — to serve as a lead programmer at an Inc. 5,000 experiential branding organization whose clients include Samsung, Time Warner, Netflix, and Sony.