10 Signs Your Buyer Data is Causing Problems for Sales & Marketing

Leadspace customer data platform

Recognizing signs that your customer data is causing problems for your sales and marketing teams and addressing them quickly is crucial for maintaining effective operations and achieving business goals with data-driven decision making. It all starts with high-quality data. Personalized campaigns, territory planning, lead routing, lead prioritization, cross sell/up sell, analysis, reporting, and the implementation of AI models all rely on having accurate, up-to-date customer data. Unfortunately, unifying your first-party data with numerous siloed, static third-party databases, and then pushing it into your CRM and marketing automation platforms for a single source of truth that sales and marketing teams can operationalize is a complex, cumbersome process. It’s also a process that’s especially prone to errors. Let’s look at some telltale signs that you’re experiencing critical errors in your customer data environment and explore steps you can take to mitigate them. 

Here are some key indicators that your customer data environment is creating problems for your sales and marketing teams:

1. Inaccurate Targeting and Campaigns

When your targeting efforts and campaigns suffer from inaccuracies, it will be evident through poor campaign performance and higher unsubscribe rates. Low engagement rates, poor conversion rates, and high bounce rates in marketing campaigns indicate that your targeting may be off. If a significant number of recipients are unsubscribing from your communications, it could be due to irrelevant or poorly targeted messages – which results when sales and marketing teams are operating off of data that doesn’t provide them with a comprehensive view of your customers.

2. Low Sales Efficiency and Effectiveness

Take notice when your sales reps are spending an excessive amount of time on data corrections and searching for accurate contact information rather than selling. Frequent reports of missed follow-ups or interactions with outdated contacts suggest your buyer data issues are leading to missed opportunities. Declined sales efficiency is a major indicator that your buyer data environment is in trouble. 

3. Buyer Dissatisfaction

Customers expressing frustration over incorrect information or repeated calls/emails about irrelevant products or services. Rising customer churn rates without a clear reason might be due to poor data quality affecting customer interactions. Frequent complaints and an increase in churn is a sign that the buyer data in your CRM is likely not sufficient for maintaining strong customer relationships.

4. Inconsistent Buyer Information

Conflicting information about the same customer in different systems or records. Multiple entries for the same customer leading to confusion and inefficiencies in communication and service. Seeing discrepancies between 2 or more of your data sources and instances of duplicate records indicate that your data hygiene is not optimal. You need a way to effectively de-dupe your buyer data and resolve your buyer data inconsistencies.

5. Poor Personalization and Engagement

Lack of personalization and low engagement levels mean that you’re struggling to understand your buyer. To truly personalize the right content to the right person from the right company at the right time, you need a true 360-degree view of your buyer. Your data may be incomplete, inaccurate, or simply outdated if your marketing messages fail to resonate due to generic content and lack of personalization based on customer data. Similarly, low open and click-through rates on personalized communications might indicate that the personalization is not based on accurate data.

6. Inefficiencies in Data Management

If you encounter high data maintenance costs and constantly need to perform manual data corrections, then your data can’t keep up and is not being managed efficiently. Significant resources spent on data cleaning and updating due to updating errors and inaccuracies, and frequent instances of sales and marketing teams needing to manually correct or update customer data are signs that your buyer data is stagnant/out-dated.

7. Difficulty in Measuring ROI and Performance

Tracking performance is critical to optimizing your sales and marketing strategies. Reports and analytics that don’t reflect reality make it difficult to measure the effectiveness of campaigns and strategies. Keep an eye out for any difficulty in tracking key performance indicators (KPIs) accurately that trace back to your data quality issues.

8. Regulatory Compliance Risks

Compliance Issues and security breaches become more likely when your buyer data is not properly owned and maintained. Difficulties in adhering to data protection regulations like GDPR or CCPA due to inaccurate or incomplete customer data means you have compliance issues. Experiencing increased risk of data breaches and security issues can result from poorly managed customer data.

9. Ineffective Customer Relationship Management (CRM)

If your sales and marketing teams are reluctant to use the CRM system due to unreliable or cumbersome data, you have a CRM adoption problem. You might also be experiencing a fragmented customer view if you’re unable to get a unified view of a customer due to fragmented and inconsistent data across different systems. CRM Adoption Problems and Fragmented Customer Views can result from incomplete, inaccurate or out-dated buyer data in your CRM environment. These issues become extremely problematic when it comes to tracking buyer journeys and performing highly personalized outreach.

10. Leads Being Routed to Wrong Reps.

Time kills all deals – when you’re finding that your reps are assigned the wrong lead, time and effort is wasted to various degrees as they pursue the wrong lead until the mistake has been realized. Additionally, switching reps part way through outreach can cause confusion, miscommunication and poor reporting for that lead’s sales cycle. Furthermore, marketing can’t get credit for a lead until they successfully route the lead. Your data could be generally inaccurate or messy, or it hasn’t been updated to reflect any mergers, acquisitions, job changes, etc that define the territory they currently exist in. Whatever the case, if you’re experiencing such routing errors, you’re likely suffering from problems with company data that goes into your territories and routing process.

How do we address the issues in our buyer data environment?

Some basic steps you can take include:

  • Performing regular data audits. Conduct scheduled audits to identify and rectify inaccuracies and inconsistencies across the buyer data in all of your systems.
  • Establishing a system for data governance. Establish robust data governance policies to standardize data entry and maintenance processes.
  • Implementing training and awareness programs. Train sales and marketing teams on the importance of accurate data entry and maintenance.
  • Apply advanced analytics. Use advanced analytics and machine learning to identify patterns and anomalies in customer data, enabling proactive data management.
  • Collecting and evaluating customer feedback. Regularly solicit feedback from customers to ensure their data is accurate and up-to-date.

However, if we want to address the problems at their core, we need a comprehensive buyer data solution to achieve:

  • Dynamic buyer data. Implement automated data cleansing processes to regularly update and remove outdated information across your buyer profiles and across systems. The problem is that databases from most vendors are static. They reveal the data at that specific moment in time, then expect us to manually amend it with new data constantly. This is a serious point of pain for sales and marketers.
  • Synchronization and integration across systems. Beyond outdated buyer data, sales and marketing generally work off of different siloed data without a single source of truth. Marketing might send a lead to sales, only for sales to see in their system that the lead doesn’t seem to match their ICP and put it on the backburner, not realizing that the marketing team’s data shows a strong match to their ICP. Look for a solution that ensures you have a seamless integration and synchronization between different systems (CRM, ABM, marketing automation platform) to maintain data consistency. The right solution for you will have a strong Identity Resolution framework with cross signal analysis to ensure all of the data across your systems is mapped to the correct record/buyer profile and is checked for accuracy.
  • Hierarchy mapping. Can you look at a company’s profile in your system, then click your way through to that company’s global ultimate, subsidiaries, divisions, employees or buying groups? Do you know who people report to? The parent/child relationships in their corporate family? Can you identify who the decision-makers, influencers and end-users are? Most sales and marketing teams can’t easily determine any of those invaluable insights because they don’t have hierarchies effectively mapped across their TAM within their CRM and marketing automation systems. That’s unfortunate because understanding hierarchies across your buyer data can provide several significant benefits, especially in enhancing business operations, customer relationships and strategic decision-making. An efficient CRM is a sign of a healthy buyer data environment.

By addressing these signs and implementing best practices for data management, you can significantly improve the efficiency and effectiveness of your sales and marketing efforts. Achieving such a feat will require an AI-driven system for resolving buyer identities across numerous static databases and aggregating all of that data to build robust buyer profiles that automatically update as the source data changes. One solution worth considering is, of course, Leadspace. 

Leadspace is your comprehensive B2B buyer data solution. Unlike standard data providers, Leadspace is not a static database. Leadspace ingests all of your existing first-party data, enriches it with 30+ embedded third-party B2B sources and unifies it all, automatically creating dynamic buyer profiles for people and companies with full hierarchies. Each of our 200+ fields cross-reference multiple sources to populate the most accurate and up-to-date values, and can be scheduled to automatically update as people and companies change, ensuring you’re relying on the most up-to-date, operationalizable buyer data available. Our direct integrations with Salesforce, Microsoft Dynamics, Salesloft, Marketo, Eloqua and Hubspot ensure you have all the firmographics, technographics, intent and hierarchy data you need synchronized and at your fingertips. For other systems we offer our API to enable almost unlimited options. We do all of this with our best-in-class (according to Forrester) Identity Resolution framework for mapping data to the correct buyer profiles and connecting them all together with hierarchies. Say goodbye to messy, stagnant, siloed data – fill in the blanks and clean up your customer data environment with Leadspace to give your sales and marketing teams the tools they need to effectively pursue closeable business.
If you’re experiencing any of these issues within your organization, schedule a meeting with us and we’ll walk you through the solution!

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