“Decisions are only as good as the quality of the data upon which they are based,” BlueConic COO Cory Munchbach recently wrote in a Forbes Business Council guest post.
Cory doesn’t just mean data (specifically, first-party data) must be complete, accurate, consented, and updated in real time for companies to mitigate risk, engage customers a more intelligent manner, and realize better marketing and business outcomes.
She also means organizations must maintain strong data hygiene through ongoing data cleansing (i.e., updating and/or deleting customers’ profiles) to ensure all business technology users can access the most relevant, timely, and useful first-party data.
(As well as to ensure they don’t waste their time utilizing dated or ‘dirty’ data.)
No company should arbitrarily delete key customer data sets to avoid overage costs from their database vendor or because they think that data isn’t valuable to the business.
But that’s not to say there isn’t value in proactively identifying ‘bad’ data that needlessly takes up space in your database — and, by turns, the attention of your growth-focused teams: from marketing and customer experience (CX) to analytics and digital product.
Thankfully for BlueConic customers, ensuring (only) actionable, high-quality data is available to teams is a task they can accomplish with ease using our customer data platform (CDP).
How BlueConic helps automate profile clean-up to ensure strong data hygiene
Many companies with our customer data platform have experienced this issue before:
- A person who engaged often with the business falls off the map, so to speak, and ceases buying from and interacting with the organization online and offline.
- In turn, the customer lifetime value (CLV) and recency, frequency, and monetary value (RFM) scores for this individual decrease in their persistent BlueConic profile.
- This decline in engagement also automatically triggers BlueConic segment adjustments (e.g., the customer drops out of a ‘Highly Engaged Shoppers’ segment).
Despite how common this scenario is for companies with our CDP, some keep the profiles and associated data for disengaged customers like this in their BlueConic tenants.
Multiply this occurrence by several thousand (or, worse, hundreds of thousands or even millions), and these companies can end up with a considerable amount of useless data.
BlueConic customers can ensure strong data hygiene — and remove unprofitable, unnecessary data for dormant prospects and customers — by automating profile clean-up.
More specifically, they can reduce the amount of this kind of data in their BlueConic tenants by expunging profiles for individuals who, based on their lack of engagement over an extended period, are deemed unlikely to buy again.
- Let’s say you’re a retailer with BlueConic. A former customer hasn’t visited your website, opened any of your emails, clicked any of your ads, opened your mobile app, or bought from you online or offline in, say, 200 days.
- The churn-propensity score generated in AI Workbench indicates the customer in question is unlikely to buy again. Thus, their profile is an ideal candidate to remove entirely from BlueConic until they potentially engage again down the line, during which a new profile will be created for them.
- A rule can be set up for this 200-day threshold (or whatever ‘inactive’ timeframe your analytics team deems appropriate based on past shopper attrition data) so profiles such as this are automatically eliminated from BlueConic.
This means teams that use our CDP daily don’t have to worry about manually updating or deleting profiles for idle prospects and customers. It can be achieved in a streamlined, automated fashion, giving each team time back in their day for more important tasks.
One retailer that uses BlueConic identified and purged more than 200,000 inactive profiles.
This erasure meant the company’s growth teams could confidently utilize their data and not have to worry about engaging individuals with little or no likelihood of conversion.
Nor did they waste precious person-hours purging profiles one at a time.
Instead, these growth teams can turn their attention to repeat customers — ones they can focus on retaining, upsell and cross-sell across channels, and build loyalty with over time.
Purging profiles like these certainly isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach.
Companies in other industries like publishing and financial services undoubtedly will want to set up clean-up rules that closest align to when their average customer churns, which may be a shorter or longer period than the 200-day example above.
The point is this big-data cleansing approach benefits all businesses with BlueConic.
Why carefully labeling ‘listeners’ and segments in BlueConic is a must
Customer profile clean-up is certainly an important task for companies with BlueConic. But it’s just one half of the data hygiene coin. There’s also the tenant management side.
For instance, many BlueConic customers set up dozens (or even hundreds) of listeners: a powerful data-collection feature that informs them of their audience’s behavior, interests, and other attributes in a privacy-centric, consent-focused manner.
Data collected via listeners is added to each customer’s profile in real time, in turn informing which segments an individual is added to or removed from based on their engagement.
But without a consistent listener-labeling method, it can be difficult for many technology users to discern what data a given listener collects or how it affects certain segments.
The same goes for segments that include listener data.
Fail to label each clearly, and it can be hard for growth teams and technical users (e.g., data scientists) to distinguish them (i.e., identify high-value audiences quickly and efficiently).
That’s why it’s vital to be concise yet descriptive with your listener and segment naming conventions: so each technology user knows what purpose each one serves.
For listeners, in particular, it’s better to simply turn ones you don’t currently find useful off in BlueConic than delete them outright assuming they’re not helping your growth teams’ segmentation, analysis, modeling, and/or activation efforts.
After all, there may be a team or technology user who utilizes it in some way.
It’s best to establish the appropriate nomenclature for your listeners and segments (not to mention only create listeners and segments all relevant stakeholders agree will prove beneficial and are worth setting up) upon BlueConic implementation.
But, even if you don’t, it’s never too late to adjust your approach.
Abiding by data hygiene best practices: The key to effective CDP utilization
Unified profiles provide BlueConic customers with the most comprehensive and up-to-date record of what they know about their customers. It’s the proxy for the individual person.
The higher quality the data in each profile, the more capable each growth-focused team is of better understanding and engaging with the right audiences (i.e., engaged individuals who are likely to buy soon) and delivering bespoke experiences to each of them.
With profile clean-up automated and a clearly defined strategy around listeners and segments in place, these teams can rest easy, knowing they have not just actionable, clean data, but also the most relevant, timely data they need to execute in their day-to-day, enhance their operational efficiency, and help them accelerate business growth.
Schedule a demo with the BlueConic team today to discover how unified first-party data in our persistent customer profiles can help your company’s growth-focused teams thrive.