You Know Your Database Needs Refreshing When ...
New Promotions Are Implemented
A reoccurring problem with marketing databases is executing testing outside of the database without a plan to capture relevant learning for future use. Pilot programs, when successful, can roll out very quickly, and it is imperative that the selection and segmentation plans, model scores, promotional codes, and response information get appropriately connected to the database.
New Channels Are Utilized
Along with new promotions, capturing marketing data across all channels becomes critical in evaluating future marketing communications to prospects and donors. Gone are the days where a donor is exclusively considered an online giver or a direct-mail respondent. The interplay of these two channels, along with any others available, create opportunities for better-tuned contact strategies.
New Users Have Access
As database marketing becomes even more important to nonprofit organizations and fundraisers, new users will inevitably line up for access. A marketing database needs to support different levels of users with either more granular or rolled-up data. This effort presents tough choices on how to deliver the data to the users and often warrants an evaluation of what is really valuable.
Finally, your database could need refreshing when it starts to look like the closet in the basement that you're afraid to open. Getting old, useless data out of your database is as important as getting new data in. Many marketers over-indulge on available data without knowing its predictive or descriptive value. Having an understanding of which data is not only valuable but also actually used in marketing decisions is a hurdle that is emotionally tough to get over when there is so much data available. By doing so, however, your database can stay current and flexible to adapt with changing marketing demands.
Keeping your database fresh needs to be native to the way marketing is done, not an afterthought on a "to-do" list that never takes priority. A small investment in planning up front is the best way to ensure that data is ready to drive your marketing program.