Data can tell powerful stories and can enable an organization to produce amazing results, but only if the right data is captured at the right time. If that doesn’t happen, the results wane and the stories become lackluster.

Quality in equals quality out

If one of the objectives of an organization is to have a powerful marketing engine that will enable them to reach their customer base and increase sales by some percentage, then the ability to identify, segment, and create personalized messaging for those customers is paramount. However, all too often the “front-line” systems that are the first (and sometimes only) opportunity to acquire critical information about customers do not capture the necessary quality of data — or don’t truly capture anything at all.

There is an adage that states “garbage-in equals garbage-out”. That may sound a bit harsh, so perhaps a more optimistic way of interpreting it would be “quality-in equals quality-out”. It is important that your point-of-sale, e-commerce, lodging, activity, and other systems capture the detailed contact information that will help meet marketing objectives from the very beginning, not just the objectives of sales and revenue. This helps improve the contactability quotient of your customer base and subsequently improves the quality and quantity of your marketing reach. In turn, it will provide customers with more meaningful engagement and increase customer retention.

How to capture the right data

There are several ways to capture this type of critical marketing information. One example would be incentivizing customers to provide that data by offering a discount coupon or code for an upcoming purchase, whether it is in-person at a sales point, online during a purchase checkout, or even an online signup form not related to a purchase. Another example could be allowing customers to enter a drawing for bigger savings or an additional product.

There certainly can be challenges when it comes to capturing data from in-person customers, especially if you have a high-volume, high-turnaround ticket window process. As you develop ways to incentivize customers to provide information that will improve engagement and your marketing as a whole, you may also be able to incentivize your staff to “sell” the customer on the benefits of providing that information. If your team can demonstrate how access to customer data will in turn create a better customer-to-brand relationship and a more personalized, authentic shopping experience, customers may be more inclined to share that information with you. Of course, keep in mind that you can’t force your customers to tell you anything if they don’t want to.

Put simply, the objective is to let your customers know that the information they share with you is a gateway into being part of the company family rather than being another unknown name to be insincerely marketed to.

Putting data into action

If you can strategically execute your marketing objectives by enhancing the front-line systems that capture customer data, your bottom line will thank you. At Ascent360, our data-driven marketing platform is built to ingest the data being captured with every POS or e-commerce sale and clean it to create customer “golden records”. With this ability at your fingertips, you can easily segment customers based on purchase behavior and send personalized 1:1 messages at scale to engage those customers and keep them coming back time and again. To see our platform in action, request a demo below.

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