Halting B2B Data Decay with Social Media Intelligence

Overcoming a Major Challenge Faced by B2B Marketers

The Relentless Movement of US Workforce – from One Employer to Another

Here are some startling facts regarding the relentless flux and churn in US workforce. On average, according to a 2015 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Survey, people born during the latter years of baby-boom generation, held on average 11.7 jobs from age 18 to 48. Employment continuity, in new jobs taken, as one grows older, is alarmingly low. Of the total new jobs started by 40 to 48 year olds, 32 percent ended in less than a year.

What is noteworthy in this survey, is that the churn is high across all genders, age-groups, geographies, and industries. Even older workers, it appear are constantly on the move, from job to job.

Data Decay Drags B2B Marketing Efficiency & Performance

This constant movement of business executives – from one employer to another – degrades the quality of marketing and sales databases. Every day the information in your Salesforce, Marketo, Hubspot database is becoming obsolete. Some business contacts have moved to another company.

This data decay creates significant challenges for Business-to-Business (B2B) marketers. Because of this data obsolescence, quality of B2B CRM and Marketing Automation databases degrades over time. Critical data elements - phone, address, email address, company name, and job title –become obsolete. More than 2-to-3 percent of data can degrade every month because of employment changes. In other words, in a year, almost a third of the information in the database can become obsolete.

As a result, existing customers and prospects often are not reachable. This impacts all outbound marketing channels: email, telemarketing, and direct mail. B2B Data quality is the key to successful B2B marketing. This is true for all types of B2B marketing campaigns: webinar registrations, conference recruitment, magazine subscriber acquisition, sales lead generation, association member recruitment, and others.

Existing Data Quality Services Do Not Fix Data Decay

All B2B marketers know about this problem. Yet it not uncommon to run into campaigns with 30 to 40 percent inaccurate records. Why is that? If quality is so critical, why not fix the data quality?

The main reason – and the dirty little secret – is that existing data quality tools and services do not fix the data decay problem. These tools can fix data hygiene issues such as duplicate records, incomplete records, address field errors, etc. But services such as NCOA database lookups, Reverse Number Lookups, or Business Information Services cannot fix B2B data decay. These big databases themselves suffer from data decay. Also since these databases house millions of records the extent of obsolescence in these databases is often even higher than in your own database.

Use Social Media Intelligence to Fix Data Decay

So is there no way out? Fortunately, with the widespread adoption of LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, and other social media networks there is a way out.

Today when people change jobs and move to another company the first thing they do is update their profiles on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. So one way to fix the B2B data obsolescence problem is to use this self-reported current information in social media. This data can be used to your Salesforce, Marketo, Hubspot, and other marketing databases up-to-date. Remember, when people change jobs, move to another region, get fired, start a company – often the first thing they do is update their social media profiles.

Tracking changes on Social Media for millions of users is not easy to do. Social Networks have created barriers to prevent harvesting of this data. But there are ways to circumvent these hurdles while remaining compliant with the social media networks policies. Lester is one of the few service providers with such a solution.

Bottom line, leverage Social Media to reverse the data decay challenge.

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