In the interconnected world of B2B selling today, data is the driving force behind any competent sales team. Those who have worked in sales before know that data is the lifeblood of the organization and dictates how and when prospects or customers should be approached. Keeping a clean and accurate pool of data will lead to informed and productive customer interactions. Improper data entry, on the other hand, can lead to frustrating and awkward conversations:
“This is the wrong number, they don’t work in this department.”
“You guys called me yesterday.”
“Wasn’t the meeting scheduled for next week?”
“I already told you last time that we weren’t planning on renewing.”
Whether you’re selling an office product, business resource, or technical service, data entry is pivotal. Duplicate or insufficient information is extraordinarily costly. In 2016, IBM determined that inaccurate data took $3.1 trillion from the US economy that year.
Data helps us know where and how to invest our resources, but because those resources are limited, it can be tempting to make shortcuts as we manage increasingly large and daunting amounts of data. What steps can we take to minimize errors in data entry like duplicates, inaccuracies, or duds?
Always Verify for Accuracy
When presented with a new set of data, one of the first steps to take is to verify how accurate the data is in your database. One of the most common examples of inaccurate data includes duplicate record entries. Duplicates can not only lead to obnoxious or amateurish customer interactions, but could also potentially cost thousands of dollars to correct. These duplicates are usually due to errors in the bi-directional syncing process of the various platforms in your sales team’s technology stack.
Orphaned records are another frequent result of improper data management. The cause of this issue is often simply forgetfulness; in the rush to get to the next call or email, for example, a rep may accidentally disregard an important detail like a phone number, email address, or even a name. Missing fields and records can harm customer relationships when reps are forced to ask again for information that was already given, or worse, neglect to follow-up on a viable prospect at all.
Clean Up Current Data
It is extremely important for teams to be working from a unified set of contacts and the data therein.
The cleaning process typically begins with eliminating any duplicates and synthesizing that information into one profile. Make sure all information is up to date, especially contact information. Identify the most crucial pieces of data, so that you can hunt down any that might be missing.
Something as small as a misspelling can make accurate data entry and lookup nearly impossible, so taking the time to clean up current data has huge ramifications. Just like it’s easier to find the necessities after you clean house, it’s easier to find what you need to conduct business once you clean up your current data.
Rely on a Single Source of Truth and Automate
The best solution to these data issues lies in automation and a single source of truth. Entering data manually is never fun for anyone, even if it is essential. But you want to limit the need for busy work as much as possible. Taking the time to set-up automation can dramatically increase both the quality and quantity of your data by removing human forgetfulness and error from the equation. Additionally, by eliminating bi-directional data syncs and consolidating to a single source of truth for your data, your CRM, you can be sure that your data is accurate and reliable.
With a truly native Sales Engagement Platform like Conquer Cadence that lives inside the Salesforce CRM, there is no bi-directional data sync required: record updates and stage changes are automatically made and logged to Salesforce after each customer interaction or touchpoint. This enables your sales reps to spend their time on what they actually want to do, selling, instead of tedious, manual data entry.
You want to make sure the data that you have gives you a cohesive, “360 degree view” of the customer in order to use that data to its full potential. This means that your data will likely come from a myriad of sources and communication channels in order to get a more complete understanding of the customer at hand. By consolidating these channels and data entry to a single place, Conquer Cadence, you will gain a reliable platform for your sales team to have the most informed and productive conversations.
Interested in learning more about how a truly native SEP can keep your data accurate and your sales organization efficient? Book some time with our team here and let’s explore how Conquer can best help your sales needs.