• April 1, 2004
  • By David Myron, Editorial Director, CRM and Speech Technology magazines and SmartCustomerService.com

BPO Editor's Note: Open Your Eyes to the Possibilities

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Is your company flying blind or using meaningful customer insight to compete? It is all too easy for organizations to fly blind if they don't update their customer data. Imagine, for example, that a hip, young woman moves to another home and, because her favorite clothing retailer still has her old address, her targeted marketing campaigns go to a retired military man who moved into her old home. The marketing materials are wasted and the woman isn't made aware of new promotions that might encourage her to buy more clothes. Situations like this can be avoided with a little help from knowledge services specialists. And with the high cost of dirty data becoming increasingly apparent, companies are turning to outsourced data specialists like Acxiom, Experian, Harte-Hanks, and infoUSA. "When Quality Counts" (page 6) reveals how companies are improving their data quality and CRM results by working with knowledge services outsourcers. Some of these data cleansers are also helping small companies comply with privacy regulations by making available lists of consumers who have signed up for the national do-not-call registry. "Clean and Compliant" (page 4) discusses how companies like Acxiom and Automatic Data Processing are partnering to help retail automotive dealers comply with privacy laws. Do-not-call and antispam legislation is making it tougher to reach new customers and stay in touch with existing customers. Some analysts expect consumer privacy issues will get even more complicated, with possible do-not-contact legislation and customer opt-in lists that circumvent existing HIPAA regulations, enabling pharmaceutical vendors to send targeted marketing materials to those who wish to be informed of new medicines. With so many compliance issues and a general desire for clean data, it's not surprising that companies are throwing away their blindfolds and turning to knowledge services companies for help. David Myron, Executive Editor, can be reached at dmyron@destinationCRM.com
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