5. Let your customers know what you are doing with their data.
What we do today on the Web can be tracked, and is tracked, by major advertising and consumer companies wanting a few vital seconds of your interest. When a company like Facebook or Google can surmise from tracking data that you are a native Texan living in California and might be interested in beekeeping, then they can provide information from various advertisers who consider that niche a valuable part of their market. To ordinary people, that’s often just creepy.
B2B marketing is no different. Individuals who make the decisions to purchase your product for their companies need to know how their individual data is being used. Making sure that they know you are collecting data is important.
For businesses, privacy laws have been less robust than for individuals. Most laws governing privacy concentrate on respecting the privacy of the person. But even businesses have limits for privacy-invading email practices. Businesses can be cited for violations of privacy acts if they send unsolicited advertising-oriented emails in violation of the CAN-SPAM Act.
6. Use your customer data
“Use it or lose it.” This quote from Henry Ford was about money, but it could just as well apply to data. Since data deteriorates rapidly, you need to know what you will do with the data before you capture it.
In smaller businesses, using data for sales and marketing may not seem as important as using data to manage transactions. But let’s look at some very practical first uses of a sales and marketing database.
7. Evaluate your progress quarterly – just as you do financials
Most good businesspeople know that measuring your business is a requirement. Where and what you measure, however, are important and highly dependent on what data you collect. All solid businesses measure revenue and growth, but here measuring response to marketing, cycle time from lead identification to close, and overall sales pipeline are also important to a healthy business.