The 2 Core Foundations of an Effective Data Management Strategy

Focusing on two core data management foundations, which can be carried out routinely, will help you unlock insights that can drive the right business decisions.

It’s no secret that companies often use data externally for contextual communications (see ‘What is Data-Driven Marketing?’) as well as internally to trigger operational processes. In both cases, it provides analytical insights to drive decision-making and strategic planning.

This could include:

  • using personalisation tokens in emails or website content to show personalised content to contacts based on the property values held against their record
  • using smart content in emails or website modules to display different versions of your content to the viewer based on predefined rules 
  • creating a task for a sales person to follow up with a lead once they’ve been updated to ‘Marketing Qualified’ 
  • reporting on the main source of closed revenue from the last quarter

As a result, effective data management is more important than ever. If your data isn’t accurate, it isn’t useful. Data that isn’t routinely cleaned can actually have negative impacts. 

In this article, learn how to recognise if your data could be better managed, the two key foundations to your data management strategy, and the impacts of poor data management.

For more information on collecting, analysing, and drawing actionable insights from your company data, don’t miss our beginner’s ebook, ‘From Data to Insight to Action’.

About me:

I’ve spent the past four years implementing HubSpot CRM in over 15 businesses across various industries, inclusive of Education, Non-Profit, Telecommunications and Hospitality. In my role as a HubSpot CRM platform consultant, I work with clients on HubSpot implementation, integration and migration projects, designing strategies and solutions to meet their unique requirements. A big part of this involves exploring how HubSpot technology can be configured to solve business problems, integrate with other systems, create new efficiencies, and, yes, improve data management across the platform.


Your data might not be managed effectively if…

It isn’t always immediately obvious if your data isn’t being managed effectively. You might feel like you’ve got it nailed, but consider whether that’s true for one snapshot in time (which could quickly unravel as your business grows) or whether you’ve future-proofed your strategy to be fit-for-purpose in the longer-term.

There are warning signs you can look out for to determine how successfully your organisation is achieving this. Your data might not be managed effectively if

…you have siloed data

One of the biggest data management challenges businesses face is breaking down siloed databases and aligning their internal teams. 

Storing data in different databases causes disparate data sources and often duplicated, conflicting information. It is difficult to identify and consolidate the data and as such slows down data-driven decisions and processes.

Integrating systems or amalgamating into one single source of truth is the ideal solution to resolving data silos and aligning all the data held within a business.

…you’re drowning in data

While data is power in the world of business, the more you have the more you have to manage.

With large volumes of data the key to achieving this is outlining what the data is used for, who needs it and why, and is it fit for purpose. 

Putting processes in place to archive or delete data that is no longer required helps to keep your database as compact as it can be. 

Did you know…

HubSpot has a de-duplication tool, which uses AI to match up records that look similar and make it easy for you to merge them together. Say, for example, there are two contacts in your database with the same first and last name but they have slightly different email addresses. In this case, you could remove the address that bounces and combine the two records. 


The commercial impacts of poor data management

Poor quality, inaccurate data can impact all areas of a business. Think ineffective marketing, lost sales opportunities, poor service delivery and inefficient operations — all the things business leaders and their teams work tirelessly every day to try and fix. 

The way you manage your data is also important because of data governance policies. These policies exist to ensure businesses remain compliant with legal data protection requirements and they hinge on your organisation managing its data responsibly.

The global standard for legal data protection is the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) For those operating within areas covered by GDPR, it requires that you document the lawful basis for processing a person’s data. It also requires that you adhere to requests for a copy of all the personal data held about them or deleting it altogether, if asked to.

The cost of not remaining compliant can be a big fine, and loss of reputation, for your business.

Related read: How to Clean Your CRM Data in 7 Simple Steps

Get started with these two key areas of data management

In my opinion as one of BabelQuest’s HubSpot CRM platform consultants, the two parts of data accuracy that most affect your ability to utilise your database are format and content.

  1. Format — is the data being held in the correct format? Should it be text, a number, a date, capitalised names, DD/MM/YY, or a valid email address format?
  2. Content — is the data content accurate and up-to-date?

Whether you’re looking to tidy your existing database, you’ve recently assumed ownership of a legacy database, or you’re setting up a new database, routinely managing these two elements form the foundation to a data management strategy that will adapt with your business and help you to get the most out of your data going forward. 

So if a clean and tidy database revolves around format and content, what does poor data management look like, and how could your business be impacted?

Learn more about choosing the right data categories for your needs.

How routinely are you managing your data?

Effective management of data allows for a clearer understanding of customer behaviour and trends. It helps businesses to make informed decisions and enhance processes. 

Specifically, it helps minimise the potential for inaccuracy or noncompliance in your database by establishing processes that address the data management challenges a business faces.

By routinely blocking out time for your data administrator to focus on data management you can be confident that your data remains accurate, secure and compliant and your business remains productive and operational.

Learn more about data management in our beginner's guide, From Data to Insight to Action — click the image below to download your copy now.

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