Data hygiene best practices

Everything you ever wanted to know about data enrichment

We’ve all been cleaning out our closets and attics this month, and our spring cleaning is almost done – or is it?

In our last three articles, we went over the ins and outs of data hygiene, how to make your data more actionable, and what you stand to gain from clean data (and where to start!). We know that clean data means continuously sifting through to find and eliminate errors or duplicates. It is verified by trusted third party sources routinely to ensure continual accuracy on multiple fronts.

We know, too, that clean data creates actionable data. If you can trust that your list of leads only includes people who want to be on that list and will receive your message, you can trust the open rates of your emails. If you trust your open rate, you can make plans for future campaigns to leverage successes.

By this point, you know that you need to:

  • Set up your system to routinely detect and eliminate errors
  • Standardize your data
  • Find duplicate entries and check to prevent new ones
  • Keep your data up-to-date
  • Talk to a data specialist about your organization’s specific needs and challenges1

Now that you have data hygiene best practices in place, you may notice there are a lot of holes. You might have an address, but no email. So now we’ll talk about data enrichment. Data enrichment can increase your audience reach, strengthen your omnichannel campaigns, and provide personalized messaging.

What is data enrichment?

Let’s say you’ve been sending mailers to a segment of your audience for ten years, and you assume that, because a steady portion of this list responds directly to mailers, that the list is vital and active. Then you start implementing data hygiene best practices, and it becomes clear that some of your best clients have stopped responding to their mailers, and new additions to your list are less likely to respond to mailers than before.

It’s time for a new approach, and you need the data to help make that move. Do you have their emails? Do you know the portion of this list that routinely converts from ads on social media? Do you know what stage of life they’re in so you can speak to their ever changing needs?

Data enrichment pairs your current information with trusted third party information to fill in the gaps in the picture of each individual customer, audience member, or lead.

Data enrichment increases your audience reach

Connect contact information

Data enrichment adds contact information. If you have a mailing address, adding email addresses provides a huge bump to your email marketing campaign reach, and new ways of retargeting audiences after they open your email.

Data Axle offers consumer data to help with appending contact information like this. Even just adding an email means you have one more touchpoint for each customer or lead. Email marketing isn’t dead– in fact, email marketing campaigns see higher click through rates and higher conversion rates than social media.2 Our database offers a huge breadth of data–we have more than 250 million currently marketable business and consumer email addresses that connect with our historical database of more than 1 billion email addresses to append to your first-party records. This approach will amplify your campaign’s reach and significantly improve your onboarding rates.

Data enrichment strengthens your omnichannel campaigns

Omnichannel campaigns work by “touching” each prospective customer all throughout their day. At breakfast they see an ad before a video on youtube. At their work computer they get an email with an offer relevant to recent company discussions. They take their car in for an oil change and your ad plays on the tv in the waiting room. They come home and a mailer gives them more information about the topic. That’s one campaign that uses at least four channels: email, social media, ctv and direct mail.

For omnichannel campaigns to work, though, your data must be clean so you know, for sure, where you can reach people at different points in their day.

Connect their personal and business lives

So your data needs to help you navigate your customer’s entwined worlds. People work from home or have small start-ups gaining ground from their living room.

With something like Data Axle’s B2C Link, you can bridge the divide between personal and professional. If you’re offering brands for personal use, would you market your product or service differently to a CEO versus a Creative Director? Or, if you’re looking for a conversation about a company wide tech option, would it help to send critical decision makers mailers at their home office? With information on each individual’s professional lives, you can make better decisions about where and how to send messages.

This means that not only does your data need to connect the customer’s business and personal lives, it needs to know who they are on disparate devices and in shifting locations.

Understand their transactions

Transactional data can help understand what works for each individual, and understand those preferences at scale. Transactional data shows you 1.5 billion monthly transactions, over 250 product categories, and $2 trillion in annual discretionary spend so you can call up information about what your customers actually buy, where they buy it, and how often they buy it. You can also find out what other brands your customers are buying from, so you can assess what works about your competitor’s strategies. Use this data to understand purchasing recency, frequency, value, and transaction channels to fine-tune your messaging and offers.

Provide personalized messaging

See the whole person

With attributes, you can gain a 360° perspective of your customer. Attributes allow you to connect with audiences based not just on their email or mailing address, but based on what matters to them.

We compile attributes using hundreds of sources, including real estate, tax assessments, voter registrations, utility connections, bill processors and more, giving businesses the ability to build marketing campaigns based on hundreds of data attributes that are updated in real-time. You can segment your audience by age, household income, interests, hobbies– even whether they have children in the household, or pets.

With that kind of information, your messaging can be highly personalized and specific. You can target niche audiences–thus expanding your reach and increasing your campaigns engagement. Your discounts can be specific and actionable. Instead of getting a coupon for a product your customer never touches, you can send them a coupon for a product they already love–but in your brand.

Enriching your data is the final piece of the data hygiene puzzle

Enriching your data allows you to fill in the gaps with email or mailing addresses you didn’t have, thus expanding your reach and strengthening your omnichannel campaigns. You can connect to your audience at home or at work, using a product or tool such as B2C Link. You know where your customers convert by adding in transactional data. And with attributes, you can understand what really matters to each person, so that you can personalize your messages to speak directly to what they care about.

Data Axle can help with your unique challenges and goals. Ask us how today.


Natasia Langfelder
Content Marketing Manager

As Content Marketing Manager, Natasia is responsible for helping strategize, produce and execute Data Axle's content. With a passion for writing and an enthusiasm for data management and technology, Natasia creates content that is designed to deliver nuggets of wisdom to help brands and individuals elevate their data governance policies. A native New Yorker, when Natasia is not at work she can be found enjoying New York’s food scene, at one of NYC’s many museums, or at one of the city’s many parks with her two teacup yorkies.