Data validation products have clear financial benefits for customers, ranging from delivery accuracy, fraud prevention, compliance and more. Aside from the financial and operational benefits, there are some intangible ones as well.
This case study demonstrates how Service Objects helped an industry-leading Customer Experience software provider soothe the all-too-common frustrations between Marketing and Sales that that were driven by ongoing issues with poor quality lead data. Let’s take a look at how Lead Validation not only improved their lead data but also the relationship and productivity between the teams.
Our client, whose identity we will keep proprietary, had a problem: distrust between their Marketing and Sales teams. Like most Marketing teams, a big part of their job involved generating leads for their Sales team – in their case, using a mix of purchased and demand generation leads. Unfortunately, both sources had a high percentage of bad data – perhaps as much as 20% to 30% – and in any case enough to really frustrate their best salespeople, who were spending too much time processing dead-end leads and not enough time with the good ones.
These bad leads weren’t just the common typos or address changes – many of them were intentionally fake entries, with names such as Mickey Mouse or Homer Simpson, phone numbers that were a string of fives and more. Worse, these problems were cropping up across the board, with both international and domestic leads. Since these leads were going directly into their marketing automation platform and CRM, the company was also incurring per-lead data charges for these bad leads.
Sometimes bad leads ironically come from good Marketing: for example, offering valuable information or other “Marketing goodies” to potential prospects can encourage fraud, typically from people who want the benefits without engaging with Sales. The company’s existing approach of ensuring that each lead's email address was valid wasn’t adequately addressing the problem. Which is where we came in.
This company’s solution ultimately involved deploying Service Objects’ DOTS Lead Validation - International. This service validates and cross-checks all aspects of a lead to yield quantitative quality and confidence scores, enabling businesses to quickly identify bogus leads and ensure data accuracy. Our client modified their business process to use Lead Validation - International to validate each lead as a legitimate, contactable person – and coupled our authenticity score with their intent scoring criteria to help move prospects through their sales funnel.
This was a phased implementation, where they started by validating and scoring emails first, later validating phone numbers, and then eventually began verifying and scoring the leads as a whole. Criteria was established for moving leads into the sales funnel, setting them aside for long-term nurture campaigns, or rejecting them outright based on quantitative criteria. In addition, this validation was performed upstream before entering this data into Marketo, their marketing automation platform, to reduce per-lead charges due to bad data.
As this client expanded the use of Lead Validation - International to the entire contact record, they discovered that they had increasing lead quality levels, a difference that was noted and appreciated by the client’s sales team, as their time could be better focused on quality leads and opportunities. Ultimately, this was a successful intervention that helped both teams collaborate and work together better.
This case study was a good example of how data quality goes far beyond simple ROI. Maintaining a smooth workflow was critical for team productivity, morale and turnover – getting two good teams to trust each other and work together was their main objective.
In this case, the intrinsic benefits of having accurate, contactable leads at the point of data entry more than justified their implementation of Lead Validation - International – to the point where they not only gladly renewed, but also expanded the services to two new incoming divisions added through acquisition. We are proud to be a key part of their teams improved relations and performance.