The value of Christmas cards

christmas tree

Every year when autumn comes the assistants of the sales department get a little nervous. They know what will happen in short term. It’s almost Christmas and the selections of contacts to receive a Christmas card have to be made.

Every year it’s the same. First the selections for every account manager are made and they will have to check manually if these are correct. This year will be the same as ever, which means that:

  • relevant companies and contacts are missing
  • new companies and contact persons will be added
  • contact persons will be deleted
  • contact persons will be transferred to their new company
  • addresses appear to be not up-to-date Continue reading ‘The value of Christmas cards’

ING: Customer Information is Power


ING is looking to make more use of its customer data for behavioural targeting. The financial services company has seen a five-fold in customer contacts in the past few years (think of Internet banking). They also have a lot of information on each customer through they payment transactions they do. If the customer would allow ING to use this information the bank could analyst the energy, phone and other bill and deliver specific offers together with other companies.

The ING PR department rushed to tone-down the debate by saying that this is only a possible scenario. A flood of data privacy concerns would be connected to initiatives like these.

The ING idea is thought provoking. How much does you bank know about your and the companies you do business with? How would they be able to use this and could it be of benefit to you?

Who are my customers?

For marketeers it is a daily struggle. Where are my customers, what do they like, how can I reach them? Building a single view of the customer requires knowing a fair bit about them.

Ideally you want to know more then the data points your organisation is able to collect like address, order history and phone number (and please let those be accurate). What would really help effective marketing is to know your customer’s contact preferences, social demographics, financial health, social network, employment, daily commute, etc. etc.

Keeping your data accurate with people moving, dying and changing jobs all the time is difficult enough as it is. Keeping abreast of your customers social data seems virually impossible. Has anyone experimented with collecting social network data to do this?