Data Driven: New Customers ... Now What?
The role of data within customer acquisition involves capturing and maintaining a record of the person or business that made a purchase. The basic information includes 1) who made the purchase, 2) when that purchase occurred, 3) what media channel the order was placed through and 4) the value of the purchase. Beyond the basics, there is a wealth of intelligence that can add value to customer acquisition programs. Above all, this record needs to be easily accessible for analysis in a query environment.
Basic Information to Capture
The data record for a customer—either a person or a business—includes both names and addresses. On the B-to-B side, there are additional layers that make customer data more complex, like key person fields and multiple location addresses. The date of purchase must be captured, along with the media channel. The media channel that gets credit for the order channel is usually determined by the "last touch" or the media that was recorded just prior to the order being placed.
Each record is assigned a customer number by the order management system, and this number is critical to all future intelligence around the customer.
Two other fields that are common in today's world are an "opt-out" field—requests not to receive marketing messages—and an email address.
A basic customer record would have fields such as:
- Company name
- Key contact
- Customer number
- Address (street, city, state, ZIP code)
- Opt-out status
Additional Data to Support Advanced Marketing Strategies
Each individual brand has unique needs, so it follows that there's no single blueprint for additional data fields. Phone numbers, shipping addresses, gifting activity and a broad range of flags that indicate kinds of purchasing behavior may be needed.
The most interesting additional intelligence for a customer record is the marketing/promotional source that drove the sale. The rules to determine the promotional source of any given order are hammered out over time with much effort, and also vary with each brand. Once that process is in place, it's possible to understand costs for different media channels.