Whether a long-time member or new to the Abacus Alliance, these tips will help you get the most from being part of the cooperative.
- Be willing to share. Share your plans, schedules, drop dates and results. Share the audiences you want to reach and the offers you plan to lead with. Basically, help us to help you. By understanding your objectives, we can develop solutions that support them. We can bring our experience across hundreds of campaigns to propose new ideas to test. We can ensure the right models are used and, by understanding your results, we can optimise your targeting to improve your campaigns. Ultimately, it will benefit you.
- Provide regular updates... Having your most recent data results in better modeling, better targeting and more effective campaigns. With the forthcoming GDPR, it also means your suppressions will be up to date. By being up to date, we can build your models in advance, saving time. Regular updates give us time to see what is happening with your customer base. How is it changing? How is it growing? What could these changes mean going forward?
To comply with the GDPR in 2018, we will require members to supply monthly updates. Talk with your Account Manager or our Database Services Team about setting up a regular schedule of full monthly updates. Consider automating the process, if possible, so everything becomes seamless.
- ...and consistent layouts. Regular data supplies are only effective if your structure remains constant. Having to reinterpret data loads each time removes the benefits of providing frequent updates and makes more work for you (and us). Consistency means efficiency. By keeping it the same and you don’t have to worry and can use the saved time to concentrate on more pressing matters. Familiarise yourself with our Data Supply Guide which is designed to help provide consistency of data supply and structure.
- Let us know what data you have. How do you manage your data? How do you structure it? How can it be supplied? What data are you supplying? The more we understand your data, the better we can manage and handle it. If you have a data dictionary, share it with us. This will avoid any misinterpretations our side. We will know which records to include and, equally important, which to exclude. This all improves the quality of your modelling. It also avoids skewing results which can happen if, for example, we have not suppressed what we should have.
Inform us of any systems changes. Moving to new systems brings efficiencies but can lead to discrepancies. Data can be dropped and formats change. To minimise any disruption around your data on the Abacus Alliance, let us know of any impending systems changes. We can then work with you to manage the process.
Test, test, test. It’s been the direct marketing mantra for decades - and still rings true. Testing brings learning. And it’s campaign learnings that help you find new ways to grow your business. Be clear on what you want to prove out. Is it about growth? Profitability? Consolidation? Ensure you take the long-term view to learn what works and what doesn’t and then optimise your activity.
Talk to us. And not just your Account Manager. Don’t forget there is a team working behind them for you. With experts in database services, modelling and analytics, get to know them. Importantly, get the right people in your company to speak with them. Building better relationships builds better results. It can also speed things up, avoid Chinese whispers, resolve issues, overcome confusion and make things much smoother.
Finally, remember – we’re a data cooperative, not a data business. It’s the collective sum of the Abacus Alliance that makes it powerful and different. Take advantage of all we offer in terms of services and freebies (Annual Trends Report, GDPR Guidance, Insights events) so the Abacus Alliance works for you. It may sound hackneyed but work with us as a partner. Those members that get the best from the Alliance are those that bring us in early, share with us and use our solutions to drive activity across prospecting and retention.