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DM Professionals boost revenue with Data Enhancement offer

Posted by Brian Berg Google+


Data enhancement is gaining ground as a popular product add-on to letter shops, direct mail printers, direct agencies, mailing list brokers, and specialized marketing firms working with businesses who serve direct mail advertisers.  Data enhancement involves appending elemental data (demographic, behavioral, or firmographic) to an existing database of names and addresses.  This existing database of names and addresses is typically an internal customer file provided by the business seeking further segmentation analysis.  Ideally, after database enhancement, the file can be divided into segments for more targeted mailing.


Data Enhancement Example


Let's consider a popular multi-location bank.  The existing customer database includes information such as name and address, average checking account balance and if they have an auto loan with the bank.  Other transactional information included within the banks database might include if they have a mortgage, credit card, and revolving equity line of credit. The bank could schedule mailings to all it's customers that include a "menu" of financial services in hopes of earning more business from it's existing customers.  Or better yet, the bank could consider database enhancement, segment those customers based on age, income, household composition, child age, etc.  Doing so would allow them to mail more specific offers to the same customers.  If we knew that 40% of their database included lower income renters, there would be a different set of financial services to be offered than homeowners with the same or higher income level. 


In this example, the bank would offer the appropriate financial services to only those customers which might response, thus mailing less, cutting direct mail cost, and increasing their DM ROI. Experts agree that direct mail is best used to provide information and offers to existing customers.  But after performing a number of test mailings to the various internal customer segments created from a simple database enhancement, the bank will learn which segments might be ideal for finding new customers by segmenting the non-customer population within their market footprint.


The Database Enhancement Process


The database enhancement process has come along way over the last 10 years as the digital age continues to make advances.  All that is really needed is a list of names and addresses in a digital format.  The internal database is bumped up against a larger database that contains all the names and addresses (and data elements for enhancement).  Where there is a match on the names and addresses, the elemental data is then copied to the internal customer database.  This enhanced database is then sorted by the various elements such that patterns can be drawn, and target mailing decisions can be made. Offering this process to your mailer customers is both profitable and builds loyalty. 


Mail customers who benefit from such as process in the way of increase response will surely increase your odds of keeping that customer for future mailing. If you would like to learn more about how to incorporate database enhancement to your service line, visit BB Direct online or call us at (866) 501-6273.