Monday, 16 May 2011

Why Data Cleansing is So Important

Keeping databases cleansed so that they contain the most accurate and up to date records has always been important. Whilst it may be a labour intensive process the rewards make it wholly worthwhile, adding significant value to your marketing efforts and the understanding of your customers, or potential customers.

Data cleansing is about more than good housekeeping, removing duplicate or obsolete data and correcting inaccurate information. In today’s climate of data protection and financial pressure on marketing budgets the necessity for cleansed and accurate information is greater than ever. Here are just some of the important reasons to ensure your data is sufficiently cleansed.

Benefits of Data Cleansing:

• There are myriad financial benefits to cleansing your databases, not only will such activities stop you wasting money on storing old or obsolete data, but the improved accuracy can result in greater return on investment for your marketing activities.
• This greater accuracy in terms assists in your target profiling, meaning that your marketing campaigns will be more focussed, relevant and subsequently more likely to be successful. Understandably, using obsolete data for your targeting activities will only lead to misdirected campaigns.
• Storing old information can actually harm your brand image and customer perception. For instance, if you are consistently sending marketing literature to old addresses, customers that may have died or opted out of receiving promotional material, your efforts are actually helping to create a wider negative image, rather than return on investment.
• In modern business the Data Protection Act should always be a consideration, particularly in regards to the storage of personal information, where failure to cleanse can actually result in non-compliance. Subsequently, cleansing activities are necessary to eliminate any chances of breaching the Data Protection Act and hence any financial penalties.
• Finally, improving the quality of you data results in improved customer insight and adds considerable value to your marketing efforts by improving ROI.

These are just some of the reasons to undertake data cleansing, however, as a business it should be remembered that the process is ongoing, databases require practically constant management and cleansing to ensure they contain, up to date, accurate and valuable information.

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Project Kaisei - Clearing the North Pacific

Project KaiseiThis is a little bit of a change to norm for the EWA blog but we have been asked by our fellow WPP agency Cohn & Wolfe to help by posting some information on Project Kaisei, an important initiative to stop the growing problem of plastic debris in the North Pacific.

Project Kaisei is a non-profit ocean clean-up initiative with a mission to stop the growing Plastic Vortex. The Plastic Vortex, otherwise known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, is a huge accumulation of plastic debris in the North Pacific Gyre, containing large pieces of plastic and other rubbish.

This is a severe problem; previously referred to as the 8th continent and floating roughly one thousand miles off California’s coast, this plastic patch was estimated to be twice the size of Texas and growing.

Each year the Project Kaisei ship sets sail to research the Plastic Vortex and increase understanding of marine debris, its impact on our ocean environment and how we can introduce solutions for both prevention and cleanup. $2.7 million will be required to help cover the costs of the next voyage.

To help raise funds for the voyage, Cohn & Wolfe and Project Kaisei have created a 30 day campaign centred on a streaming video of Kai (pronounced Kī), a small goldfish involved in an epic battle against plastic pollution.

Via a 24-hour webcam consumers can follow Kai’s plight, living in an aquarium filled with plastic material, representing the Plastic Vortex. To “Save Kai” and remove plastic from his castle in the sea, participants can make donations via Facebook in as little as £5 increments from now through just after World Ocean’s Day on June 10.

As donations increase, the plastic debris in the aquarium decreases, creating a safe and plastic-free environment for Kai to enjoy. All proceeds from the campaign will go toward helping Project Kaisei fund scientific research and clean up expeditions.