Once upon a time there was a company that made special kinds of products that were sold to special kinds of companies. This company made lots of sales each year, and each sale was worth a lot of money. One day, their GoldMine consultant was trying to help them work out some better ways to use their GoldMine. The consultant and the people from the company started talking about lead management. The company had a very simple lead management process. They advertised in lots of important magazines, and waited for people response cards to come in. Then, the company would send every response their beautiful, expensive brochure. It cost the company lots of money, but they didn’t care because they were selling lots of products.
The GoldMine consultant asked them how they managed things like bad addresses and returned mail. They said the company had a whole pile of envelopes that had been returned by the post office. One day they were going to put that information into their database, but not today! The consultant asked about duplicate names. The company said that it happened sometimes, but they thought it was really important to send their brochures out right away to show they really cared. The consultant was a little bothered by this, but the company didn’t seem to mind the money they were throwing away. Then, from the back of the room, a little voice said “What about those guys in prison?”. Well, you can imagine everybody’s reaction! The consultant said “What guys in prison???”. And the little voice (that belonged to the girl who saw to it that all the brochures went out) explained: “We get a lot of cards from guys in prison. A lot of the magazines we advertise in are free, so they fill out the cards so they can get mail. I guess they’re lonely…”.
After talking with all the important people at the company, the consultant found out that they wasted more than twenty thousand dollars every year, sending their nice brochures to prisoners and lots of other bored people in the world. Best of all, almost twenty percent of what they sent out were duplicates! So, as you can see, even a simple lead management process can benefit from some common sense database practices!