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What Information Is in Your Database?
by Barbara Lewis MBA and Dan Otto MBA

Centurion Consulting Group recommends using databases which can provide a wealth of information to assist you in allocating your marketing resources. Unfortunately, many firms don’t track the data and/or don’t recognize the value of the data.

Referral Sources and Prospects

Take, for example, a firm with 1,000 names in their database. Over 98% of the names are clients with very few prospective clients or referral sources in the database. Yet, the prospects and referral names should be receiving newsletters, invitations to seminars, etc., not just the clients.

Industry

By tracking industry affiliation, you can easily determine the percentage of names in a specific industry. When we analyzed the database of one of our law firms, we determined that 30% of the clients were in post production and that percentage was increasing by 25% per year during the past three years. The firm had no idea that post production was fast becoming a "specialty" area for them. They began to market to post production companies.

When you track the industry of a referral source, you can identify the industry source for referrals. For example, you may discover that 75% of referrals are from CPAs. In that case, you want to focus on marketing to CPAs.

Revenues and Employees

By tracking the revenue of your clients and the number of people they employ, you’ll be able to segment your largest clients. This information will help you target these clients for additional services. Generally, larger companies need more services.

Action Step:

With Microsoft’s Access capabilities, you can easily develop a database to track information about your clients, prospects and referral sources. This data will help you in allocating resources for future business development. You’ll be able to target specific industries or specific size of clients.

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