5 Ways to Make your Data More Useful Through Data Appending

Posted by Steve Rao On November 13, 2017




On the ACT standardized test, an incomplete or incorrect answer is better than none at all. When it comes to data, the same principle applies: incomplete data is better than no data at all.

That’s because the power of appending can help you get the most out of your data.

(Note: This article is part of the "Agricultural Business" series. Click here  to read the free guide.)

We all have those records in our CRMs that only have a name and maybe a city and state. We want to fill out those records with addresses, emails, purchasing behaviors, and more. But finding that missing information takes hours upon hours of tedious research – and often it’s hard to guarantee your research has turned up accurate information.

Fortunately, data appending services make filling out incomplete records easy and effective, giving you reliable data pulled from a variety of sources.

If you’re looking to get the most out of your data, here are some ways that data appending can help you.

1. Find elusive contact info

We live in a world where people are harder and harder to contact. People are changing their email addresses regularly. While street addresses are a matter of public record, identifying the correct address based on a name can be unreliable (especially if the person you’re looking for is named John Smith). And a lot of addresses have incorrect phone numbers listed with them – if at all.

And these are just the traditional ways to contact people. In the digital age, people are increasingly becoming mobile-only with their phones. Social media is a growing way of communication – especially when it comes to tools like Facebook Messenger and LinkedIn InMail.

This contact info is elusive. Data appending can help you find that info so you can get in touch with potential customers.

Whether you’re emailing or calling directly, or using that data to build targeted audiences for digital ads, use data appending to find out the best ways to contact your prospects and customers.


2. Add niche-specific info

As markets become increasingly focused and niche, the kind of data you need to be successful is going to be harder to find. But with the right data appending service, you can add niche-specific data right alongside your general information on growers.

For example, if you’re a tire company looking to find farmers whose tires are nearing the end of their life, you could append automotive data to know when they purchased their vehicles, and estimate when the best time to reach out to them with a special offer or deal will be.

Data appending makes it possible to have that information quickly, so you’re spending your time building strategy, marketing and selling – not doing endless hours of research.

3. Identify related records

Your database could be filled with thousands of grower records, but you’d have no idea whether any of these farmers know each other. You could have the contact info for entire communities of related growers and not even know it.

Sometimes, you can infer which growers are related to whom, based on location and whether they have the same last name, but you can’t infer how they’re related to each other. But with data appending, you can find out.

See the common relationships among the farmers so you can build a holistic, strategic plan for your marketing and sales efforts.


4. Access up-to-date records

The world is moving faster every day, so the data you have in one moment is going to be outdated the next. Even in the slow-paced world of agriculture, data still has a shelf life, and you can be relying on years-old data to make business decisions.

Data appending helps you keep all your records up to date.

Whether you’re looking for crop info, grower behavior, or a reliable phone and email address, use data appending to always have the most reliable data at the time you need it.


5. Access historic data

Even though data becomes less reliable over time, that doesn’t mean old data is irrelevant. In fact, historic data has incredible value, because it helps you put your current data into historic perspective.

Data tells you very little when it’s taken out of the context of the larger trend. Thus, having historic data going back as far as possible will help you best understand how your data stacks against previous years’ results.


If you’re wondering whether your farm data is doing you any good, check out our Guide to Evaluating Agri-Data to see where you stand, and if you need to invest in appending or verification services.


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