Boring concept. Big payoff.

Last month we posted about the importance of database maintenance — with some guidelines on effective data management. We made the point that most companies realize they need to segment their target market, but “segmentation” goes beyond just identifying the type of companies you want to target. Not flashy, but pretty darn important.

Shortly after we posted our commentary, we came across a cool report by ITSMA and the good folks at* that details the lead generation best practices of high performing companies. The report is full of great strategies and tactics you can employ to generate more leads and get a higher return on your marketing investments.

Among other things, the report found that the highest performing companies take segmentation a few steps further to figure out the title of the decision maker(s) for their services, and the names of those individuals at each company.

This finding is in complete alignment with our experience.

We’ve really seen those additional steps make a tangible difference in direct marketing campaigns. We worked with a client who was skeptical about investing the time and budget to research the names of individuals at their target list of companies. Like many firms, they thought they had a pretty clean list already. But, they were willing to test the scrubbing process. So we divided their list in half. On one half we called to update contact names. The other half we used “as-is”.

The “scrubbed” list produced 2.5 times more appointments (qualified leads), and the total cost per appointment was 50% lower, even with the added cost of scrubbing the list!

So, yeah, we scrubbed the rest of their database before embarking on their year-long lead generation program.

This is just one highlight of what can be found in this great study. Click here to find out how you can get access to the full report.

* Lead Generation Benchmark Report: How the Best Firms Fill the Pipeline, 2010 ITSMA &