Five Tips to Overcome the Mobile Data Capture Dilemma

By David Senior, EMEA Sector Director – Retail for MyCustomer

When it comes to customer contact and marketing data, people usually keep such precious information within databases managed by digital messaging and marketing platforms. More often than not, they’re dealing with more than a couple of fields of information and can in fact be faced with trying to find, and consequently use, hundreds of thousands of pieces of data at once. For example, for customer services purposes, one may need to ensure a text message goes out to a large number of customers about the arrival of their packages on one particular morning via a mobile messaging system.

Now, there are many issues you should consider when it comes to database accuracy and consistency, but the one that stands out is the quality and input of the data. Mobile communications are now naturally part of the customer experience, therefore it’s imperative to focus on collecting the right information in the correct format. Just like there are best practice tips for email or delivery address data capture, mobile data capture should be done correctly too.

When it comes to mobile data capture, process can be a wonderful thing. Below are top tips on how to create a process to ensure a more agile approach to your mobile engagement efforts.

  • Identify how data is captured and its requirements: You will have different data accuracy requirements according to how data is collected – this can be through manual staff or automated input. In the case of manual input, you will need to make sure your team knows what the very specifics of your data needs are. A number of people will be using the system, so make sure they know how to use it correctly. Best practice documents will help streamline data capture ensuring that staff knows how to input country numbers correctly. This may also include an element of training in store staff and customer service reps to correctly ask for numbers and information. Additionally, you should ensure that an immediate confirmation SMS is received by the customer, so that you can verify a phone number.
  • Use clever technology platforms: Automated input can come from a number of sources including the information captured through customer opt in systems. To ensure the accuracy of data capture and fields, clever technology can help. Specifically, a dedicated mobile engagement platform can flag if the numbers put in are incorrect – this helps to avoid mistakes. These platforms can also help you to dynamically drive messages to your customers by linking to your content management system (CMS) or customer relationship management (CRM) tools to tailor the individual’s experience and ensure customer-centric communication. This also helps to ensure that customer contact information in your CRM system does not become outdated.
  • Consider integration with your call centre: Integrating your call centre with mobile engagement platforms will help your call centre staff to ask for the correct information and store it in a platform you can also access. This has many benefits including the advantage of being able to better meet your customers’ needs via improved communication.
  • Consider the browser: There are functionalities embedded in your browser that may automatically help you resolve issues with data, especially country and phone number data. Browsers are often specifically engineered to identify country codes based on language or number patterns. Therefore it is often easier to get country code lists and more accurate numbers by working in the browser.
  • Let the customer sign up: In addition to collecting the numbers online, in-store or through other means that may involve human error, think of ways in which consumers can opt in by sending an SMS to one of your short codes. This will ensure a 100% correct accurate data capture.

These are just a few ideas as to how to improve your data capture processes. It’s important to consider integration of your customer services and engagement systems so that you not only capture accurate data, but ultimately are able to better serve the customer with tailored communications.