Back-Test Your Way into a Customer Contact Strategy

Multichannel marketers have long faced the challenges of customer contact management. In the absence of setting up a test plan on the front end, with adequate database assets you can back-test many potential contact strategies on the back end.

For example, you may wonder, “What is the value of a customer with an e-mail address versus a customer without?”

While you may not be able to test the true incremental value of your e-mail campaigns, you can compare the results based on customers within similar segments who have an e-mail address on file and those who don’t.

Depending on your database resources, you can pull a snapshot of your database to view customers with and without valid e-mail addresses. You will then split those two groups, at a customer number level, and view past results throughout a specified time period (not necessarily tied to specific campaigns).

Ideally you should set up a test on the front end and carefully control the testing parameters. But carefully using the results and other data assets you already have available may help steer what you test in the future and how you set up those tests.

Ultimately, it all boils down to the management of your most important resource – your data.

Jerrell Lewis is a marketing manager with catalog consultancy Lenser.

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