Data Cleaning

It's all about the data!

The key to a successful direct marketing campaign is having clean and accurate data so that it gets delivered to the right person at the right address and that they only receive your message once and not 6 letters all at once.

If you spell their name and address incorrectly you're not getting off to a good start either!

BBS can take your existing data and clean it against Royal Mail's UK database called PAF to ensure that your addresses are postally correct. By having your addresses in a consistent format with all the postally required fields such as the Postal Town and Postcode it's much more likely to be delivered to the correct address. It also enables us to find duplicate records and match against other data sets for profiling and suppression of goneaways etc.

Why BBS for your data cleaning?

It's a really good question so please bear with us whilst we explain some of the important elements of the data world.

Not all PAF’s are equal and BBS have spent in excess of 30 years honing our skills and continue to try and perfect our matching routines so that we can get the highest possible hit rate without compromising accuracy.

Unlike a lot of automated services BBS have a process where our operators check every part of the process for quality issues and this often reveals local problems and known abbreviations with addresses that an automated process wouldn’t recognise.

After our initial automatic data cleaning process we are always left with a residue of addresses that couldn’t be repaired due to lack of information or it wasn’t safe to allow the computer to make an assumption.

So BBS have one of the largest manual postcoding bureaus in the country where our skilled operators can take these failed records and correct them against Royal Mail’s database thereby ensuring the highest possible hit rate for your data.

The art of deduplication

BBS also have spent many years building complex algorithms to find duplicate records in data and this has almost become an art form.

It’s really important that once you have your data cleaned it's deduplicated. The rules can change on a case by case basis and so we will probably have some questions for you about what is a duplicate record…..Is it one per household or do you need each individual in a household?

Additional data cleansing available

In addition to our standard data cleaning processes we can offer these extra optional services on request.

We can screen against various external files and where we get a match we can either suppress the record from your mailing or alternatively flag the record so that it can be returned to you and flagged on your own database as a do not mail and the reason why.

Supression matching normally uses the following external files

  • National Change of Address Update(NCOA) (supplies new address)
  • National Change of Address Suppression(NCOA)
  • GAS The Goneaway Suppression File
  • The Deceased File
  • The Bereavement Register
  • Mortascreen
  • Mailing Preference Service (MPS)

Call our sales team for more details 01829 270714

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