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11 Data Migration Strategy Tips For Marketers

by Simon Spyer on Sep 11, 2014 7:27:00 AM

Mitigate the risks of your data migration strategy with these 11 tips.

With the marketing technology landscape changing at an unprecedented rate, it is likely that all marketers will at some point have to change or broaden their technology in order to meet their marketing objectives.

This could involve simple changes to email service providers right through to wholesale data warehousing projects, the creation of a single customer view or business intelligence solution.

Whatever the scale of the project, there are 11 tips that marketers should ignore at their peril.

11 Data Migration Strategy Tips For Marketers

#1 Get Your Data Quality Right Before You Migrate

The old adage of sh*t in, sh*t out is right. Understand your data quality and fix any issues before you migrate your data.

#2 Report Pre & Post Migration

Create standard reports before you migrate and then replicate them after migration. This will give you confidence that you have a like-for-like view of marketing performance. Or not. 

#3 Parallel Run

It's foolhardy to expect everything to migrate and work perfectly. Allow for some parallel running of systems even if this means that you incur some additional costs from your incumbent supplier.

Data Zen: Download our free eBook to discover how to move from Data to Decisions

#4 Add Contingency

As well as allowing for a parallel run, plan on some contingency for both resources and deadlines.

#5 There Always A Cost To Change

Build the case and budget carefully. Budget for tweaks and enhancements and be pragmatic about the benefits your migration will deliver.

Beware the the costs to change could be somewhat hidden - often resource costs (training; lead times for staff to adapt to new tools) are the most overlooked.

#6 Think Process

Any migration is likely to involve a change to your marketing process. Plan for this rather so you don't have to invent something sub optimal once you have migrated.

#7 Think People

The marketing skills that you need are rapdily changing. Consider the skillsets that you will need to leverage your new solution.

#8 Don't Try To Do Everything At Once 

If at all possible try to contain your efforts - perhaps focus on one product area or customer segment - and test that the solution is working before you cut all your marketing activities over.

#9 Focus on customer impacts

A great way to prioritise your efforts, your plan and your testing is to focus on customer experience. If your actions are going to negatively impact experience then it's worth pausing and finding an alternative.

#10 Work Agile

Regular readers will know that we bang on about an Agile (with a capital A) approach to project management. It really is the only way to manage a project in a modern marketing plan. 

#11 Document Your Business Rules 

Last but by no means least, meticulously document your existing business rules. It will make the process of setting up your new system dramatically easier.

Data Zen: Download our free eBook to discover how to move from Data to Decisions

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This post was written by Simon Spyer

Co-founder & Insight Partner at Conduit, professional insight-monger, dad, lover of all sport and Spurs.

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