5 steps to a better quality data strategy using Microsoft Dynamics CRM

An effective data quality strategy is essential for any company hoping to maximise its CRM investment. Microsoft Dynamics CRM can assist in such a strategy when users follow these five simple steps:

Step 1 – Get the basics right

It’s a well known adage that your CRM is only as good as the data that you put into it. You should ensure that all staff know how to deal with data entry correctly.

Create a CRM data plan for all departments that covers rules and standards surrounding the input of customer information such as company names, job titles, URLs and more. Microsoft Dynamics can enforce these rules, automatically banning the entry of ‘bad data’ if it doesn’t comply with pre-set parameters. Couple this data plan rollout with CRM training for staff while ensuring you have a strategy in place to identify incomplete records. This will ensure you take the first step towards creating a successful data quality strategy.

Key Points:

  • Draw up a data plan that staff can access and understand.
  • Use Microsoft Dynamics to enforce the rules surrounding ‘bad data’ entries.
  • Train all staff, including technical staff, in the platform’s functionality.

Step 2 – Manage your data correctly

Ensure your data remains fit for purpose or run the risk of losing your grip on your data quality strategy.

You don’t need to manually clean data or rely on third party tools to do the job – Microsoft Dynamics’ data cleansing technology offers a host of features that do just that. Use its duplicate detection rules and bulk deletion jobs to purge unwanted entries while guaranteeing your data’s long term quality via automated maintenance schedules. Identify records that require user verification annually or queue those entries that require immediate verification.

Key Points:

  • Exploit CRM’s ability to help maintain your data in the long term.
  • Use automated data cleaning functions to purge duplications and other erroneous entries.
  • Create custom workflows that can identify and highlight entries in need of urgent attention.

Step 3 – Harmonise your channels

Ensure that all your real world and online channels are brought together into an omni-channel.

Unify all your channels using Microsoft Dynamics – from online and mobile to in-store and even in-store customer tracking – so you have a single source of consistent real-time unified data that will leave any Salesforce automation and contact management tools in its wake. This will open up your data quality strategy to effective and manageable exploitation day and night, from marketing automation through to social media listening.

Key Points:

  • Bring all your channels and their data together into a single platform.
  • View the accrued data in real-time or historically, quickly and efficiently.
  • Exploit the resulting quality data via a host of powerful CRM-based tools.

Step 4 – Automate your data strategy wherever possible

Ditch time and resource consuming admin tasks and allow departments such as Sales to focus on what they do best.

Use Microsoft Dynamics’ automated functions to help various departments’ working lives. For instance, ensure lead tracking and reminders are fully automated so Sales can strike at the right time as potential customers move through their buying journey. Combine this lead tracking ability with Dynamics’ call scripting save option. Once a lead has been highlighted as ready by your CRM, Sales can pull up the relevant script in a moment and reach out to that prospect immediately.

Key Points:

  • Banish admin ‘busywork’ by allowing CRM to take the strain.
  • Setup automated lead reminders and fully exploit lead tracking.
  • Save call scripts so they can be accessed in seconds.

Step 5 – Tailor content to each and every customer

Analysing data will help create segmented targeting and improve your data quality strategy, increasing opportunities for content personalisation and tailored offerings.

Microsoft Dynamics allows you to drill down into customer touchpoints whether they be in-store or online and in real-time or historical. The resulting data can be used to increase cross-sell and up-sell opportunities and draw up inbound marketing content. Dynamics can ensure content is delivered at the right time, on the right platform and critically, to the right target. What is more, it can create tailored offerings, the successes or failures of which can be monitored and acted upon, and generate automated lists of lapsed customers to potentially reconnect with by using the right targeted offer.

Microsoft Dynamics can help you to:

  • Monitor and track every customer touchpoint.
  • Exploit reporting features to uncover different customer segments.
  • Boost sales opportunities for up- and cross-selling.
  • Create content and offerings that resonate with the right people at the right time


  • Draw up a data plan to maximise the potential of your CRM platform
  • Banish bad data by scheduling regular data cleaning and maintenance
  • Bring your channels together using CRM to make their accrued data meaningful and manageable.
  • Automate resource-sapping ‘busywork’ so departments can get on with their jobs.
  • Create tailored inbound marketing content, bespoke offers and more using your CRM platform.

Find out more about how to harness the power in your data and increase customer loyalty and profitability by downloading the eGuide: “The Ultimate Guide to: Using CRM for data driven marketing success”.