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Most B2B marketing database records do not include key data fields that can help with lead segmentation—fields such as industry type, annual revenue, and number of employees—according to a recent report from NetProspex.

The analysis of over 61 million database records found that B2B marketers usually capture the email addresses (89.2% of records included), first names (77.5%), last names (76.9%), and company info (77.2%) of leads.

However, most do not ask for additional information, such as a prospect's phone number (only 36.2% of records included it), industry area (25.9%), company size (19.5%), and annual revenue (18.2%).

Below, additional key findings from the report, which was based on an analysis of the marketing/CRM databases of a range of large and small B2B organizations.

Database Scores

NetProspex gave the combined B2B marketing databases a 1 (risky) to 5 (optimal) score in each of four "best-practice" areas: record duplication, email deliverability, phone connectability, and record completeness. Those scores were as follows.

Record Completeness (2.7): Because many B2B marketing databases lack data that is key for segmentation (such as industry info, number of employees, etc.), the average score was 2.7 (unreliable).

That is up slightly from a score of 2.5 in the 2013 edition of the study, which means that marketers are doing a marginally better job of collecting complete data records.

Record Duplication (4.2): The average score for record duplication was 4.2 (functional)—for the second year in a row the highest score among the four areas examined.

Marketers from organizations of all sizes seem to be doing a good job of weeding out duplicate records, perhaps in part thanks to the increased use of marketing automation software.

Email Deliverability (3.1): NetProspex gave B2B marketers score of 3.1 (questionable) for email deliverability, indicating that many databases contain a sizable number of outdated/incorrect email addresses.

The email deliverability score was up from 2.8 in last year's study.

Phone Connectability (3.4): Marketing databases received an average score of 3.4 (questionable) for phone connectability (i.e., whether the collected phone numbers are valid or inaccurate).

That was up from last year's score of 1.2, in large part because the researchers changed their definition of what constitutes a confirmed phone number.

About the research: The report was based on an analysis of over 61 million records found in the databases of B2B marketers.

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image of Ayaz Nanji

Ayaz Nanji is a digital strategist and a co-founder of ICW Media, a marketing agency specializing in content and social media services for tech firms. He is also a research writer for MarketingProfs. He has worked for Google/YouTube, the Travel Channel, AOL, and the New York Times.

LinkedIn: Ayaz Nanji

Twitter: @ayaznanji