UK tour operator, Leger Holidays increases the efficiency of their business processes with address clean and capture. “We can now be confident that the tickets we issue will reach the right person at the right address. We have also seen a 7% uplift in data quality since using address cleaning, with 97% of the records now being accurate enough to mail to.”
UK tour operator Leger Holidays has been providing holiday packages for over 25 years, offering customers a choice of 423 destinations in 25 countries. The company specialises in short breaks, themed holidays such as Battlefi eld tours, and cruises in Europe. It markets holidays directly to its customers, and via travel agents, using direct mail and direct response advertising to acquire new customers. New business enquiries are serviced by the company website, www.leger.co.uk, and its call centre. In 2006, around 100,000 people enjoyed one of the company’s holidays.
Leger Holidays has a combined customer and prospect database of around 2.1m records. Before using Experian Data Quality software, data collected from inbound calls to Leger Holidays’ call centre was prone to errors. Operators frequently mis-typed customer details and the process was time consuming. This meant that valuable reservation time, which could have been spent promoting other company offerings, was wasted. The consequences of getting a customer's details wrong are also signifi cant, potentially resulting in tickets not arriving on time or local coach pick up details being given incorrectly.
Experian Data Quality worked with Leger Holidays to improve data accuracy at point of capture, using real-time address capture. However, the company had no solution for the ongoing verification of existing contact information within the database. Data decays over time with postal area changes and as people move house.
Leger Holidays runs a campaign each month to between 1,500 and 150,000 contacts. Over the course of a year, this equates to approximately 1.5m mailing packs. As a result of not validating the data prior to campaigns, Leger Holidays found that some of the direct mail packs were not reaching their intended destination. In addition, preparing data for each campaign was led by the IT department and was extremely time consuming. There was no set structure for the addresses and manual work had to be done on the data extract to ensure that the fi elds were correctly formatted for the mailing house.
The company deployed real-time address capture, which captures contact data quickly and accurately, after evaluating the software against a competing solution. Mike Fountain Head of Direct Channel Marketing at Leger Holidays, comments, "When we were selecting a software partner, Experian Data Quality won hands down in terms of technical support, professionalism and service."
Address capture is integrated within Leger Holiday's "Traveller" system, a bespoke software solution for the travel industry, so when calls come in to the company's call centre, customers' details are now verified instantly. To update legacy data, Leger Holidays uses address cleaning. The solution cleans and verifies contact records and standardises the addresses into a regular, consistent format.
Using Experian Data Quality address cleaning and capture, Leger Holidays has improved the efficiency of several business processes.
Mike Fountain comments: "We can now be confident that the tickets we issue will reach the right person at the right address. We have also seen a 7% uplift in data quality since using the product. This has improved our marketing campaigns, with 97% of the records in the database being accurate enough to mail to."
Mike Fountain has identified that prior to using address cleaning, approximately 10% of the data that was being used in mailing campaigns was inaccurate.
That is 150,000 mailing packs per annum that might not have reached the intended recipient. At a cost of 40p each, this equates to £60,000 of wasted mailings. Now using address cleaning, the contact information has been updated where possible and the 3% of data that is unfit for mailing can be suppressed from the campaigns. This improved data accuracy and subsequent data enhancement has enabled Leger Holidays to gain a better picture of the true value of each customer.
Also, the data doesn't have to be reworked prior to mailing campaigns, which means there is less input from the IT department and duplicate contacts can be matched more easily.
Data suppression is next on the agenda for Leger Holidays. At present, it has no way of flagging change of address, mortalities and contacts signed up to the preference service (telephone, mailing or fax) on the database. It is looking at the address cleaning with supression offering to help achieve this.
It also plans to deploy real-time address capture on the Leger Holidays website. Currently, when visitors to the website register their details, they must enter their address details in full in free text format.