Data Cleaning


Data cleaning is the process of amending or removing data in your database that is incorrect, incomplete, improperly formatted, or duplicated…to increase profits.

Why Bother Data Cleaning?

IT IS smart to have data cleaning, or data cleansing or scrubbing as a regular process in your business. It is profitable, because it stops you wasting money and creates new opportunities to earn income.

CONSIDER THIS, your customer contact data will have some combination of the following:

  • Title, Forename, Surname, Address, Postcode
  • Telephone Number (Landline, Mobile)
  • Email address

How likely is it that all your contact data is accurate?

  • The data you hold changes. People change their name. They move home. They die. They change their phone number and they acquire new email addresses.
  • It starts life in your database wrong. It had misspellings. It may even have been falsely reported in the first place.
  • You probably had missing information to start with – like the postcode, or email address.

Customer data decays at a rate of 1 to 2% per month. Without data cleaning in a year your data will be just 80% valid. This means you face some pretty horrendous consequences, like damage to your brand from mailing people who have died, for instance. Mailing a dead person is one of the biggest customer turn offs, especially if you market to the over 50s. 90% of recipients of such mail don’t forgive this mistake that easily. They will leave your brand and tell others they’ve done so, quicker than you can say data cleaning.

You will also miss out on postal discounts when you mail to your customers (which is advised if you want them to remain as active customers),

If you are sending products, then expect a bigger percentage of miss-deliveries. Dirty data hides a whole bunch of would-be fraudsters.


Data cleaning is how you take action with dirty data. 

1.  Commit now to data cleaning.

2.  Call Finely Fettled now. I’ll assess your data cleaning needs for free. Yep, you get a FREE AUDIT of your name and address, telephone and email data which will tell you what is wrong and how much it’ll cost to fix it.


ONE YEAR Data Cleaning Statistics…

  • % Deaths in UK Population 0.9% 0.9%
  • % of UK People Changing Address 12% 12%
  • % UK Telephone Numbers Changing Status Per Year 22% 22%
  • % Increase in Email Accounts in 2015 6% 6%

What Happens to 10,000 Consumers in a Year?

People Die

People Move

Phone Numbers Change

Get New Email Addresses

Imagine Hiding 20% of Your “Stock”?

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This market trader would not choose to lay out his deliciously tasty cheeses and chutneys and then throw a blanket over one fifth of them. Would he? That would be daft. So why do business owners ignore data cleaning? It’s just the same.

The Market Trader Data Cleaning Story

POOR DATA QUALITY is like this market trader NOT knowing which are his best and worst sellers. And then putting a cover over 20% of his stock so customers cannot see what’s on offer. He might think his products are on sale, but they aren’t. Data quality is like that – why market to someone who is dead or who has moved? They aren’t there to be sold to.

3 Reasons to Get a FREE DATA AUDIT

Green tick          Customer knowledge is your business
Green tick          Avoid communication wastage
Green tick          Get higher ROI on marketing campaigns

Yes, I Want Better Results From Data Cleaning

Why Work With Finely Fettled For Your Data Cleaning?

Get unique expertise from one of the UK’s leading data cleaning practitioners

Green tick  Uniquely marketed and developed products for most of the leading data cleaning service providers:

  • Royal Mail – National Change of Address (deceased, goneaway and forward address)
  • Equifax – disConnect & reConnect (deceased, goneaway and forward addresses)
  • The REaD Group – GAS & GAS Reactive (goneaway & forward addresses)
  • The REaD Group – The Bereavement Register (deceased)
  • Millennium Group – Mortascreen (deceased)

Green tick  Telephone Connectivity Validation – Finely Fettled offers data services and marketing consultancy for the leading provider of telephone connectivity validation, so can advise you on the best way to cleanse your telephone data for telemarketing, mobile marketing and keeping your CRM accurate.

Green tick Has a joint venture relationship with the leading provider of email validation in the UK. This partner was chosen for their willingness to go the extra mile to produce client’s excellent results.

Data Cleaning – More Details

Postcode Address File

Postcode Address File, Online Data Capture, CRM, Postcodes, Marketing Consultancy
Fast and Accurate Data Capture
If you capture names and addresses over the telephone or via your website, PAF assisted address completion will make it quick and easy for your customers to enter accurate data and give you the confidence that you have the correct data in your database. Discover what % of addresses are PAF accurate in your data.

Reduce Returns and Avoid Online Fraud
Finely Fettled can set you up with a PAF Plugin for your website and enable your call centre to accurately capture addresses, which will help you avoid communications and product deliveries being sent to the wrong places.

Mailing Efficiencies
Postcodes are used by the postal service to efficiently sort, route and deliver mail. If you send large volumes of mail, in excess of 4,000 for a single campaign, then talk to Finely Fettled and get the postal discounts you deserve.

Data Management
With so many ways for customers to provide you their data, it is easy to create duplicates in your database. PAF helps reduce these errors, which means avoiding have two or more records for the same customer and all that means for costs – like additional unnecessary and wasteful mailings.

Data Analysis
Having accurate addresses helps you target people in relation to where they live. If you have sales territories, or multiple shops, then having accurate addresses with postcodes increases efficiency, targeting and relevance for your customers.

Mailing Preference Service

Mailing Preference Service, Poor Data Quality, Data Cleaning, Data Cleansing, Direct Mail, Opt-out, Marketing Consultancy
If you are mailing to NON-CUSTOMERS, then your mailing lists should be screened against The Mailing Preference Service. This file contains approximately 6 million people who have registered their wish not to receive unsolicited advertising material by mail, including some people who are now deceased.

Deceased Suppression

UK Age Demographics

Deceased Suppression, Mortalisty File, Mortality Screening, Deceased Screening, The Bereavement Register, Mortascreen, Poor Data Quality, Data Cleaning, Data Cleansing, Direct Mail, Opt-out, Marketing Consultancy
Why Should You Decease Screen?

  • It avoids damaging your good reputation and you save the bereaved from distress.
  • You stop wasting money.
  • You can avoid being deceived by people impersonating the deceased.

It is good practice to not only screen out deceased people from your mailing files, but to isolate the bereaved at the household for a few months and cease especially marketing communications during this period.

Finely Fettled recommends using the leading mortality screening product, Mortascreen. The Mortascreen file has more than 10 million deceased individuals, with around 50,000 new entries added each month. This file is unsurpassed in the UK for quality and 9 out of 10 of the UK’s Top 100 Mailers relay on it to cleanse their mailings. The data is primarily sourced from Probate registers, deemed to be the best confirmation of death available.

Goneaway Suppression

Goneaway Screening, Goneaways, Goneaway Suppression, Data Cleaning, Data Cleansing, Return to Sender, Marketing Consultancy
Why You Must Identify Goneaways

  • You marketing budget is precious, don’t waste it mailing people who don’t live there any more.
  • It’s about your profits. These are your customers and prospects. They represent the easiest way to earn money from. About 10X easier and less cost than finding new customers. So know where you can contact them.
  • Your campaign performance improves automatically – if you remove the say 10% goneaways from your mailing, you immediately increase ROI by 11%.

Finely Fettled uses all the leading goneaway suppression files to ensure you identify and remove the people who have moved. Much of the data for these files is sourced from verifiable changes noted in financial records.

Residency Validation

Residency Validation, Name and Address Residency, Length of Residency, Goneaways, Deceased, Suppression, Data Quality, Marketing Consultancy, Data Cleaning, Data Cleansing
Finely Fettled accesses a UK Residency File of over 40m records, sourced from the Edited Electoral Roll and other data sources verified as being as accurate as possible.

Choosing to  match your data against a UK Residency File provides a lower cost alternative to removing goneaways and deceased from your database. Depending on your objectives, you can also append profiled data from this file to your data as well.

This is the MUST KNOW Data Cleaning Process

Forward Address Tracing

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Customer Reactivation is the 3rd easiest way to make money from marketing!

How To Reactivate Lost Customers

If your customers have moved, then there is a good chance they can be found at their new address. Typically, for every 2 households that have moved 1 is found. Keeping in touch with your customers is the most efficient and cost effective route to profits. Customers do not always think of you when they are moving. So a move can soon become a ‘lost customer’.

Reactivating lost customers is still the 3rd easiest way to generate income, with active customers first and referrals second. So investing in obtaining the forward addresses of your goneaway data makes great marketing sense.

Data for the forwarding addresses comes from Royal Mail redirections. It also comes from financial data like credit agreements (say, a credit card) which indicates a person is now resident at a new address. These so-called address-links are created between addresses and it is possible to trace individuals through a series of moves to where they are living now.

Reactivating and reconnecting to customers who have moved is a wise marketing move. At their new address, they may have fewer communication competing for their attention. Being reminded of their relationship with your business, and how important they are to you, is a powerful emotion and often campaigns based on such reactivations achieve excellent returns.

Example Data Cleaning Validation Reports

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Telephone Number Validation, Data Cleaning, Data Cleaning Services, Data Cleansing, Data Cleansing Services, Data Suppression, Goneaways, Deceased Screening, Mortascreen, The Bereavement Register, Disconnnect, Reconnect, Data Quality
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Finely Fettled is a specialist West Yorkshire Marketing Consultancy offering high net worth over 50s lead generation campaigns. We help you get more customers, then increase your business through referrals, customer reactivation and cash flow surges, by combining top class data with direct mail campaigns.