Mistakes made in product information management cost companies an estimated three billion dollars a year. This information, seemingly irrelevant to a customer, is one of the fundamental selling points of the product. Since this data will be sent to millions of potential customers, it is expected to contain accurate information that helps to sell the product—yes, an aspect of sales that is often neglected.
Customers don’t notice if the product information is well written and accurate, but they notice if it’s not. Especially, if it’s inaccurate data, then this may directly affect the customer’s buying decision. This is why companies invest in MDM tools, software that helps to manage this data.
MDM tools might include a variety of tasks and integrated modules. Integration is certainly essential, since problems do arise when there are different interfaces or changes in the application framework. Flexibility and easy integration into existing systems is an important point when choosing this software.
Modules that have the ability to access images, drawings and other multimedia are important, as customers do depend on visual references whenever possible. This information can be valuable in driving sales since the customer wants to feel trust and confidence, that their product will solve their problem in specific ways. They want to know the operation of the product before it ships, in effect, digitally “opening” the box and looking inside. Another factor of interest is the ability to open a variety of multimedia file types, from PDF or Word documents to spreadsheets, individual images and other formats.
Lastly, since this software will be publishing said information to multiple third parties, it is important to ensure the software has bi-directional synchronisation. It will enable templates and product information to be delivered to all these different avenues in a standardised way. This standardisation can also allow the information to be printed on a variety of documents, which is of crucial interest for marketers who want to bring the message offline. These avenues could include brochures, banners, cards, flyers, menus and other paper formats. As web marketing becomes more competitive, offline ventures are proving profitable, at least for the first point of contact, if nothing else.
There is a need for technical accuracy and strong sales performance within this “secondary” information. Companies that project success has to make sure they deliver. They can’t allow the campaign to be compromised by errors or copy that poorly communicates the product or brand.
MDM software can mean all the difference between profit and loss, whether or not a buyer notices the so-called “fine print”. Distributors know that inaccurate information could cause a product to be disqualified, improperly categorised or perhaps even inaccurately advertised. The clever thing to do for the company to avoid errors in development is to outsource this aspect of marketing to a specialist company that can guarantee accuracy and proper sales strategy. MDM software may help control budget costs since the software itself can be learned by a company’s staff and handled in-house. Every detail counts—especially when millions of dollars are at risk!