Dirty Data? How to know when it’s time have your data scrubbed.

Oct. 26, 2018 | Sarah Haertl, VP Marketing and Communications

Why it’s so important for nonprofits to routinely clean their data.

Routine data scrubbing is essential to any business, but in the nonprofit world, where fundraising is the lifeblood of the organization, it is critical.

The importance of data cleansing boils down to basic mathematics. To maximize the return on your campaign’s investment, it’s imperative that the solicitation reach the hands of the intended recipient. Only then will your campaign achieve the fundraising success needed to allow your organization to fulfill its mission. Inaccurate and incomplete data lead to missed revenue opportunities and can damage your brand’s reputation.

How does data scrubbing increase the ROI on a campaign? 

There are a couple of ways regular data management can help your nonprofit increase the Return On Investment (ROI) for your fundraising campaigns:

  • Ensures data is correctly formatted, accurate and consistent.
  • Improves response rates of campaigns.
  • Decrease donor loss - If the appeal isn't getting in the hands of the donor, then you may end up with a high number of lapsed donors.
  • Reduced postage rates - In order to qualify for the best/lowest postage rates, the United States Postal Service requires you to maintain clean data. 

Lower postage rates and increased donations increases the ROI.

Aegis Director of Data Services, Kerry Tippins, explains the value of data management: 

"Cleansing a nonprofit’s data allows you to remove inaccurate or duplicated data that leads to ineffectiveness by standardizing addresses and removing any address records that are not mailable," Tippins said. 

"In addition, a merge purge or deduplication ensures the removal of duplicates prior to mailing which reduces the overall cost of the campaign."

How often should a nonprofit cleanse its data?

For CRM databases, going the extra mile of running a deduplication on your database every six months ensures you do not mail duplicate records and are keeping your database clean, resulting in maximized fundraising efforts and reduced waste.

National Change of Address (NCOA) and Coding Accuracy Support System (CASS) are required by the United States Postal Service quarterly for all marketing mail.

Want to learn more about Aegis Data Services?

If your nonprofit doesn’t have a data services team on staff or is looking to reduce overhead by outsourcing, Aegis Data Services can help. Our highly-trained data engineers have more than 60 years combined experience in direct mail and data processing including experience with database querying and programming logic.

Aegis Data Services team offers full-service data management including:

  • Data quality enhancements and cleansing (CASS, NCOA, Deceased/DMA/Prison Suppression) 
  • Merge purge and deduplication
  • Complex acquisition/prospect jobs (whether on Aegis CRM or with your current CRM, Aegis Data Services can process your Acquisition jobs and deliver data to your mail house of choice in the format that you require)
  • Donor pulls
  • List orders
  • Data appends (phone, email, gender, demographics, etc.)
  • Special scanlines, ask arrays, etc.
  • Custom data work

To learn more about our full line of services, please contact:

Kevin Hartland

Sarah Haertl is Vice President of Marketing and Communications for the three Aegis companies: Aegis Premier Solutions, Aegis Processing Solutions and Aegis Premier Technologies. She has a proven track record of success in marketing, communications and public relations and has served on the boards of numerous nonprofits. To contact Sarah, email her at

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