Why NACE Codes Fall Short, and How MAP is Changing the Game

Why NACE Codes Fall Short, and How MAP is Changing the Game

Why NACE Codes Fall Short, and How MAP is Changing the Game

Since 1970, NACE codes have been the most widely used classification system throughout Ireland and Europe for grouping organisations according to generalised business activities.

Initially, these codes were effective for providing a broad overview of various industries, helping businesses and governments organise and analyse economic data.

However, as the business landscape has evolved, a critical flaw in NACE codes has become increasingly apparent: a lack of nuance.

Why Specificity Matters Now:

NACE codes categorise businesses into broad sectors, often missing the finer details that differentiate one company from another within the same industry. This lack of specificity can hinder modern marketing efforts that rely on precise targeting and personalization.

For instance, two companies classified under the same NACE code might operate in entirely different niches with unique customer bases and marketing needs. Traditional NACE codes fail to capture subtleties (See Figure 1 “The NACE Code Problem), leading to ineffective marketing strategies and missed opportunities for businesses to connect with new audiences.

As a result, businesses only using NACE codes for market segmentation and targeting may find themselves at a disadvantage, unable to fully understand and reach their ideal customers.

A Brand New Era in Business Data Classification:

In modern marketing, the shortcomings of NACE codes have become glaringly apparent. Broad categorizations are no longer sufficient for the granular level of analysis needed to gain competitive insights and tailor marketing campaigns.

Thus, we have created an advanced data classification system that analyses company activities in the marketplace based on their digital footprint. We call this system Market Activity Profiling (or “MAP” for short). Using MAP, we can create a more holistic view of a company based on its products, services, values, and recent events.

Using MAP as the basis for our data collection and classification, Sunstone has built the largest, most accurate database in Ireland with a full range of data variables never before offered or collected by any other data company. MAP marks a groundbreaking advancement in the realm of data classification, presenting a dynamic and relevant alternative to the outdated NACE codes.

How Market Activity Profiling Works

The actual process behind how MAP works involves using data from the CRO file and Sunstone’s custom AI to scan, interpret, and analyse the entire Irish webspace. Each Sunstone business data entry gets an in-depth examination of website offerings and social media platforms, followed by sentiment analysis on any ethos or specific values conveyed. By feeding this rich dataset into our advanced language models, we can extract critical industry insights—ranging from services and products to values and mission statements, as well as pertinent recent events.

This information, once refined, is transformed into standardised structures that let us generate unique MAP codes and descriptions that reflect the nuanced activities of various entities. MAP codes also incorporate a comprehensive suite of financial and corporate data, providing a unique 360-degree view of the Irish corporate landscape that no other data company can compare to. Sunstone’s MAP data includes all CRO-registered companies, ensuring complete and accurate market coverage.

Using Market Activity Profiling in Business Intelligence and Data Analytics 

Using MAP classifications, we created SalesSight AI, a service that combines MAP with data analytics to help companies reveal hidden sales opportunities. SalesSight AI uses several machine learning techniques to recommend ideal client types to our customers based on embeddings generated from the MAP output. From there, we can provide an evolving, targeted, nuanced sales funnel specific to each client.

We’ll illustrate how it works with an example of one of our client’s projects. In our partnership with an event management company, we applied the MAP system and SalesSight AI to reveal a comprehensive ecosystem surrounding data centres to supply targeted contacts for their Chief Information Officer Summit.

At first glance, the original NACE codes and descriptions of the companies seemed to have nothing to do with data centres. However, hidden relationships are where MAP codes and SalesSight AI’s capabilities truly shine. Using MAP codes, SalesSight AI not only highlighted data centres but also identified key players in their infrastructure and operations by analysing their websites and services, which traditional NACE code searches had overlooked.

These findings, in addition to several hundred other companies we identified in the data centre space, demonstrate the nuance and interconnectedness of various sectors within the Irish business market that would not be found without a MAP-based approach. SalesSight AI’s use of MAP codes allows businesses to uncover and capitalise on opportunities that traditional marketing methods often miss—particularly those reliant on outdated NACE codes for generating marketing lists.

Final Thoughts 

Sunstone’s MAP database and SalesSight AI have transcended the limitations of traditional NACE codes, ushering businesses into a new era of modernization and strategic insight.

By creating MAP codes, an Irish MAP database, and MAP-based analytics (SalesSight AI), Sunstone has set an unprecedented standard in business intelligence, enabling companies to achieve a new level of success unmatched in the industry. In the ever-evolving technology landscape, Sunstone stands as a transformative guide, ensuring that Irish businesses have the MAP data to lead the way into a new era of data innovation and market understanding.

Partner with Sunstone for Business Intelligence

If you’re interested in learning more about how MAP data or SalesSight AI can transform your business, we invite you to visit our dedicated pages linked above.

Discover the full range of capabilities and benefits that our advanced data classification and analytics tools can offer. Explore the potential of tailored market insights and innovative sales strategies to give your business a competitive edge. For more details and to see how these solutions can work for you, visit the MAP Data Solutions and SalesSight AI pages on our website. 

Contact us now to learn how we can support your business data needs and set your business up for success. 

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Optimising Your CRM: Essential Housekeeping Tasks During Summer

Optimising Your CRM: Essential Housekeeping Tasks During Summer

Optimising Your CRM: Essential Housekeeping Tasks During Summer

Enhance Accuracy and Efficiency in Your B2B Dataset with Key Maintenance Activities 

During the quieter summer months, businesses can take advantage of the downtime to focus on essential housekeeping tasks for their CRM or B2B datasets.

Ensuring that your data is accurate, clean, and ready for future business needs is crucial for maintaining efficiency and effectiveness in your operations. There are a few key tasks to consider for optimising your CRM during this period.

Data management is a continuous process that requires regular attention to prevent the accumulation of errors and inefficiencies.

The following tasks are vital for maintaining a robust and reliable CRM system: 

1. Data Cleaning

    • Duplicate Removal: Identify and merge duplicate records to maintain a single source of truth. This prevents confusion and ensures consistency. 
    • Data Validation: Verify the accuracy of contact information, such as email addresses, phone numbers, and mailing addresses to maintain reliable communication channels. 
    • Standardisation: Ensure data is consistent in format, such as dates, phone numbers, and job titles, which simplifies data processing and analysis. 

    2. Data Enrichment: 

    • Update Information: Refresh outdated information like job titles, company information, and contact details to keep your database current and relevant. 
    • Add Missing Data: Fill in missing fields to complete customer profiles, providing a comprehensive view of your contacts. 

    3. Segmentation and Categorisation: 

    • Customer Segmentation: Organise your contacts into meaningful segments based on industry, location, company size, etc., to tailor your marketing efforts effectively. 
    • Tagging: Apply relevant tags or labels for better sorting and searching capabilities, enhancing the usability of your CRM. 

    4. Database Organisation: 

    • Field Consistency: Ensure that fields across the database are uniformly applied and consistently filled, which facilitates better data management. 
    • Archiving: Archive old records that are no longer relevant but may need to be retained for historical purposes, keeping your active database lean and efficient. 

    5. Integration Check: 

    • System Integrations: Review and test integrations with other systems (e.g., marketing automation tools, email systems) to ensure data flows seamlessly between platforms. 
    • API Updates: Check for any updates or changes in APIs that could affect data integration, preventing potential disruptions. 

    6. Compliance and Security:

    • GDPR Compliance: Ensure your data handling practices comply with GDPR or other relevant data protection regulations, safeguarding customer privacy and avoiding legal issues. 
    • Data Security: Review and update security protocols to protect sensitive customer information from breaches and unauthorized access. 

    7. Reporting and Analytics: 

    • Update Reports: Refresh your reports and dashboards to reflect the most current data and insights, providing accurate and actionable information. 
    • Identify Trends: Analyse data trends to identify opportunities or areas for improvement, driving informed decision-making. 

    8. Training and Documentation: 

    • User Training: Conduct training sessions for team members on new features or best practices for using the CRM, ensuring they are equipped to utilise the system effectively. 
    • Documentation: Update internal documentation and guides to reflect any changes made to the CRM system or data handling processes, maintaining clear and up-to-date references. 

    9. Customer Engagement:  

    • Re-engagement Campaigns: Use the clean and updated data to reach out to inactive contacts with re-engagement campaigns, revitalising relationships and uncovering new opportunities. 
    • Feedback Collection: Gather feedback from key customers to understand their needs and improve your CRM practices, enhancing customer satisfaction and loyalty. 

    Regular CRM maintenance is a cornerstone of effective business operations. Historically, companies that have prioritised data cleanliness and accuracy have seen significant improvements in their marketing efficiency and customer satisfaction. For instance, previous updates to CRM systems have often led to better-targeted campaigns and higher engagement rates. 

    By focusing on these tasks during the quieter summer months, businesses can ensure their CRM or B2B dataset is in top shape, setting the stage for success as business activities pick up. Maintaining a clean, accurate, and well-organised CRM not only supports better decision-making but also enhances customer relationships and drives business growth. 

    Investing time in CRM maintenance is a strategic move that pays off by improving data quality, ensuring compliance, and enhancing overall operational efficiency. As you prepare for the busier seasons ahead, these housekeeping tasks will position your business to leverage its CRM system to its fullest potential. 

    Partner with Sunstone for Expert CRM Management 

    At Sunstone, we specialise in optimising your CRM and B2B datasets to ensure they are accurate, clean, and ready to meet your business needs. Our team of experts can assist you with every aspect of CRM maintenance, from data cleaning and enrichment to compliance and security. 

    Contact us now to learn how we can support your CRM maintenance needs and set you up for future success. 

    Contact Sunstone Today 

    For more information or to discuss how we can help your business, please contact: 

    Aisling Ní Mhuirí 

    Data Director 


    Ensure your CRM is a powerful tool, not a burden. Let Sunstone handle the heavy lifting so you can focus on what you do best—growing your business. 

    Fill Out the Form Below to Receive Our Essential Whitepaper on CRM Data Optimisation 

    Take your CRM to the next level with our expert guide! Download our comprehensive whitepaper, “CRM Data Optimisation: Best Practices for Cleaning, Enriching, and Managing Your B2B Dataset,” and discover how to keep your data accurate, clean, and ready for future business needs.

    Learn practical steps for data cleaning, enrichment, segmentation, and compliance to ensure your CRM system operates at peak efficiency. This whitepaper provides actionable strategies and industry best practices to enhance your data management and boost your business performance.

    Don’t miss the opportunity to streamline your CRM processes and unlock new growth potential. Download now!

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    Enhancing Data Quality and Standardisation: A Roadmap to Growth and AI Integration

    Enhancing Data Quality and Standardisation: A Roadmap to Growth and AI Integration

    Enhancing Data Quality and Standardisation: A Roadmap to Growth and AI Integration

    In today’s data-driven world, businesses must harness the power of high-quality, standardised data to drive business growth, make informed decisions, and implement advanced AI and ML processes.

    This article outlines a structured data funnel that businesses can implement to achieve these goals, ensuring a competitive edge in a rapidly evolving market.

    High-quality data is the cornerstone of success. Poor data quality can lead to misguided decisions, inefficiencies, and missed opportunities.

    Conversely, well-standardised data enables accurate analysis, efficient operations, and seamless integration with AI and ML technologies.

    A Basic Data Funnel

    Implementing a structured data funnel is essential for ensuring data quality and standardisation.

    Here’s a step-by-step guide:

    1. Data Collection


    · Online Forms: Standardise form fields and formats across all digital touchpoints.

    · Client Facing Teams (Sales, Customer Success): Equip teams with CRM tools featuring predefined fields and dropdowns.

    · Marketing Team: Integrate marketing automation tools to ensure consistent data capture.

    · Events: Use event management software, apps, or forms linked to your CRM to gather data uniformly.

    2. Data Input and Initial Processing

    Standardisation and validation:

    · Form Fields: Maintain consistent fields (e.g., Name, Email, Company, Phone) across all forms.

    · Validation Rules: Implement validation checks (e.g., email format, mandatory fields) to ensure data quality at the point of entry.

    · Unique Identifiers: Assign unique identifiers (e.g., customer ID) to avoid duplicates.

    3. Data Storage

    Centralised database:

    · CRM System: Use a central CRM system to store all customer data.

    · Data Warehouse: Aggregate data from various sources in a data warehouse for large datasets.

    · Cloud Storage: Ensure cloud-based storage for easy access and collaboration.

    4. Data Cleaning and Enrichment

    Regular Audits and Updates:

    · Duplicate Checks: Use tools to regularly check and merge duplicate records.

    · Data Enrichment: Leverage third-party services to enrich data (e.g., adding industry information, company size).

    · Consistency Checks: Regularly review data for inconsistencies (e.g., format, spelling errors).

    Did You Know?: Sunstone offers data cleaning and enrichment services. Discover fast, easy, automated data cleaning using the power of AI ➜

    5. Data Integration

    System Integration:

    · APIs: Utilise APIs to integrate data between different systems (e.g., CRM, marketing automation, event management).

    · ETL Processes: Implement Extract, Transform, Load (ETL) processes for seamless data flow.

    6. Data Usage and Analysis

    Reporting and Analytics:

    · Dashboards: Create dashboards for real-time data monitoring.

    · Reports: Generate regular reports to track key metrics and performance.

    · Feedback Loop: Use insights to inform data collection and processing improvements.

    7. Data Governance

    Policies and Procedures:

    · Data Ownership: Define data ownership and responsibilities.

    · Access Control: Implement access controls to ensure data security.

    · Compliance: Ensure compliance with relevant data protection regulations (e.g., GDPR).

    8. Continuous Improvement

    Feedback and Iteration:

    · User Training: Provide ongoing training for staff on data entry best practices.

    · Feedback Mechanisms: Set up mechanisms for feedback from data users to continually improve the data funnel.

    · Regular Reviews: Conduct regular reviews and updates to the data funnel process to adapt to changing needs.

    Benefits to Business Growth and Decision Making

    By implementing this data funnel, businesses can reap numerous benefits:

    · Improved Business Decision Making: High-quality, standardised data enables businesses to make informed and accurate business decisions. Reliable data allows for the identification of trends, understanding customer needs, and tailoring strategies accordingly.

    · Enhanced Efficiency and Productivity: Standardised data processes reduce the time spent on manual data entry and cleaning, leading to higher productivity and enabling teams to focus on strategic tasks that drive growth.

    · Seamless AI and ML Integration: High-quality data forms the foundation of effective AI and ML implementations. Standardised data facilitates the automation of processes, prediction of customer behaviour, and personalisation of marketing efforts.

    · Better Customer Insights: Accurate data provides deeper insights into customers, leading to improved satisfaction and loyalty. Understanding customers better allows businesses to offer more tailored solutions and services.

    · Competitive Advantage: Robust data processes give businesses a competitive edge in the B2B landscape. Quick responses to market changes, optimised operations, and superior customer experiences are all achievable with high-quality data.

    In the past, reliance on platforms like Google Ads has led to volatile marketing costs and fluctuating ROI for many businesses. 

    The shift towards market insights represents a strategic evolution, offering stability and more predictable outcomes.

    Final Thoughts:

    Improving data quality and standardisation is not just a technical necessity but a strategic imperative. By implementing a structured data funnel, businesses can unlock the full potential of their data, drive growth, and pave the way for advanced AI and ML integrations. Embrace this journey with a commitment to continuous improvement, and your business will be well-positioned for sustained success in the digital age.

    Fill Out the Form Below to Receive Our Comprehensive Whitepaper: Improving Data Quality and Standardisation

    Unlock the full potential of your business data with our expert guide! Download our comprehensive whitepaper, “Improving Data Quality and Standardisation: A Step-by-Step Guide” and learn how to implement a robust data funnel that ensures accuracy, consistency, and actionable insights.

    Whether you’re looking to enhance your data collection, integrate advanced tools, or establish clear data governance, this whitepaper provides the essential strategies and best practice first steps you need.

    Don’t miss out on transforming your data management and driving business growth.

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