Monthly Archives: October 2011
Top 13 Most Embarrassing Data Breaches
Identity theft is on the rise each year. In 2011 alone, Sony won the crown for largest number of people affected with a shade over 100 million. In spite of more advanced security measures, it seems data leaks are here to stay.
With that said, take a look at these Top 13 Most Embarrassing Data Breaches. Perhaps you were affected by one or more of these. If so, or if you want to add to the list, just share your thoughts below.
1. Playstation Network and Sony Online Entertainment
In April and May of 2011, the Sony Playstation Network was hacked not once, but twice, resulting in perhaps the largest data breach of all time. Credit card numbers and expiration dates as well as personal information for an estimated 77 million were hijacked. Sony Online Entertainment was estimated to have given up another 24.5 million, making this one the biggest screw-job to consumers during the Digital Age.
2. Heartland Payment Systems
Sony is in good company with the 2009 data heist at Heartland Payment Systems. Heartland coughed up more than 100 million card numbers from approximately 650 financial services companies, dealing a black eye to the equivalent of one-third of the US population and shafting a lot of businesses in the process. The good news is the hacker responsible, Albert Gonzalez, was arrested, convicted and sentenced to 20 yrs in prison in April, 2010.
3. TJ Maxx
While Sony’s misgivings were across two networks and Heartland’s involved 650 of their clients, the retailer TJ Maxx may win the award for most embarrassing data breach. For scaring the bejeezus out of 45 million credit and debit card holders in 2007, TJ Maxx was eventually forced to pay a $40.9 million settlement to Visa to help offset costs related to the breach. Ouch!
Sales Leads – How to make those Sales Leads worth every penny!
So, you’ve finally purchased some sales leads…now what to do with them? How can you best handle each phone call so you don’t waste your opportunity to sell them your product or service? Tell them a story they won’t forget. Here are the top five ways to deliver a memorable sales pitch:
1. Don’t focus on your product – focus on the prospect. People love hearing about themselves and answering questions about their business, product or service. Gain trust and knowledge by focusing on your customers as people, not just sales leads.
2. Personal experience is best. Even if it’s fiction, base your sales story on real life experiences. The more you can describe a situation that leads your prospect to believe you understand where they are coming from, the better. Then explain how your product or service can fill their need and you’re off to the races.
3. Drop the jargon. Instead of trying to impress your prospect with fancy industry words, speak in terms that are relevant to your prospect.
4. Who are you talking to? Tailor your story to the specific person with whom you are speaking. If it’s a CFO, talk about how your product can generate more revenue…if it’s a sales manager, talk about how your product can make their reps’ time more efficient.
5. If they say it first, it’s truth. Lead your prospect down the road you want them on, but when you’re really trying to drive home a point, getting the prospect to say your point for you is mastering the art of sales. Try leading questions and plant ideas in their heads along the way. Saying, “we are the best in our industry” is a lot less effective than leading them to believe you are the best without having to say it.
Sales leads aren’t cheap and should be handled with care. Taking some time to think through your sales pitch and planning ahead will do wonders to your bottom line. Make sure whoever is calling your sales leads understands the best way to communicate with your prospective clientele so that you make the most out of your marketing investment.
Mailing Lists – Utilizing your mailing list to the fullest extent
It’s great to maintain your internal mailing list so that you can use it to re-contact your clients throughout the year…but the key to success is building this mailing list so that it is a highly effective way to generate business throughout the year. Mailing lists don’t build themselves. Here’s a way to use your current mailing list to generate thousands more prospective clients over night.
US Data Corporation has an advanced way to process your current mailing list and generate a comprehensive profile report of your ideal target market, using over 700 demographic data elements to come up with the profile. This process is called the Prospect Maximizer and has been used by many top 500 Fortune companies nationwide to help expand their internal mailing lists.
In a matter of minutes, a patented, automated modeling process compares your customers to non-customers. The model goes through hundreds of generations of analysis to identify what attributes about your customers are unique and predictive. The attributes that make someone more likely to respond are measured and then derived into an equation, which is used to score households and companies in the US Data Corporation consumer and business universes.
The mailing list that is derived from this model report is the most highly responsive mailing list money can buy because it is based on people and/or businesses that have already purchased from you. Give the Prospect Maximizer a try! You’ll be surprised how effective a mailing list can be.
Contact one of our Prospect Maximizer experts at 888-578-3282 for more information.