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Exporting Tip

Check your ZIP codes in exports

Updated over a week ago

Sending direct mail to lists of property owners at their home address often means that your marketing outreach is going to get delivered all over the nation, not just the state where the properties you are targeting are located.

This is especially true if you are targeting “Non-owner occupied” properties and are trying to reach the “Absentee Owners” at their home address.

For example, John and Jane Smith own a rental property in California but reside in Connecticut. To reach them by direct mail, your outreach will travel to Connecticut.

Exporting Tip: Removing Duplicate Owners

When building lists in PropertyRadar, it’s essential to be aware that duplicates may occur, leading to redundancy in your data. This can happen due to various reasons, such as owning multiple properties or appearing in different lists. Understanding how duplicates arise is the first step towards managing and optimizing your lists effectively.

Duplicate Owners: Understanding the Issue

Duplicates in your lists can arise when the same owner is associated with multiple properties or when similar criteria are used across different searches. This duplication can affect the accuracy and efficiency of your outreach efforts, leading to unnecessary time and resources spent on contacting the same individuals repeatedly.

How to Remove Duplicate Owners

You cannot remove duplicates from a Dynamic List, only a Static List. To copy your Dynamic List to a Static List from the My Lists page, click on the top right gear icon and select ‘Copy to a new static list.’ This action will duplicate your Dynamic List into a new static one.
Here are some strategies you can use to identify and remove duplicate owners from your lists:

1. Manually Remove Duplicates After Sorting:

  • After saving a list, sort the “Owner” column in ascending order.

  • Manually review the list and identify duplicate owner entries.

  • Select and remove duplicate entries from the list.

  • Once duplicates are removed, proceed with exporting the cleaned list.

2. Utilize Export Field Sets to Include Mailing Address:

  • Before exporting a list, apply Export Field Sets to include the mailing address along with the property address.

  • This allows you to identify unique mailing addresses associated with duplicate owners, even if they own multiple properties.

  • By including additional fields, you can streamline the process of identifying and managing duplicates.

3. Refine Search Criteria to Ensure Specificity:

  • When conducting searches, narrow down the criteria by specifying factors such as owner-occupied properties, property types, geographical locations, etc.

  • This helps ensure that your list is more targeted and less likely to contain duplicates.

  • By refining your search parameters, you can minimize the chances of duplicates appearing in your lists.

4. Utilize Excel or CSV Sorting Options:

  • After exporting your list, open the file in Excel or a CSV editor.

  • Utilize sorting options to group together entries with the same owner name.

  • Review the grouped entries to identify and remove duplicates.

  • Excel’s sorting features can streamline the process of identifying and managing duplicates, allowing for more efficient list cleanup.

Additional Tip: Utilize My Data for List Management:

  • Explore the My Data feature in the Search Options menu.

  • Use My Data to merge lists, identify duplicate owners across different lists, and exclude specific lists from your current saved lists.

  • This powerful tool allows for more comprehensive list management, helping you maintain clean and accurate data for your outreach efforts.

By implementing these strategies, you can effectively identify and remove duplicate owners from your lists, ensuring that your outreach efforts are more targeted and efficient.

Exports with Zip Codes

There are 3,669 zip codes in the US that start with a zero, mostly located on the east coast.

When you export a List to a . CSV file that contains a zip code that begins with a zero, it is written in the. CSV file as "01234" because zip codes are five digits: 12345. Zip+4 is also more common, "12345-1234." The first five digits indicate the destination post office or delivery area, and the ZIP+4 Code represents a specific delivery route.

Importing. CSV files that contain zip codes with leading zeros can lead to the "Dreaded Dropped Zero on ZIPs problem."

Some programs, Microsoft Excel most notably, treat the "01234" as an integer, not a string, and it drops the zero, leaving you with a 4-digit zip code "1234". Not good!

Postal services, especially the USPS, will not deliver to malformed zip codes. They must be five digits, even if the first 1, 2, or 3 zeros get dropped.

Managing & Validating your Exports

When sending a direct mail campaign, it's always best to inspect your list, sort by zip code from smallest to largest, and validate that all zip codes are five digits.

If you happen to find 3 or 4 digit zip codes, you will need to change the column format to a "00000 zip code" and add back the leading zeros before printing your labels or uploading that to a direct mail service.

Most direct mail services will reject addresses with malformed zip codes. So if your list of 1,000 addresses contains 100 malformed "dropped zero" zips, only 900 will be uploaded. This is true with our print partners.

We intend to build a native postal address validation service into PropertyRadar in the future. However, until that is available and you do a lot of direct mail from exports, please consider using a third-party postal address validation service or minimally, inspect your zip codes from exports.

This “Dreaded Dropped Zero on ZIPs” is a problem well known to marketers who frequently send direct mail, and dates back to 1979 and the first consumer spreadsheet program that viewed imported zips as integers, not strings.

The best way to preserve leading zeros in Excel can be found here:

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