Sourcing is a Full Contact Sport by @AaronLintz

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Dec 5, 2013
This article is part of a series called Tips & Tricks.

One of the most common frustrations for sourcers is when a perfect profile is identified, but there is not enough contact information to reach out to them. With only a name, phone number, or email address you will not close a requisition. Great sourcers have developed tricks to verify or match some data, but I am always looking for new and better ways.

Marketers often use paid services to clean-up or enhance data profiles for strategic (segmentation, demographics) and practical purposes (change of address). These vendors tend to offer expensive services with cryptic names like data cleaning, appending services, normalization, and data hygiene, but the goal is always to verify, or convert partial data into useful records.

I tackled this problem recently using a neat tool by FullContact, and I wanted to share my findings.

FullContact offers a few tools typically marketed to corporate clientele. Like many tech companies, they offer APIs for developers to create hybrid solutions.Their Person API is available with 250 free matches per month, but I’m not a programmer. Thanks to Google, I found these excel spreadsheets shared by Travis Todd, at FullContact on Github. Using excel macros, these templates can send and receive data using their API to populate your spreadsheet like magic. The result is a brilliantly simple way to convert partial data into a lead list.

Using the excel files above, add your API Key (registration required), select the starting point (email address, twitter ID, phone#, or Facebook username), and add that data to column A on the second page of your spreadsheet. Then click “populate contacts” and get ready to wait! Excel Macros (visual basic) is not fast and these recommended settings ensure quality over speed.


When my results are ready, I have a wonderful spreadsheet with actionable and accurate contact data and so much more. The second column shows if the search was successful (in this case 9 out of 10) and the last column “likelihood”(not shown) indicates FullContact’s confidence all data is a match (all were +90%).


 Available data fields include:

Contact Info: Name, Email, Age, Gender, Location, Company, Occupation, Profile Photo

Additional Data: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, Klout, Flickr, YouTube, Google Plus, Twitter Followers # , Following #, Full Bio, Klout Topics, Klout Score, Blog RSS, Instant Messenger, etc

One can also create and export reports with statistics and demographic details.


Too Much Information (TMI)


This tool has limitations. It will not look up a person based on name alone, and it’s SLOW. Unfortunately, they do include age or gender if available. The sourcecode is available if someone wants to fork this to make a version without those columns. From a privacy perspective, Full Contact is similar to a people aggregator like Entelo or TalentBin, converting bits of open web data into a standard format. Unlike those tools, this method works with any industry, niche, or market.

Now, go out there and track down those conference attendees, fire up Rapportive, and grab some Twitter screens. Sourcing is a FullContact sport!

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This article is part of a series called Tips & Tricks.
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