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DMA, Winterberry Group Offer New Data Stewardship Rules

24 Jul, 2013 By: Doug McPherson

NEW YORK – The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) and the Winterberry Group, a marketing consultancy, have released a white paper dubbed, “The New Rules of the Road: Marketing Data Governance in the Era of Big Data” that says good data stewardship not only reduces risk, but also increases profits.

Key findings include:

  • 93 percent of marketers surveyed expect customer information will drive a “significant” contribution in the future, and they believe the maximizing that value to be the best benefit of an effective marketing data governance strategy.
  • 79 percent of marketers say their organizations would benefit from more sophisticated, strategic data governance approaches. But only 32 percent “strongly agree” that data governance is currently a clear priority within their companies.
  • Internal process challenges and misaligned organizational structures are limiting marketers’ abilities to develop and implement strategic data governance approaches.

The paper offers five actions marketers should take to build data governance capability:

  1. Maintain an evolving map of their customer information, breaking down the class of each marketing data asset at a deeply granular level.
  2. Develop a unified data strategy that considers (and incorporates, over time) several inputs, supporting use cases, deployment technologies, regulatory and best-practice guidelines and other operating parameters.
  3. Build infrastructure to support marketing data usage while improving the roles of people, platforms, processes and partners in unlocking the value of those assets.
  4. Consider the needs of all constituents in developing and refining data governance guidelines – leveraging information to improve the value (and protect the interests) of customers, employees, shareholders, partners and other parties.
  5. Develop a “data culture” grounded in continuous learning and improvement, leveraging information to help drive product and customer innovations (and reinforcing the need to safeguard those critical corporate assets).

DMA President and CEO Linda A. Woolley says proper data stewardship is a “business imperative.”

“Marketers have traditionally thought of data stewardship only in terms of risk-management, but they now can make it part of their business growth strategy,” she adds. “After all, consumer trust is directly connected to successful business relationships – and in the end, that trust drives the bottom line.”

Rich Walker, managing director at Winterberry Group, says, “Our research revealed that a new imperative is emerging: Manage information as a strategic asset, responsive to the needs of customers, marketers and other stakeholders. That’s driving many to reassess the role of governance, with an eye on managing, safeguarding, and optimizing the contribution of data across the enterprise.”

Click here to view the report. Additionally, DMA and the Winterberry Group will present a webinar on the results of the study on August 19, from 2 to 3 p.m. EST. For more information or to register, click here.

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