Congress Likely to Push for Data Governance
To comply with the impending legislation, direct marketers will need to renew their commitment to understanding the ways that data flows within their organizations. Has your company done a good job of vetting every acquisition marketing partner? Is the firm that's hosting your database marketing software maintaining adequate safeguards? What's the risk/reward ratio if your parent company chooses to merge the databases of all of its divisions? To have the information needed to make these critical decisions, marketers will need to completely understand their data flows.
I recently heard Direct Marketing Association President/CEO John Greco speak at a privacy conference during which he advocated that our industry provide consumers with more control over the way in which we market to them. I agree, and think smart companies will get better at determining how customers want to interact, and will devise a truly customized strategy that fits each customer's preferences. The companies that provide their customers with a wide array of options regarding permissions management will be in the best position to succeed in the next few years.
There's a train a comin'. Are you on board?
Alan Chapell is president of Chapell & Associates, a consulting firm that helps direct marketers strike a balance between smart marketing and legal compliance. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.