The New Rules of the Road, Part 4: Considering the Needs of All Constituent Stakeholders

“We put the consumer at the forefront of our data management system…just because we have permission to use certain information, doesn’t mean we will. We want the focus to be what is right for the consumer—what they want and have expressed to us—rather than what is right for the bottom line. – Senior product manager, technology provider

Recently, DMA and Winterberry Group released a white paper, “The New Rules of the Road,” which outlined five key actions that are vital to good data governance for marketers.  So far, we have maintained an evolving map to better understand our data assets, developed our unified data strategy, and built an infrastructure to make it possible to execute that strategy. 

Today, we’re going to dive into the fourth item on that list: considering the needs of all constituent stakeholders.

Up until this point, the first three steps focused on what to do within a company in order to make data management easier, or even possible.  Now, we turn our focus outside of the organization itself. 

According to the report, it is essential to develop a data strategy and infrastructure that serves those who have a stake in the company’s use of consumer data.  A proactive approach to data governance will anticipate and respond to the needs of all constituents — especially customers, whose data are being used and whose patronage brings in the company’s revenue.  Employees, shareholders, and partners should also be considered when formulating strategy and infrastructure.  The report also stresses the importance of communicating to these parties the fact that you are honoring and considering their needs and choices.  Make sure they know the measures you are taking to provide them with both transparency and choice.

 According to “New Rules,” this is already somewhat common—the new culture of “customer-centrism” in business has most organizations using the needs of their customers as the general guideline for how to do their business.  With respect to data use, providing education and advocacy to customers is very important, so that they understand how the use of their data benefits them.  But when thinking about data, not all organizations think beyond the customer to incorporate the needs of their employees, stockholders, and partner companies all at the same time. That synthesized approach is what will put your company out ahead.

You can read more about the “New Rules of the Road” here for more statistics and a more in-depth picture of the work necessary to develop a cutting-edge data strategy for your business.  And tune in next week, when we go over the fifth and final step of the report: developing a “data culture” grounded in continuous learning and improvement.

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