“Technology is a huge asset here. If you have a lot of information you should be able to choose what you expose to whom, and when. And the only way to erect those barriers and execute quickly and at scale, is with technology. – 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, and developed our unified data strategy to use those assets in conjunction with other important factors.

Today, we’re going to dive into the third item on that list: building an infrastructure to support the utilization of marketing data.

According to the report, lack of good infrastructure—both technologically and with regards to personnel—is one of the biggest problems that marketers face within organizations.  It impedes their ability to use data effectively.  All of the strategic planning in the world is useless in the face of obstacles such as outdated technology, insufficient human resources, lack of expertise, and misaligned processes.   If the organization is to benefit from the use of its data resources, there must be a supporting infrastructure that governs the deployment of those resources.

To develop such a unified infrastructure, a plan for implementing an organization’s objectives must be developed, and project managers should be assigned to it, the report suggests.  Existing resources should be assessed to determine what is lacking and what is effective.  If technology is lacking, new vendors should be engaged to obtain services and solutions.  Findings indicate that new processes should be communicated to employees, as well as training and a regular update system.

In other words:  Keep people informed and educated! This will support an infrastructure of useful technology, trained employees, and clear project objectives that in turn will support the effective implementation of a comprehensive data strategy.

Sadly, “New Rules” reports that this is not yet common practice, which is why so many organizations report difficulty in dealing with the data they already have.  While many organizations have begun to move in the direction of strategizing their data governance, not enough have done the necessary infrastructural work to make it happen efficiently.

Don’t be that organization which falls behind on its data governance strategy!  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 step four of the report: considering the needs of all constituent stakeholders.

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