Aims to Enhance Consumer Trust and Foster Innovation

July 17, 2013 — As the champion of the responsible data-driven marketing that fuels our digital economy and lifestyle, the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) is rallying the industry to develop new guidance for modern marketers around the use of technology to improve in-store experiences.  This will take the form of additional principles in our Ethical Guidelines, already used by thousands of marketers to ensure responsible use of data, consumer protection and effective marketing.

DMA is developing the new guidelines in order to specifically address in-store data collection and use, protect and ensure consumer trust, quell some of the unfounded accusations and misunderstanding about how retailers and marketers collect and use consumer data, as well as foster advances in technology.

“We have a significant number of leading retailers and service providers in our membership,” said Linda A. Woolley, DMA’s president and CEO.  “We want to ensure both effective consumer choice as well as foster innovation.  Our digital lifestyles – and much of the economy – are powered by the responsible use of technology – there is no need to shrink from advances in the responsible use of marketing data for marketing purposes.”

DMA already publishes Guidelines for ethical business practices, including the responsible collection and use of consumer data.  These guidelines are essential to the public trust that DMA provides as part of our self-regulated industry.  They are dynamic, and constantly evolve to meet the needs of the marketplace, Woolley says.  Additionally, DMA provides a variety of consumer services programs that give consumers choice about the types of advertising and marketing they receive.  These new guidelines will build on the success of the current guidelines in providing a set of standards for the industry and for consumer data protection.  Other guideline development efforts currently include updates on email and mobile marketing, and digital advertising. DMA invites members and partners in the industry to participate in this ongoing effort.

About Direct Marketing Association (DMA)

The Direct Marketing Association ( is the world’s largest trade association dedicated to advancing and protecting responsible data-driven marketing.  Founded in 1917, DMA represents thousands of companies and nonprofit organizations that use and support data-driven marketing practices and techniques.

In 2012, marketers — commercial and nonprofit — spent $168.5 billion on direct marketing, which accounts for 52.7 percent of all ad expenditures in the United States.  Measured against total US sales, these advertising expenditures generated approximately $2.05 trillion in incremental sales. In 2012, direct marketing accounted for 8.7 percent of total US gross domestic product and produces1.3 million direct marketing employees in the US.  Their collective sales efforts directly support 7.9 million other jobs, accounting for a total of 9.2 million US jobs.

DMA’s most current initiative is the Data Driven Marketing Institute (DDMI), which advances and protects data-driven marketing by engaging the entire industry in a coordinated campaign to set the record straight about the countless ways that data-driven marketing benefits consumers and fuels the data-driven economy.

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