Why does Data Governance Matter to Contemporary Marketers?

Aadyasha Satrusallya / September 1, 2020 | 3 Mins Read

Why does Data Governance Matter to Contemporary Marketers?

Evolving technologies offer exciting insights from data to digital marketers. However, many marketers are put off by descriptions of data governance and just dive in with the new technology. Unfortunately, this approach exposes businesses to risk and poor quality data. In this post, we explore this in more detail and outline exactly why data governance should matter to contemporary marketers

Driven by Data

These days, almost all aspects of business are driven by data. However, marketers have an even greater thirst for data than almost any other area. Given this, the quality of the data being used must be of the highest quality. 

Companies able to harness the power of data grow, but those that do so well, do so sustainably. The only way to manage data well is with good data governance practices in place and cross-organizational support. 

So what exactly do we mean when we say data governance is a must? Well, data governance simply refers to defining, categorizing, and managing all the data you collect. This can be millions or even billions of bits of information, highlighting the importance of automation in any data governance strategy. 

Without understanding what data is being collected, why, and how it is being stored and processed, we can’t be sure of its quality. Data governance ensures we can have trust in the data that matters to us the most. 

Essential Data for Marketers

For marketers to be effective they need to have access to good quality customer data. This includes things like demographic information, purchasing behaviour, company interaction/s, feedback and engagement, product engagement and interest, and web and app interactions. 

Given marketing decisions will be based on these bits of essential data, it is vital that they offer a true representation of what they pertain to. Without data governance, this is impossible. 

Data governance implements quality controls from data collection, in pre- and post-production environments, through processing and analytics, and all the way into outputs. It ensures the data is reliable and consistent whilst also ensuring those who should do have access when they need it, and as soon as possible. This makes it possible for more agile responses to insights in the data, vital for marketers trying to keep up with changing customer segments. 

When does data governance stop?

Data governance is all about continuous improvement. That means signing up to the importance of data governance is not a one-off. It relies on creating a culture across the organization that recognizes its vital nature. It requires buy-in from the top of the organization and all the way through it. To achieve this, it must be transparent, well documented, quality-assured, regularly audited, and updated. 

This highlights that data governance is not simply about cleaning data and storing it securely. It is about understanding the whole flow of data, from how it is collected, to why it is, and how it can be suitably harnessed and protected. As such, good data governance should always seek to: 

1. Ensure consistent and reliable data

Through well-documented standards and benchmarks, marketers can be sure decisions are being made based on clear assumptions and reliable data. Changes to the system should be carefully controlled and collected data must have a clear purpose.

2. Guide analytics

Knowing the data is reliable ensures analytics that can be relied on. That means marketing insights can be safely driven by the data. Data governance also sets out accountability for data quality bringing benefits to contemporary marketers.

3. Both save and make money

Knowing your data is trustworthy and secure is good for business. It helps ensure the decisions you make are the right ones and keeps customers happy. Be that for keeping their data secure or improved personalization.

4. Improve analysis, reporting, & insights

With improved data, businesses can be more agile, helping to improve longer-term sustainability. When working with trusted data, we can also make clearer decisions based on solid foundations. 

Data governance is not just something for the IT team to worry about. Whilst it is important for there to be buy-in across organizations, for contemporary marketers, good data governance policies should be a must. It ensures confidence in data quality, data accessibility, and data activation. As such, it is essential for any marketer and business seeking to foster data practices that allow for sustained growth. 

Aadyasha Satrusallya

Aadyasha is an experienced Digital Marketer at Acquire and a content writer specializing in marketing. Apart from that she enjoys dancing and loves to spend free time exploring nature.

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