Good digital governance is increasingly being recognised as a key enabler of progress, allowing companies to embrace technologies more rapidly and innovate with greater confidence.
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Three trends in particular have emerged from the DGX in 2015:
Consumer vs compliance: the inability of legislation to keep up with technology can result in situations where brands are legally compliant but misaligned with consumer expectations. Discussions around how brands can effectively secure sustainable data flows have repeatedly highlighted the need to look beyond compliance in order to strengthen relationships with consumers.
Control vs creativity: the number of risks presented by the online ecosystem has led many brands to implement consistent and robust governance standards across their operations. However, these standards must have sufficient flexibility to allow marketers the freedom to remain creative and dynamic. Strategies relating to digital security and copy approval processes have demonstrated the need to balance risk with commercial considerations.
Commands vs compromises: it is increasingly important for different functions, such as legal, marketing, consumer relations, IT and procurement to work collaboratively in the area of governance. Not only does it ensure that governance solutions take into account the priorities of each function, but it also ensures that each are accountable and that solutions are implemented consistently across the board. Commands are often received reluctantly while compromises are more readily embraced.
What will 2016 bring?
Ad-blockalypse now? By June 2015, almost 200 million internet users around the world were estimated to be using ad blocking technology. Evidence indicating the motivations for the use of ad blocking are starting to emerge; it paints a concerning picture of ad blockers as a one-stop-solution to people’s online concerns. Industry has only just begun to react but in 2016, we hope to start seeing the fruits of a coordinated response to address people’s concerns with advertising. It’ll take a mighty and concerted effort by the whole of the industry to highlight the consequences of ad blockers for the creation of content and the benefits that advertising can bring to people’s lives.
Privacy pains. 2016 will see the finalisation of the wording of the General Data Protection Regulation, which will be the most comprehensive piece of data protection legislation ever. Businesses will have two years to comply but for many international companies this will involve substantial upscaling of privacy teams across all companies and an upskilling of all staff on privacy-related issues, including marketers. Equally as brands continue to strive to build stronger relationships with consumers online, will compliance be enough to allay mounting privacy concerns around the world? We predict that brands will have to build positive conversations with people in order to secure sustainable data flows in a consumer-empowered future.
For more information, contact Chris.