DMA, the data and direct marketing trade organisation, is launching an initiative in Scotland to help businesses “responsibly deliver value to their customers”.

“The campaign will provide an engaging, navigable roadmap through a challenging ethical and legal landscape to allow innovative and data-led approaches to customer engagement to thrive,” said Rachel Aldighieri, DMA’s managing director. “And we’ll do it all with a future-focus: nurturing local and young talent.”

Aldighieri cited the recent signing of the Edinburgh and South East Scotland City Region Deal, and its focus on data driven innovation which has the potential to deliver £20bn-worth of productivity benefits for the economy over the next five years.

“Advertising and marketing are at the heart of the UK economy and play a vital role in driving economic growth,” she writes at The Drum. “Annual UK exports of advertising services are worth £4.1 bn and every £1 spent on advertising returns £6 to the economy, resulting in £120bn to UK GDP.”

Aldighieri added: “The publicity of the Edinburgh and South East Scotland City Region Deal should help to put the data and marketing industries on the radar of those making career choices in the future.

“However, the industry needs to develop stronger ties with academic institutions to increase awareness about the skills required for a role within the data-driven industries and provide insights into the career prospects that these positions can offer.

“In a post-GDPR era, marketers are held more accountable for their actions, but they must receive relevant training and guidance to better understand their evolving roles – where processing consumer data and interpreting it are now key areas of their job description.”

To foster discussion, the DMA and DMA Scotland is launching an initiative entitled Value of Data. It will seek partnerships with government, businesses and educational institutions to develop a consumer-focused mindset within the data and marketing industries.

Led by Firas Khnaisser, head of decisioning at Standard Life and chairman at DMA Scotland, and Derek Lennox, head of data governance at Sainsbury’s Bank and vice-chairman of DMA Scotland, Value of Data will help businesses to responsibly deliver value to their customers, said Aldighieri.

“Ultimately, [it] will develop a true appreciation of the worth of data so businesses can build stronger, more profitable relationships with consumers – responsibly, sustainably and ethically.”