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Data Reporting and Data Protection

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Digital Marketing - Study Notes:

Reporting to upper management

What are upper management really looking for to make decisions quickly?

  • Real-time access: They want access to real-life tools that you can basically use for them to make decisions on, for example, a daily or even an hourly basis. And you need to be giving them those key sorts of tools.
  • Regular updates: You need to do regular updates. You need to maybe have weekly meetings or conference calls.
  • Comprehensive reporting: You need to specify comprehensive reporting at specific times. Consider bulk batch reporting as well. And so there needs to be that combination of real-time reporting versus bulk batch reporting to kind of come up with different layers of insights. And then those drive different decision-making processes basically.
  • Exception reporting: You also need to have exception reporting because there’ll be the normal stuff, but you need to think about how other things operate. And if anything falls out with the common processing, how does that then work?
  • So-what analysis: A “so-what” analysis can be really, really useful.

We’ve also included some sort of best practice in this area:

  • Keep it simple.
  • Keep it visually appealing, using data visualization.
  • Use triangulation, giving qualitative versus quantitative results.
  • Refer to high level and detailed reports. So they’re the different levels that you basically have. Go to the high level, go into the detail. All these kinds of key things are going to be really important for senior managers to basically get their heads around.


There are a variety of different tools out there that you can use. Do some independent deep-dives into these tools that are here, and see if they actually will help you to be able to make decision making. Give the tools to senior management to use on a trial basis. Often these are all SAS based tools, so in reality, you can switch on, switch off, which are particularly useful.

Protecting data subjects

This is particularly important in a world of GDPR, for example.

  • Get the permission to use the data
  • Use the data in the right way.
  • Analyze the data in a compelling way.
  • Use it to reach out to people, only if they want to be spoken to.

Storing data

Some of the key considerations about where you store your data is also a really important one to be to be thinking of as well.


Certification is really important in this stage to demonstrate your professionalism in being able to protect data, protect the privacy of your customers, and it’s only going to grow in this area.

Certification is a great way to be able to demonstrate your competence. So something like an ISO type of certification becomes quite important.

These are the steps to certification:

  • Identify the steps involved in becoming certified for data protection:
  • Choose a governing body
  • Understand the process
  • Begin to comply
  • Undertake a test to be granted certification
  • Undergo regular audits to maintain certification

Getting a data certification or privacy certification will help your business move forward.

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Richie Mehta

Ritchie Mehta has had an eight-year corporate career with a number of leading organizations such as HSBC, RBS, and Direct Line Group. He then went on setting up a number of businesses.

Data protection regulations affect almost all aspects of digital marketing. Therefore, DMI has produced a short course on GDPR for all of our students. If you wish to learn more about GDPR, you can do so here:

DMI Short Course: GDPR

If you are interested in learning more about Big Data and Analytics, the DMI has produced a short course on the subject for all of our students. You can access this content here:

DMI Short Course: Analytics

The following pieces of content from the Digital Marketing Institute's Membership Library have been chosen to offer additional material that you might find interesting or insightful.

You can find more information and content like this on the Digital Marketing Institute's Membership Library

You will not be assessed on the content in these short courses in your final exam.


Big Data and Analytics
Richie Mehta
Skills Expert

This module dives deep into data and analytics – two critical facets of digital marketing and digital strategy. It begins with topics on data cleansing and preparation, the different types of data, the differences between data, information, and knowledge, and data management systems. It covers best practices on collecting and processing data, big data, machine learning, open and private data, data uploads, and data storage. The module concludes with topics on data-driven decision making, artificial intelligence, data visualization and reporting, and the key topic of data protection.