November 4, 2019 – Today the UK Data & Marketing Association can announce that its Institute of Data & Marketing (IDM) has developed several new online learning products, ‘The Professional Certificate in Social Media’, and the ‘Award in GDPR’.

Recent DMA research has found that marketers identified social media and GDPR as key areas that will be vital to the future of the industry.

The IDM has listened to marketer demand by enhancing these online learning solutions as part of a wider initiative to make online learning as effective as face-to-face training.

Andy Dorling, general manager, the IDM said: “Our industry never stands still, and so businesses and their marketers must be equipped with the latest skills and insights that reflect the evolving demands of the customer. Research by the DMA has found that marketers want learning solutions to be relevant, practical and interactive – our revamped online training puts these themes at its very core.”

Why Social Media and GDPR?

The ‘Data Privacy: An Industry Perspective 2019’ report found that a fifth of marketers (20%) say their organisations are not implementing ongoing GDPR training plans, thereby putting their businesses at an additional risk of non-compliance.

In addition, 18% of marketers say the GDPR expert they were originally trained by didn’t have the right experience in marketing, with almost one in 10 (9%) saying their internal company training hasn’t been practical enough to date.

“The majority of data and marketing professionals have been given some form of GDPR training. However, when marketing teams are formulating integrated marketing campaigns and collecting, processing and segmenting sensitive information, they need to not only understand their responsibilities, but also how data can be a huge asset to the business, and most importantly, how they can protect the customer and build trust.”

The ‘Business Skills Census 2019’, asked marketers to identify the skills and challenges that are important to businesses today, as well as those that will be in the future.

From a total of 33 skills investigated in the research, several skills were deemed less important to current business success by the majority of marketers, ‘Social media’ (46%) and ‘Direct marketing’ (40%).

However, when asked what skills will be important to the future success of their business, both ‘Direct marketing’ and ‘Social media’ saw the most significant increases noted in the survey, rising to 86% and 88% respectively, highlighting their importance in the future.

Dorling summarised: “The role of social media will become increasingly multi-faceted in the future. In that it will become a source for daily news, peer-to-peer communication, a complaints platform, and most importantly, a valuable medium to interact with your favourite brands. Marketers must use this opportunity to effectively engage with both prospects and existing customers while ensuring they communicate the brand’s core values.

To find out more about the advantages of online learning, check out the IDM’s latest blog.