The introduction of a new Data Transparency Label could help marketers gain a clearer perspective on the quality of the information that is supporting their activity.

David Kohl, president/CEO of TrustX, a programmatic marketplace owned by trade body Digital Content Next, discussed this subject at the 2019 Cross-Platform Video Measurement and Data Summit held by the Coalition for Innovation in Media Measurement (CIMM).

“Audience data is foundational today in all of marketing and media across channels, particularly in digital,” he said. (For more, read WARC’s in-depth report: How Data Transparency Labels could lead to healthier marketing.)

“But for most companies that are buying audience data, [and] that are relying on third-party audience data in particular, there is a large gap between data that’s of quality, data that performs, data that has value, and data which does not.”

Fortunately, help is at hand thanks to the development of the fledgling Data Transparency Label, an initiative that has been embraced by TrustX and a variety of industry groups.

These organizations include the Advertising Research Foundation (ARF), and its CIMM division, as well as the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) and its Data & Marketing Association (DMA) arm the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB).

“Just like an FDA Nutrition Label, the industry’s Data Transparency Label is intended to give every marketer, agency, data provider, and publisher a clear view of the syndicated audience segments they use,” the website explains.

In pursuing this goal, the data label will assess “what” the data is (say, whether it covers “auto intenders” or “soccer moms”), how the information set was constructed, where it came from, and who is included.

When the feedback-gathering process on the provisional label comes to a close at the end of March 2019, the focus then will shift to various councils within the trade bodies that are leading the data-transparency program.

And, drawing on the comments supplied by industry practitioners, these entities will modify the “current proof-of-concept data label,” Kohl asserted, and release an updated version into the marketplace.

Even that achievement, however, will only be part of a much longer “journey” towards securing transparency in the data arena. “The idea behind this first step is it is better than you have today; it is not the nirvana,” said Kohl.

Sourced from WARC