Jodie Sangster


Companies should report data breaches when necessary: ADMA boss

7:03PM | Sunday, 27 July

The head of the Association for Data-driven Marketing and Advertising (ADMA), Jodie Sangster, has clarified her position on mandatory reporting of data breaches, telling SmartCompany it is a company’s responsibility to report a breach only if it puts consumers at risk.   Sangster’s comments come as mandatory reporting is again put in the spotlight afterCatch of the Day last week reported a data breach three years after it took place.   Mumbrella recently reported Sangster had warned against mandatory reporting, as it may see consumers unnecessarily “flooded” with reports that their personal details may have been compromised.   “On the question of whether or not ADMA supports mandatory reporting, the position we take is, if it’s going to be mandatory, we need to set a sensible benchmark,” says Sangster.   “If you set the threshold too low, consumers may be unnecessarily alarmed if they are not at risk.”   Sangster says if there are any circumstances in the data breach that present a risk to consumer’s security, then it is “best practice” for a company to report the breach to those affected.   But she says if the breach does not put consumers at risk, then it is not necessary to report it.   Even accidently ‘cc-ing’ email addresses in an email – rather than ‘bcc-ing’ them – is considered a data breach, according to Sangster. She says reporting such small data breaches would dilute the meaning of the warning in the event of a serious data breach.   Sangster says there is no need for business to add extra red tape in reporting all data breaches, but companies should be aware they have a responsibility to protect data and should abide by this best practice.   While the best practice is currently in ADMA’s code of conduct, legislation against data breach reporting has failed to pass the federal parliament several times.   Sangster says this is because the Privacy Commission’s guidelines are currently working.   “Let’s introduce legislation when we do have problem,” she says.   “Are there daily data breaches happening? Probably not. Are there incidences where companies need to tighten security? Absolutely.”   In regard to Catch of the Day’s recent move to report a breach three years after the fact, Sangster says she is not aware of the reason the company would only now decide it should tell its customers.   “Catch of the Day has said there was no risk to consumers. I’m not sure why they waited three years, there must be a reason, but I don’t know what that reason is,” she says.   This article originally appeared on Smart Company.   Image credit: Flickr/altemark

ADMA report warns marketers on perils of prying

5:24AM | Tuesday, 6 May

Customers don’t trust businesses pushing personal information boundaries or selling it for financial benefit, according to a report published yesterday by the Association for Data-driven Marketing and Advertising.   The ADMA report reveals while consumers are willing to share personal information with businesses which demonstrate “good behaviour”, people don’t trust businesses asking for too much personal data.   The survey of more than 1600 Australians shows 77% won’t share personal details when asked for too much information, while 70% of people also won’t give information to companies found to breach data security.   ADMA chief executive Jodie Sangster says company behaviour trumps branding.   “You can have an amazing company brand or a well-recognised company brand, but that’s not going to be enough to convince us as consumers that you’re going to do the right thing with data,” she says.   Sangster says businesses must ensure customers understand how personal information will be used.   “It’s not that they’re uncomfortable with companies sharing data; it’s that they’re uncomfortable that they don’t know that data’s going to be shared or who it’s going to be shared with.”   “Gone are the days where you can just have a long privacy policy and hope that customers will read it and understand it,” she says.   Companies should also avoid collecting too much information, too soon.   “You don’t need everything up front straight away. As the relationship develops, the data will become richer."   "Over time, have a strategy increasing the depth and the value of the data,” says Sangster.   Head of Marketing Angels, Michelle Gamble, says larger companies can learn from SMEs, who are less intrusive with marketing, relying instead on strong customer relationships and service.   “I think when you’re smaller you can be really authentic in your relationships with your customers. That’s what larger businesses have a lot more trouble replicating when it comes to communication with customers,” she says.   Consumers are most likely to trust government bodies and banks with personal data. But people trust mortgage providers, charities, online retailers, and entertainment companies and media outlets the least with personal details.   “Those types of companies have traditionally used data for a very specific purpose and not necessarily for costumer engagement.”   “So it’s a change of mindset that’s required for the companies that are less experienced in using data, to use it to create customer engagement, not just for specific business-focused purposes,” says Sangster.   This article first appeared on SmartCompany.

Content marketing isn’t a buzz word, it’s here to stay

8:24AM | Tuesday, 20 August

Creating compelling content that builds audiences is an important marketing pillar for anyone starting out in business.   Known as content marketing, custom media, custom publishing, branded content and branded media, this style of marketing is particularly important given consumers are increasingly seeking out information they can trust.   Content marketing enables businesses to deliver content via tutorials, email newsletters, white papers, custom publications, ebooks, free reports, blogs or social media.   Anyone can create relevant content that spruiks their business. If you’re a landscape gardener launching your own business, you could own a niche audience of followers keen to hear your thoughts on drought-resistant gardens, for example.   Content marketing is the way of the future, says the chief executive of the Association for Data-Driven Marketing and Advertising, Jodie Sangster.   “The future of marketing is content marketing. The convergence of data, technology, new consumer consumption habits and digital distribution mean the business case for content marketing has never been more compelling.”   Craig Hodges, chief executive and founder of King Content says content marketing has been around forever. It works best for companies that want to drive leads and sales, working across multiple sectors from banking and finance to fast moving consumer goods, he says.   “It’s not something that has developed in the last couple of months, as many people might think. The real game changer has been the transformation in the way consumers find brands and ‘stuff’ in general.   “Google has played an integral role in this by determining they wanted a search engine free of keyword-stuffed landing pages, instead ranking quality sites with great content,” Hodges says.   This has encouraged brands to begin investing in owned, searchable content assets that are of value to the consumer and share the essence of what the brand stands for through storytelling, he says.   “If you couple this with the role of social media, a powerful sharing and amplification tool, it’s easy to see why there has been such a focus on developing quality content marketing strategies.”   Content marketing works well for new online homewares/linen store, I Love Linen.   Melbourne founder Lauren Roe has had strong results from Facebook despite the brand only launching a few months ago.   “A great Facebook strategy is based on engaging with customers and promoting a certain image around a desired lifestyle and then finding ways to link it back to your products,” Roe says. One of her recent posts was shared by a popular blogger with a huge Facebook following, which resulted in a day of high traffic and sales, she says.   “It’s so easy to manage because once you have a good content strategy and you know the themes around how you want to post, then you can pre-source and pre-load all the content. We do this once a week so it’s locked and loaded so we don’t have to think of content ideas on the fly,” Roe says.   “I know Facebook works because I track the click-throughs from Google Analytics and can track the purchase journey that way. A great example is a customer that I generated via Facebook has purchased with us three times in just under six weeks,” she says.   Content marketing is also a key marketing pillar for Intrepid Travel, with content partnerships forged to develop content that will appeal to potential customers.   One of its most successful partnerships has been with sustainable food filmmakers The Perennial Plate. This partnership sent two chefs to 13 countries to create short videos that reflect local food culture, which aligns with Intrepid’s new range of food adventures and commitment to responsible and sustainable travel.   “The videos are authentic and compelling and each has its own distribution strategy. The first video that was produced received over 300,000 views and the series so far has been viewed by 2.75 million,” global public relations manager Eliza Anderson says.   Many start-ups already embark on a PR campaign, but minor tweaks to existing PR, communications and social media content isn’t the same thing as content marketing, according to a report by technology research firm Gartner.   Hiring freelance writers to create your content, create a pipeline of talent via online freelance marketplaces like elance or outsource your newsroom can be great ways to get the content you need, says Gartner analyst Jake Sorofman.   Ultimately, businesses need to decide what end result they want to achieve from content marketing from the outset, he says.   “Do you want to create blog posts, build a special website or blog, or generate Facebook comments or Tweets? Ensure that whatever content management system you are using can create content forms that match your goals. Also ensure that each asset you generate can be shared socially,” Sorofman says.   But creating content is one thing. Making sure it’s reaching an audience is something else altogether. Distribution of content is a major issue, according to a recent roundtable forum held in Sydney.   Hosted by ADMA and content marketing firm Edge, it found that many businesses overlook the importance of developing distribution strategies.   Care needs to be taken when it comes to distribution as distribution via social media can turn consumers off, according to a recent report by Pitney Bowes Software. It found that 83% of consumers have had a bad social media marketing experience.   Simon Bird, general manager Australia, warns that annoying customers can mean lost revenue, with 65% of consumers saying they’d stop using a brand that upset or irritated them through its social media behaviour.   “It’s critical for businesses to develop an in-depth understanding of their customers’ communications preferences and what makes them tick. You need to approach customers through the channels they like and with content that is relevant to them and their current situation.”   Five tips to help start-ups thrive in the age of content   Create brand ambassadors. Use Twitter Advanced Search to find people who are talking about similar offerings to yours. Contact them and get them excited about your brand   Understand and track your SEO. Use free Google tools like Adwords, Analytics and Trends to compare keywords, view keyword search traffic demand and find out if your keywords are converting traffic   Take advantage of hashtags. Simple and consistent hashtags like #apps help your target market find your start-up. Use social dashboard tools like HootSuite or TweetDeck to find relevant hashtags.   Find free publicity. Sign up for free services like SourceBottle and HARO, which connect journalists with sources to easily and cheaply build a reputation in your industry.   Protect your reputation before you have one. Use free tools like Google Alerts and to find out what is being said about your company, competitors and industry.   Source: Ali Berg, head of content, Online Circle Digital

Australia’s five key online marketing trends in pictures

10:55AM | Thursday, 18 October

While around half of Australia’s small businesses still do not have a website, it appears that those who are keeping pace with the advance of the internet are becoming increasingly savvy in how they use it for marketing purposes.

Privacy Act changes: What your start-up must know

8:41AM | Monday, 6 August

Start-ups are being warned to consider changes to the Privacy Act to avoid unwittingly exposing themselves to massive fines in the crucial set-up phase.

Group buying guide launched for small businesses

3:28AM | Friday, 9 March

Small businesses can now gain greater insight into the group buying channel, with the launch of a business guide designed to complement the Australian Group Buying Code of Conduct.