The Digital Media and Marketing Association (DMMA) recently announced its areas of focus for each of its portfolios in 2013, in its ongoing effort to build and sustain a vibrant and profitable digital community across Southern Africa.
This year has seen a change in the formation structure of the committee, with a Steering Committee replacing the former Executive Committee. Jarred Cinman, newly appointed Chairman of the Steerco, explains: “The DMMA Board, in the Section 21 structure, will be ratified by members annually. It is important to say that we have no intention of removing the members’ oversight over the actions of the Board or Committee, but we need a more agile and focussed model to cope with the workload. This new structure is an attempt to have a more engaged and committed team leading the organisation.”
Key Projects for each DMMA portfolio in 2013:
The Measurement Portfolio manages the DMMA’s relationship with the digital measurement provider and is responsible for ensuring that the relationship between publishers and media planners remains strong and healthy. This year, the DMMA has committed to re-assessing the measurement model to incorporate mobile and streaming media metrics, in an effort to increase ad spend and ensure that publishers’ interests are better served. The DMMA will also be investigating opportunities for potential collaboration with educational institutions in order to establish official digital media planning programmes.
The Publishing portfolio is a core focus within the DMMA’s scope of activity. While the DMMA rebranded from the Online Publishers Association (OPA) several years ago in an effort to broaden its member base, it remains completely committed to publisher members. The DMMA has undertaken to increase its focus on assisting publishers in meeting their revenue aspirations in 2013, and will also remain a trusted provider of traffic and user data for publisher members. The DMMA will collaborate closely with the Measurement portfolio to ensure that publishers’ interests are served and will engage members on a regular basis to understand where their greatest needs lie.
The portfolio will continue to conduct market research with the aim of providing valuable insight and data to members and the larger market. The intention is to provide ongoing research into the internet-using population in addition to revisiting the advertising spend research conducted in 2011.
The DMMA also has a representative on the SAARF Board and the SAARF Future Proofing Committee, which is the DMMA’s link to AMPS. “This is a complex space in which representatives from most major media channels are trying to agree on a single audience measurement standard for the years to come. This is a long process but the DMMA has a strong voice in the process,” says Cinman.
The DMMA has been tasked with appointing the digital Loeries judging panel, as well as defining certain category criteria. The DMMA also has representation on the Creative Circle Ad of the Year Awards, to ensure that the judging and ceremony runs smoothly.
Another key focus area will be the negotiation of bulk discounts for travel and software for members.
“The digital industry, we believe, is in desperate need of transformation. From a skills point of view, digital is struggling across the board to attract the right talent,” explains Cinman. “Therefore, one of our goals is to establish an accredited digital qualification within key educational institutions.”
While not a regulatory body, the DMMA is regularly consulted for advice in matters pertaining to legislation within the digital space, which is why a Regulatory portfolio was established. In 2013, the DMMA aims to offer workshops which will assist in un-packing new legislation and its implications for the industry. “It is not our intention to act like a regulatory body, but we do wish to offer guidance to our members wherever possible,” explains Cinman.
The Marketing Portfolio is the interface between the DMMA, its members and the market at large. Priorities for this year include enhancing education sessions with members, as well as improving member newsletters to carry more relevant and insightful content.
The newly-created Liaison portfolio will focus on forging ties with other industry organisations both in the advertising and publishing worlds, with the aim of providing members with a comprehensive view of thelandscape.
Cinman concludes: “Having worked in the industry for nearly 17 years, I have seen digital go from being the ugly stepchild to the popular kid everyone secretly wants to be. Digital’s time is now. Digital agencies are being acquired and integrated into traditional advertising groups; and online publishers are playing a more and more important part in media schedules across the board. It is the role of the DMMA to evolve the market, to grow the advertising spend, and to help everyone understand the power of what digital is all about. I am excited.”