Confusion Reigns Over DMPs And Who Owns Data

Speakers on Monday debated the complexities and sheer challenges posed by DMPs and data -- who owns it, manages it and how to share it -- at MediaPost’s Programmatic Insider Summit.

Despite numerous and varying points of view, one thing the panelists on “The DMP Challenge: Data Ownership, Management, Sharing” could agree on was the amount of confusion marketers have -- even about the questions they should ask agency or ad-tech partners during the RFP process.

Andrew Sandoval, director of programmatic media at The Media Kitchen, asked participants to weigh on in how DMPs save money and deliver ROI. “With DMPs, there are resource savings. We need people who know media and analytics really well.” He noted that his agency has a Data Center of Excellence to focus on DMP, and said that agencies need an internal  “owner” of the DMP. 

“A DMP will save money, but there’s not necessarily an ROI,” said Clayton McLaughlin, VP performance media group director, Havas Media. “From an agency standpoint, the client wants to check off all the boxes. They want to know, how do you fit within their tech stack? Marketers have questions like that.”

Morgan Vawter, senior principal, digital marketing & customer analytics, Accenture, was most concerned with finding ways to manage digital IDs across the Web: “You need a DSP to manage all the data across channels.”



Havas’ McLaughlin said he’s immediately skeptical when he sees DSPs who say they can do everything like attribution and cross-channel and cross-device tracking. “No one is doing it right! As a DMP, I’m skeptical of whether they can do it. You have to do what you’re good at,” he maintained.

Vawter said ultimately the operating model needs to change. A data governance  plan needs to be in place, to determine who gets to ‘play’ in the DMP and what role the agency will play. This should all be done during the RFP process.

 “We need to be smarter about how you’re doing look-a-like modeling,” Vawter said. McLaughlin agreed: Clients often don’t even know what their ideal client looks like.

Ultimately, Vawter would like to see better integrations and DMPs that are open with data, and that work with marketers to build segmentations.

McLaughlin said the onus is on agencies: “Data sits within agencies and marketers in walled gardens. There’s no universal solution in the near term. We need to work toward universal data sharing.” However, second-party data-sharing will likely happen in the next couple of years, Dawter said.

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