DMA relaunches as digital leader

The Direct Marketing Association is repositioning itself as a modern, digitally attuned trade body that is “open, friendly and welcoming” to marketers.


A new logo and user-friendly website that allows members to create bespoke content will launch later this month. A raft of new services, including a social media helpdesk, will be introduced in the coming months to boost the association’s product offering.

The DMA has been criticised in the past for being too wedded to supporting and promoting traditional, physical direct mail and the changes follow an 18-month review of the business. The association wants to emphasise that it is about both traditional and digital direct marketing.

A marketing campaign will launch to trumpet the changes later this year.The body will be hoping that the reluanch shores up existing, and even increases membership.

Chris Combemale, executive director of the DMA, says the site’s “stuffy” feel reflected what many previously thought of the DMA, a “quasi-governmental legal and compliance department” rather than an aid to marketers. The site, he adds, will be written in “more marketer-friendly language”.

Combemale admits that the DMA has not always kept up with the pace of change in a channel that is increasingly about integration and direct marketing via digital means. The changes, and other recent developments, aim to remedy this.

“The DMA did not always react to the way the industry is going. In today’s modern digital channel, everyone is now a direct marketer,” he says.

The trade body has established councils dealing with electronic DM in recent years as well as producing research on mobile marketing.

Combemale says the DMA will look to increase its partnerships with other trade associations following the extension of the DMA-developed data security standard DataSeal.

DataSeal, which was designed to increase consumer confidence in marketers’ use of data was made available to members of the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising, the Incorporated Society of British Advertising and the Institute of Promotional Marketing earlier this year.

Eulogy has been appointed to run PR activity, while a “small” ad budget is available.

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and inspiration that will help you develop as a marketer and leader.

Register and receive the best content from the only title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work, so we can make Marketing Week more relevant to you.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team and columnists will ask the biggest questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we will be your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Dedicated to developing your skills and helping you achieve marketing excellence. Find guidance on leadership, professional development and the latest industry jobs.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3711 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here