2019 Letter From the President

Terri L. Bartlett, President Terri L. Bartlett

In the life of every organization, there are ups and downs, and occasionally challenges that reveal a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for transformation. We at Marketing EDGE are experiencing this opportunity now, and I wanted you to hear it directly from me, in hopes that your involvement with us, and support for our mission, inspired you to join us on our journey.

Many of you have been asking about Marketing EDGE’s status following news of the Association of National 

Advertisers' (ANA) acquisition of the Data & Marketing Association (DMA), effective July 1. Given our 53-year relationship, this development had a major impact on us. After an in-depth review and consideration of strategic alternatives, our Board of Trustees voted unanimously to forge an independent path. We’re now operating as an autonomous 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and doubling down on our vision: To Launch the Next Generation of Data-Driven Marketing Leaders.

These developments offer incredible opportunities and some daunting challenges. As we embark on the “New EDGE,” our shared history, our legacy of demonstrated capabilities, and our total commitment to repositioning and strengthening this organization let us envision an expanded future.

As you likely know, for several years now Marketing EDGE has been living through significant changes, due to developments at the DMA as well as the dramatic evolution taking place in the marketplace… changes shared by so many of us. As 2019 kicks off, we recognize an opportunity to focus and scale our mission, capabilities, and assets to better serve you and our broader community, by:

  • taking an even more aggressive role in data-driven, marketing-talent thought leadership;
  • significantly strengthening networking opportunities for those throughout our industry; while
  • expanding our ability to source talent and give you a rich pipeline of “next generation leaders” as we work together to heighten and strengthen our mission to Educate, Develop, Grow, and Employ (EDGE) college students in this field.

As developments took shape over the last few months, we learned of a growing gap in the business landscape; one which we can fill given our specific capabilities. The New EDGE is committed to providing you with a “business home” where you can network, exchange, and explore opportunities.

This bold stance today is possible due to the long-standing support you and so many others throughout the industry have and continue to demonstrate.

I’ve seen the “entrepreneurial DNA” of this industry up close over the last 13 years. There’s a strong link between you, so many of today’s leaders, and those icons who fought tirelessly to create and establish the discipline of direct marketing in the earlier days. I believe these characteristics, the unmistakable spirit that distinguishes professionals in the data-driven marketing community from those throughout the broader marketing and advertising field, are part of what defines and connects us. This is a critical trait that ignites and propels this industry to the forefront of marketing, now and in the foreseeable future.  

As we continue to identify and magnify both the rich legacy and exciting future of our evolving field, we invite you to (re-)join us as we celebrate this rich community and its future generations of leaders through new and expanded programs, events and activities. For now, there are two things I hope you’ll do today to engage with us and our new outlook:

  • Save-the-Date – June 3 | 2019 EDGE Awards: Plan to join us in NYC as we celebrate and network with more than 500 decision makers throughout our community; proceeds from the event directly benefit our mission. (For details, visit EDGEAwards.org and look for news about the honorees in February),
  • Let me hear from you: Whether through social media (LinkedInTwitterFacebookInstagram) and/or directly, I welcome the opportunity…
    • to know more about your specific needs, and
    • to learn how we can continue to engage to be a more vital and relevant partner to you.

Above all else, as we move forward in 2019, I give you my sincere thanks! Over the decades, Marketing EDGE has evolved to meet your – and the industry’s – changing needs and demands, and I thank you for your ongoing support.

Warmest wishes,


Terri L. Bartlett