Wanting privacy for consumer data while providing good marketing strategies seem like two entirely different things. Marketing experts have to use behavioural information on customers to create effective marketing plans. Many people do not understand or provide permission for data to be collected and then used in ways they are not aware of up front.
The major social media platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn delineate the terms of service and how data is used. For the rest of the Internet, privacy and data are still being worked on. Both marketers and consumers need to meet in the middle where technology can improve one’s shopping experience while respecting a person’s right to privacy. Tactics involving this type of online marketing are only one piece of the bigger puzzle.
How can Internet marketers use good digital marketing practices and still respect their customers? How can they build better practices that still give customers the personalization that they really want?
Think about ways you can create more of a dialogue with customers while still engaging them when they are indulging in a shopping experience. Some ways that brands can do this include:
Be Transparent and Build Trust
No one likes getting bombarded by a knock on the door with someone ready to survey them. The sentiment online is the same. While e-mail gets you to the consumer, you need to respect when they receive communications. Let them know when, who, what, why, and where you collect your data.
Let them know how the data gets put into use. A customer that understands how these bits of information will help them all while keeping their privacy secure will trust you more. This leads to a better relationship.
One company that does an excellent job of explaining their services and how the information they get will be used is 23andMe. This company offers a chance to let people include their data for the use in genetic research. They also indicate to customers that they will receive updates about this research. Some of it applies to research on medical conditions and it is of no cost to the consumer.
These permission-based efforts provide value to the customer. They also keep the customer in the loop.
Create First-party Relationships
Your customers are your gatekeepers. Gather their permission by being clear, using quality marketing techniques and by using strong tactics. These cost money, but they are a good way to get to something more valuable and that is a direct connection with each customer.
When you have permission by getting their active consent to take information, you can then use tools to determine how to provide them with true value which is scaled to their individual needs and wants. This part of the sales process starts with the collection of permitted data and ends with creating a more personalised shopping experience both online and offline.
Be Clear About Data Collection
Your customers want to know precisely what their rights are versus what your brand’s reasons are. Create a policy or terms of service page to let them know. Be clear about what data is used, who uses it, who can see it and make sure every detail is in writing. Tell them how long their information will be saved.
Give customers good data management from the start. The idea of offering terms of service is moving from convenient to have to necessary to know.
Let Customers Review Their Data Rights
One part of actively gathering consumer data with their permission is to give them an easy way to view that data. When they can see what you are using and how with their own eyes, they can make corrections as necessary and feel more in control.
This is one thing that builds a better relationship built on trust with your consumers.