Privacy and personalization
Turning the “data apocalypse” into a loyalty opportunity
New laws will soon be in effect, privacy settings will be strengthened (hello, iOS 15!), third-party cookies will no longer be used, and private browsing will continue to grow. A climate of fear regarding the use of personal data has obviously taken hold. This battleground between the Internet giants is bound to give a hard time to companies that have invested so much in the last few years in building performance-tracking approaches and teams with expertise and whose primary function is to use customer data for personalization and business growth. “Is this the end of data-driven marketing? This is a question that many businesses are asking as they face this new privacy frontier.
It is definitely not the end of data-driven marketing. In fact, businesses should view this as an opportunity to strengthen the relationships and trust with their customers, use personal data more accurately than ever, and develop an even more personalized customer experience than ever before.
The personal data apocalypse
- Introduction of Bill 64 in Quebec, which is heavily influenced by other global privacy laws, such as the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the California Consumer Protection Act (CCPA) in the United States
- End of third-party cookies announced by Google (postponed to 2024) in the name of protecting consumers’ private data.
- Strengthening privacy settings on mobile devices, including Apple’s iOS 15 operating system update, which requires apps to obtain users’ consent before tracking their data.
Of course, these major changes are a response to the growing demand for greater privacy and security of consumer data. However, they bring a lot of pain to companies that will have an increasingly reduced ability to track users’ behaviour across different websites and online platforms. Companies that rely primarily on Google Analytics suffer a serious reporting setback as its statistics (based on cookies) have begun to appear inaccurately low.
The same is true for email communication management platforms. Don’t be surprised to notice that your email open rates are dropping. This is not the end of email (!); it is mainly because consumers are increasingly adjusting their privacy settings to browse privately.
Some have called this increased focus on data privacy and the end of third-party cookies a “data apocalypse.” However, it is possible for companies to turn this challenge into an opportunity by taking a proactive and strategic approach.
An opportunity to improve a company’s relationship with its customers.
Companies are being forced to reinvent their marketing and advertising strategies, and take into account new personalization factors to send the most relevant messages possible.
The good news is that growing your business with personal data is still possible, without sacrificing consumer trust. Here are 2 great opportunities:
- Establish trustworthy relationships with your customers
- Adopt a model based on proprietary data (first-party data)
1. Establish trustworthy relationships
By asking your customers about their preferences and interests, you collect data they have agreed to share with you. From now on, you will focus on the quality of the information collected, rather than the quantity. This will impact the quality of the customer experience (optimized service, more relevant targeting) and allow you to establish a relationship of trust.
By allowing your customers to define their journeys and communicate the personal data they want to share with you, you will meet their expectations regarding customer experience, and ensure higher satisfaction in return. You’ll also optimize your email engagement (open or click-through rates) and conversion performance by asking your customers how they want to be contacted and their communication preferences.
2. Adopt a model based on proprietary data (first-party data)
First-party data is information a company collects directly from its customers or users. It is the most valuable data, representing a unique advantage over your competitors. Proprietary data can include a wealth of information, such as purchase history, product preferences, demographics and browsing habits.
How can a business acquire first-party data? A loyalty program can be a powerful tool for collecting this type of data. Here are some examples:
- Registration: When customers register for a loyalty program, they typically provide their names, email addresses and other personal information, such as interests, birthdays, etc. This data may be used to personalize their experiences.
- Purchases: A loyalty program can track a customer’s purchase history, including what they buy, how often they buy, and how much they spend. This data can be used to create targeted marketing campaigns and promotions.
- Surveys: Loyalty programs can include surveys or questionnaires to gather more information about their customers’ preferences and behaviours. This data can be used to improve their experience and tailor promotions to individual customers.
- Social networks: Many loyalty programs reward customers who follow them on social media or share their experiences online. This can provide valuable insights into customer behaviours and preferences.
- Online interactions: Loyalty programs can enhance the user experience on your website by seamlessly tracking metrics, including how long a customer browses, what they look at, and how they interact.
A loyalty program is, therefore, an excellent way to strengthen your direct relationship with your customers, to establish a relationship of trust and to continue to personalize their experience, despite the global context of confidentiality and data privatization.
The Holoholo Club loyalty program by OluKai: An elevated brand experience
Thanks to the implementation of comprehensive customer profiling, OluKai can ask members about their communication preferences and personal interests and tastes to offer them products and content that match what they want to receive.
This approach enables OluKai to directly access valuable data on what members prefer—all while prioritizing transparency and privacy, as the information was provided voluntarily. OluKai exceeds customer expectations and satisfaction by providing an elevated and personalized experience with the brand.
Do you want to establish a direct relationship with your customers and collect personal data for personalization purposes? As loyalty experts, we offer strategic and operational support for companies that want to be proactive and stand out. Contact us to find out more.