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Consumers want brands to be more upfront about data use

25th Aug 2014
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It may well be that half of us don’t really care about how our data gets used, but those who do care want brands to be more open and honest about it.

There is a growing call for consumers to take control of their own data via personal information management services (PIMS), especially in the UK, where the market for PIMS “could be worth up to £16.5bn a year”. However, many believe a better solution is for brands to offer more up-front information on exactly how they plan to use customer data in the first place; especially in respect to social data, which businesses tend to take for granted.

A study commissioned by Intent HQ of over 2,000 consumers found that 79% of people now believe they are more likely to be trusting of a brand that “gathers data via a social login”, as opposed to using behind-the-scenes cookies to collect information.

It appears data-driven personalised adverts don’t always work either: 86% of the survey participants stated they didn’t like online advertising that has been personalised through data from cookies, either “ignoring the ads, finding them irritating or feeling as though they are intruding on their privacy”.

59% said that providing basic login details in return for personalised offers and information was a “fair deal”.

As the use of consumer data becomes more and more sophisticated, so people are seemingly becoming more aware of data privacy and how their personal information is being protected. The value exchange involved in giving up data is far more considered; while 84% of the Intent HQ study said they were concerned about online privacy, almost half (47%) admitted that this doesn’t stop them giving personal details if they want certain information.

“Consumers have had enough of the blunt-edged personalisation of ads and content targeted using cookie data,” said Jonathan Lakin, CEO of Intent HQ.

“Consequently, advertisers and publishers are now increasingly using permission-based social logins to collect this information. By combining this with online behavioural data and then applying sophisticated new methods involving artificial intelligence to target ads and content more accurately, they are enjoying a dramatic rise in conversion rates.”

A recent Forrester study stated that many brands were already sailing too close to the wind when it came to the over-personalisation of digital promotions, coining the phrase ‘digital creepiness’ and suggesting that too much data-driven personalisation was likely to lead to consumer loyalty being tested.   

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