Privacy and Marketing part 2 Bookmark has been added
Privacy and Marketing part 2
The Puzzle of the Online Privacy Experience - when Marketing and Privacy meet
Welcome to the second blog in the Privacy and Marketing series! In our first blog, we wrote about why organizations should choose a more consumer-friendly approach to the online privacy experience. Currently, many organizations have not yet found a user-friendly balance between legal compliance and marketing objectives. In this blog, we explore why finding this balance is often complicated.
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- Marketing practices vs. Privacy principles
- Branding vs. Privacy information
- Personalization vs. consent
- Cookie acceptance vs. compliance
- Striking the balance
Marketing practices vs. Privacy principles
Consumer-oriented marketers have focused on using data to learn more about consumers and to communicate with them in personalized ways. Placing cookies, pixels and other trackers to collect data within a user’s web browser or anywhere else on their device has become a common approach for Marketing teams to better understand what consumers want. Data-driven knowledge on user preferences is key to the success of marketing campaigns. In other words, data is extremely valuable to organizations and many would like to capture as much data as possible, even if its specific value may only become clear at a later stage or in combination with other datasets.
Privacy principles, on the other hand, create boundaries on the use and re-use of personal data. For example, basic privacy principles require that only the minimum data necessary is collected, for a specific purpose. Collecting data without knowing its specific value in advance is not permissible. In addition, data practices are increasingly under societal scrutiny. Marketers may find that this challenges their traditional ways of collecting data.
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Branding vs. Privacy information
Most organizations invest large sums into their online presence and have highly specialized teams that focus on online branding, online communication, and the personalization of online services. On the other hand, privacy information pages and pop-ups are not traditionally considered to be a core part of the online experience - quite the contrary, they are more of a “necessary evil”.
In our previous blog, we already highlighted that this may not only create an unpleasant user experience, but that it also contradicts with the spirit of privacy legislation. If users have to keep agreeing to cookies, they may eventually do so without thinking about the consequences – giving up the notion of true consent.
Personalization meets consent
Consent, as positioned by privacy legislation, is a way for consumers to exercise control over the personal data they share with organizations. Users are empowered to give, withdraw, or withhold consent. They must be free to determine whether they are tempted by the personalized experiences marketing teams promise.
For marketers, this creates a level of unpredictability. After all, they need user consent to be able to place cookies to collect the data they need for their campaigns. Making consumer choices more predictable through nudging (for example, through the use of colors that point the user towards a preferred choice), is an option increasingly used by marketing teams. While this creates its own ethical and legal challenges, it is a way of increasing the rate at which consumers agree to cookies, i.e. the cookie acceptance rate.
Cookie acceptance vs. compliance
Many organizations struggle to balance privacy compliance and cookie acceptance rates. In exchange for higher cookie acceptance rates, some organizations may be willing to be in a greyer area of compliance. Differences in risk appetite and privacy strategy can be reflected in the cookie experience and privacy interface on their websites. For example, despite the fact that forcing users to accept cookies before they can enter a site is commonly considered incompatible with privacy rules, these so-called cookie walls are still a frequent occurrence.
Organizations may accept the risk of fines and reputational damage. However, this is costly in the long run and investing in privacy can have significant ROI. Cookie acceptance rates could also be increased through reducing legal jargon, improve tone-of-voice and make it visual more appealing so it turns into a user experience that builds customer trust. Through methods such A/B testing, it is possible to find the most effective way of presenting the information. Having only the legally required cookie choices and keeping things simple facilitate a consumer’s navigation through the “cookie forest”, providing a better user experience.
Striking the balance
Making the online privacy experience more transparent and user-friendly means addressing a number of misunderstandings and covering different requirements. Understanding the dilemmas and conflicting objectives could help organizations integrate a better approach to obtaining cookie consent into their corporate or business unit strategies.
Bringing Privacy and Marketing teams together allows organizations to adopt a more comprehensive approach to online advertising. Marketers should be actively encouraged to use their creativity when asking and getting consent in a privacy- and user-friendly way. In combination with new, automated tooling, aligning marketing and privacy goals will result in better transparency and control online. When privacy and marketing meet to work on that common goal, consumer trust and long-term ROI in privacy investments will follow.
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For more information about our 'Privacy and Marketing' services please contact Jeroen van den Nieuwenhof or Annika Sponselee via the contact details below.