If I told you I knew you really well, would you be creeped out or surprised?
We haven’t met. We don’t have any mutual friends in real life. However, I know you very well. So well in fact that I’m going to send you content that ‘may’ interest you daily. You don’t get a choice to opt out. I know you, though, and I’m going to keep sending you stuff until your inbox is overflowing.
How does that make you feel? Annoyed? Angry? Frustrated? That’s because it’s exactly the wrong way to message customers, yet so many organizations don’t have effective privacy and data governance protocols in place. This erodes trust, damages their brand integrity, and can lead to severe financial and legislative penalties down the line. It’s no surprise, therefore, that research shows up to 83% of internet users worldwide are concerned about their data privacy.
Hmm…if only there was a way to control a customer’s profile, accurately track their preferences, and build trust throughout the customer lifecycle, and keep on the right side of the law, protecting the customer experience.
Turns out there is a solution, and it’s called a customer data cloud.
Whose cloud is it anyway: Benefits of a customer data cloud
For companies that are undergoing digital transformation initiatives, being able to scale and remain competitive while implementing omnichannel marketing programs is critical. They require a solution that is centralized and highly scalable; one that can reduce risk, increase opportunity, and improve customer experience.
A customer data cloud allows a business to deliver seamless and secure customer engagements across channels, devices, and regions. It can turn anonymous online visitors into known, loyal customers by helping to build trusted relationships. It’s a cloud-native solution dedicated to managing digital identities, tracking consent and preferences, and delivering personalized experiences powered by first-party data.
All of these capabilities are benefits of a customer data cloud.
Engage early: prepare to stun
According to Forrester, 68% of business buyers prefer to research on their own, online. In addition, 62% finalize their ideal criteria using digital content only, rather than engaging with sales.
That means you need to engage customers early if you want to success. Using a cloud solution to offer simplified registration and log-in workflows can help to capture prospect data at the start of their journey and speed the delivery of personalized, relevant experiences.
Place customers in the driving seat to build trust
For trust to develop, customers typically want two things: transparency and personal data control. According to Accenture, 75% of customers would prefer some control over their data. 70% would like to know how it is being used. This is fair, and due to consumer data privacy regulations such as GDPR in Europe, CCPA in California, and LGPD in Brazil giving power back to the consumer, and increasing concern over privacy scope, organizations need to plan to provide this kind of experience.
This kind of customer-centric thinking not only positions organizations as trustworthy brands, it also helps them avoid massive financial penalties. Look at examples like Facebook to see where to go wrong with gathering data, and how that affects the bottom line. A solution that monitors consent and preferences, enforces this data across channels and regions, and offers customers meaningful control of their personal data will both inspire trust and address key regulatory requirements.
Balancing personalization against the customer experience
Let’s get real. Businesses do need to gather insights. It’s how they stay ahead of their competitors. They achieve these data-driven insights through digital channels: behavioral, social, analytics, web, mobile etc.
Once a system is in place to effectively manage customer data and consent, then formulating a strategy to personalize and move towards individualizing the customer experience becomes much easier. An effective customer data cloud considers information gathered in an omnichannel fashion, creating a detailed permission-based profile that can be capitalized on in the future.
In this hyper-competitive landscape, it’s not enough to merely go through the motions when collecting customer data. Customers are not mere data-points, they’re individuals with unique tastes. Tailoring strategies and using software that ethically manages data collection is the future of customer experience.
Build trust with a global data privacy strategy.
Learn more here.