Last updated: Customer data privacy trends: Building trust, post-pandemic

Customer data privacy trends: Building trust, post-pandemic


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I’m sure a vast majority of people are completely sick of hearing the term “social distancing.” Nevertheless, customers want to be “socially distant” from the data that organizations are collecting about them. They want to be in control and they want data privacy. Can we blame them?

As pandemic restrictions are lifted and businesses rebound, customer data privacy and trust has become top-of-mind for companies focused on customer experience.

There are three key trends in how businesses can work to improve data privacy and CX:

  1. Band together all customer data sources
  2. Have real respect for data privacy
  3. Provide value for customers who share their data

Let’s dig a little deeper.

Smart start: Unify data sources to improve customer data privacy

In the digital age, it’s almost impossible to collect customer data without the help of AI and machine learning. The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic increased the need for a customer data platform.

What’s keeping businesses from adopting CDP and using AI and ML to their advantage?

Data collection has come a long way. We’ve shifted from collecting data with pen and paper to Word documents and spreadsheets. Now, automated solutions provide a vast amount of data at the click of a button. So, the good news is, customer data is trending in the right direction, but not everywhere. Brands without a CDP solution are housing data all over the place – 62% of US retailers have more than 50 systems storing their customer data.

This means there’s more work to be done. One bridge has been crossed as many organizations have learned what a CDP is. The next step is leaving old ways behind. No more siloed data in more places than you have strands of hair. It’s time to unify that data into one single source of truth.

Unifying customer data produces an exclusive view of the customer, including how they interacted with a brand, the products purchased, and events attended.

The pay-off of eliminating data silos: increased privacy protection, seamless operations, and better brand personalization, which ultimately improves the user experience to build customer loyalty.

R-E-S-P-E-C-T: Find out what it means to me

In talking about customer data privacy, it just wouldn’t be right if I didn’t reference the queen of R&B and soul, Aretha Franklin, and her signature song. I also like to refer to the classic as the national anthem for showing others kindness.

Now, how might we ensure that customers feel respected and that their information is protected in the hands of an organization they want to build trust with? Let me break it down for you:

  • Let customers be in control of what data is shared
  • Make your privacy policy easy enough for a first-grader to understand
  • Be transparent about each piece of information that you collect or wish to collect
  • Be sure to give customers the ability to opt out of sharing their data
  • Give customers the option to delete their data if they choose to do so
  • Stay abreast of GDPR

The customer experience depends on this. Just remember, customers are more in control now and trust doesn’t always come easy. It needs to be built.

Deliver value in data sharing

A shocking report revealed that data breaches jumped 68% in 2021, shattering records. That’s enough to get the ball rolling on protecting customers, and their data, and preventing cyberattacks.

A breach of customer data privacy can go viral quickly. On social media, we routinely read about the latest cyberattacks and who’s been hacked.

Customers are well aware of the risks to their data. This means they need to know what they’ll get in exchange for sharing their precious data.

Why would anyone eat cake if it didn’t taste good? That’s the type of value consumers need to be made aware of.

Forrester notes that one consumer isn’t equally motivated by discounts and cash rewards as another. In this case, customer surveys are like Willy Wonka’s golden ticket. The goal is to better understand the customer and the experience they crave, and the key is to put that data in motion as a driver to building trust.

Customer data privacy: Welcome to the future of CX

Consumers know what they want, and if they don’t get it, they go elsewhere. This is truer than ever in the wake of the pandemic. Businesses need to keep up with the latest trends and build a strategy for managing customer data.

With a solid CDP in place, the key takeaways leave us with knowledge that data silos will be unified into one place that provide better data accuracy and transparency into customer insights, the consumer also feels respected as they now have more control over what data is shared, and the consumer can realize the true value in the brand in exchange for their data.

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