A recent survey released by the McCann Worldwide Group indicates that consumers are willing to share their shopping habits (and other data such as location) with brands and businesses they trust.
Seven out of 10 consumers surveyed indicated that they were willing to share data regarding their purchases and shopping habits with companies. This information is of vital importance when companies are planning for the future. Brands can use it to offer more segmented and personalized offers and content.
While consumers are willing to share their information, they do require reassurance that their information will not be misused. It is a matter of trust.
Responding to the privacy questions of consumers: deliver on your promises
Respected businesses and brands have the loyalty of their best customers if they have a good customer-centric strategy. It should be an easy matter to transform that loyalty into trust. They can accomplish this by delivering on their promises and never selling information to third parties.
If a company promises an incentive for answering survey questions, it should make sure they consistently deliver and over deliver on that promise. A business that delivers on their promises is a company that can be trusted.
Consumers want to know how their information will be used. While they are not as sensitive about their shopping habits as they are about their financial information, they still feel the need to retain their privacy, McCann found.
Brands should clearly state how any information collected is to be used. This will remove any lingering reservations the consumers might have.
Gathering customer data: what's in it for them?
56 percent of all consumers surveyed indicated that a commitment from the company not to share their information with a third party was of critical importance. 55 percent indicated that they would like some measure of control over how their information is shared, and 30 percent felt that before they shared any information they would need to know how it would directly benefit them.
Consumers respond to incentives and are more willing to share information if they can see a potential benefit. This is only human nature. Direct incentives such as coupons, sales alerts or other incentives are a powerful way to entice consumers to share their habits, but less tangible incentives also have value.
Consumers will share information if they believe that it will improve their overall shopping experience in the future. They love to share their opinions. If they feel that a company will listen to them and act upon their suggestions, they are more likely to respond to any consumer data gathering efforts.
If a company is interested in collecting market data from their consumers, they must reassure their customers that their information will not be misused and that the consumers themselves will receive some benefit from participating.
Gathering the right customer data, regardless of channels and touch points is a must in a customer-centric and cross-channel approach whereby the customer, subscriber or prospect is the trigger of interactions.
A single customer view that combines behavioural data with shopping data, demographic data and digital footprints as discovered in previous interactions, enables you to provide a valuable, segmented, personalized and even individual customer experience.
Communication channels depend on the consumer and marketing is about engaging the cross-channel customer and prospect throughout integrated dialogues that are driven by his/her buying journey, preferences, triggers, signals and behaviour.
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