6 Privacy-First Marketing Challenges for Brands

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In earlier days of digital marketing, aggregated data was an excellent way of making powerful investment decisions. However, over the past years, technology has evolved to a point where the name of the game is user-level data. 

Marketing is changing, and the only marketers who fail to succeed nowadays are those who still stick to traditional work methods. But make no mistake about it; every time requires a different approach. 

Well, let’s not waste any more time because, in this article, we will discover the top privacy-first marketing challenges for brands. 

6 Privacy-first marketing challenges for businesses 

1. Data and user privacy 

Digital marketing has changed in the past 20 years and will keep changing, especially with the introduction of privacy-first marketing. For example, 20 years ago, many people didn’t even know the internet and didn’t have cell phones (older generations know better). 

So, marketing to a worldwide audience wasn’t as easy as it is now. Nevertheless, collecting data wasn’t a trend as it is now. For example, long ago, Google Chrome, Firefox, and Safari came together. Furthermore, many even think that Google’s mobile device identified (GAID) might fade away after some time. 

However, it isn’t only about technical changes and business strategies; the legislation also plays an important role here. Virtually every marketer can fully speed on the GDPR, CCPA, which continue to act as additional legislation for the national U.S legislation. 

2. Measuring marketing performance 

Measuring market performance is definitely not as easy as it once was. Only some years ago, Apple released an ad tracking limit. Safari's limited market share has only managed to increase the shares of Google Chrome, which accounts for 65% of the global shares as of now, which got rid of the third-party cookie, and Android switched from GAID to Google’s install referrer. 

Nevertheless, it has been hard for marketers to measure their performance, knowing that many devices are starting to block ads. In fact, according to statistics, there are more than 750 million ad blockers across the world. 

All of this is strongly impacting marketing and advertising. After all, if you can’t track people and devices around the web and mobile with GAIDs, IDFAs, and cookies, how will you know if your ads worked or not? 

Retargeting is going to become a major challenge, and the ways how you can monitor it are only going to get much more challenging. In this case, first-party data will remain, but not many companies worldwide can have the same reach as large companies like Apple, Samsung, Google, and more. For example, Apple has its own app store; in this case, it can survive independently. 

Pretty challenging for marketers, so what is the best option to follow? Here are a few tips you, as a marketer, can consider. 

  • Promote privacy-safe mobile attributions: The world is going digital, and we can say goodbye to traditional marketing because if something isn’t digital nowadays, it may as well not be that effective. Decades ago, marketers had advertising IDs without permission, but that isn’t the case anymore. 
  • Adapt to contextual: One of the best things marketers ever had was the ability to track devices and their audience. However, in terms of privacy, this is not such a good thing to look forward to. With much less accessibility to an audience, even large platforms like Google and Facebook will have difficulties and have some degradation in data visibility. 
  • Acquire customers, not only users: Whenever you market in a privacy-safe world, it’s essential to acquire customers, not only users. Customers are acquired once they have a sense of trust and when you offer them decisions they can make, such as signing up, registering, purchasing, and more. 
  • Media mix modeling: After you gather the necessary data, you can begin incrementality testing. You can start running regression tests, use variables, and more. 

3. Adaptation

Older marketing strategies are becoming history, and new skill sets are just as important. The world is evolving, so marketing has to do the same. Marketing in the 2020s is not about tracking every step in the customer journey but also measuring marketing activity with a sales impact. Now, old methods are being replaced by privacy-safe alternatives, such as aggregated attribution and probabilistic global attribution. 

The correlation between the lower and upper funnel won’t ever be the same. However, with time passing by each day, it isn’t a surprise that we still didn’t succeed well enough in tracking and taking the necessary actions into account. 

Visibility has changed, so our attribution needs to do the same. Moreover, most marketers have learned one thing: continuous learning and adaptation matter the most in new conditions. So, nothing is really changing, but we are instead adapting. 

4. Balancing it out 

Most brands fail in broadening the scope of their marketing strategy, ensuring that customers are happy to share their personal data in exchange for a better experience (personalization) and even those who aren’t so comfortable sharing this type of information. 

So, you have to balance consumer privacy with personalization, but this is an area where many organizations fail to do so. The best marketer is one who knows how to give several responses to their target customers

5. Better define personalization 

A lot of organizations struggle to properly define the term “Personalization.” Many customers will appreciate an ad that is specifically designed for them by using their first name, while others may find enjoyment in something different

Therefore, brands should be able to better define their personalization levels by the type of data they gather and create unforgettable experiences. 

6. Measurement and attribution 

With many anonymous data and sources available, marketers will isolate and explore the mechanisms between different variables to find the natural causes of a trend. Nevertheless, this is a special puzzle that comes together, helping marketers make better decisions, not poor ones. 

A few solutions to privacy-first marketing challenges 

The DRM approach 

To be effective and sustainable long-term, brands should consider approaching data with a stronger bond between them and their customers built on a genuine exchange of value. The DRM approach has four primary components, which are: 

  • Data dialogue 
  • Data security center 
  • Data invitation 
  • Data value proposition 

Companies that can get these right have much better access to first-party data. 

Data invitation

Companies must be held accountable for every action in today's data world. For instance, Apple included a push for overt language that resolves data permissions, so it won’t encourage customers to say “Yes” to each request blindly. These standards make it easier for customers to comprehend and even to be tracked by marketers. However, here are some powerful data invitation practices you can undertake: 

  • Preprompts: define all the benefits the customer will receive when granting permission for data sharing before you ask them to make a final decision. 
  • Use Layman’s terms: Use the same language you would use when inviting to a loyalty program. 
  • Leverage: Messaging customers where they are most likely to see a company’s message, such as an SMS, email, push notification, rather than only having to use a single channel to communicate. 

Data value proposition 

Customer value is above everything else, and your data relationship will significantly depend on the type of value proposition you offer your customers. For example, 76% of customers claim that they are comfortable sharing their data, but if their data is used correctly and has a good value proposition. 

However, value exchange isn’t always something easy to demonstrate and usually requires customer data collection. Real value creation depends on the strategic thinking of the brand and the development of new benefits. However, keep in mind that it is strictly forbidden by the CCPA to exclude customers from any services and discounts only because they have an opt-out from data collection. 

There are several ways you can exchange values with your customers, and one of the most popular ways is to offer them discounts and options they can consider. Who wouldn’t be excited to get a special offer, right? 

Therefore, improving the customer experience is a new way of delivering the right amount of value proposition. Data is used for improving customer experiences and helping them find more of what they want. So, if you want to be ahead of the world, build better relationships with your customers. 

Wrapping it all up

That’s all for this article. We have come to an end regarding privacy-first marketing challenges. As we said before, the world is continuously changing, and there are new things we have to look forward to learning. Therefore, it’s important to carefully monitor what changes are made in the data privacy world and to make new amendments each time. 

About the author: 

Tony Ademi is a freelance SEO content and copywriter. He has been in the writing industry (sic) for three years and has managed to write hundreds of SEO-optimized articles. Moreover, he has written articles that have ranked #1 on Google. Tony’s primary concern when writing an article is to do extensive research before writing and ensure that the reader is engaged until the end.


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