Brands are at risk of losing the trust of consumers over the exchange of personal data., according to a survey looking into the types of details customers are willing to share.
The Value Me research – part of Microsoft Advertising’s bi-annual Digital Trends report, uncovered a sharing gap – a 25% difference between what consumers consciously share, and the types of data they believe brands collect anyway, without their explicit consent.
The study reveals differences in the types of personal data consumers are willing to share, with personal information such as their date of birth and address (57%) and basic demographics such as age (50%) topping the list.
The results signal to changing consumer expectations around what they get in return for personal data and how they define value.
Cash rewards are top of the list (61%) while loyalty points for services and products also ranked as highly desirable (59%). However ‘value’ does not need to take monetary form and can be information or entertainment that enhances the online experience.
In fact, one quarter (25%)] of consumers are willing to exchange their data for a more connected and simplified lifestyle, alongside automated processes (27%).
Respondents also perceived advertising as an expected “cost”, one that they prefer to incur over a monthly or one-off fee. Over a third (37%) of respondents say companies should offer services for free when data is collected, whilst nearly a third (32%) would try a new data-powered service, yet see more ads in return. A quarter (28%) of respondent would opt for more information about them to be shared, in place of paying for services.
The report divided poeple up into three key areas:
Owen Sagness, UK General Manager for Microsoft Advertising and Online says: “Data is rapidly becoming a fundamental currency for brand-consumer relationships, with those in the know demanding more from brands in return for use of their personal information. Agencies and brands must commit to respecting boundaries and focusing on using data responsibly to deliver thoughtful experiences to consumers. Those brands that negotiate a better informed and more willing basis for data exchange will succeed in building stronger loyalty and engagement.”
Brands who can offer a clear benefit to data sharing, as well as provide greater transparency over what is collected and how it will be used – will find more positive ways to engage with consumers. This transparency combined with demonstrating clear benefits will also help to alleviate consumer anxiety about data sharing.
The Consumer Data Value Exchange Study is the result of a partnership with the Future Laboratory, Sentient Decision Science and Research Now to understand the value consumers expect from the digital platforms they use daily. It provides a look at current consumer understanding of sharing and data handling; perceptions of the utility of services received in return; and consumer expectations of technology platforms, brands and content providers moving forward. If the future is less about conventional “push” advertising and more about “pull” advertising, this research will help us crack the code on what data consumers will give and what they expect in return.