Despite all the rhetoric you read in the press, people are still willing to share their data. They're frustrated by companies that abuse it, but understand the value of doing so—when it's legitimate. In fact, a study by the Data & Marketing Association found that 44% of US consumers feel more comfortable with data exchange than they did in the past—you just have to ask them for the right things, in the right way. Here are five ways people are actually okay sharing data.
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- Tell them what you're collecting. Distrust starts when the customer thought they were giving you their email address, only to find out later that you also had their workout routes, shopping lists, and more.
- Tell them who is using it. Again, customers are often okay sharing info, if they know. They lose trust when you said you were giving them local sports scores, but also selling their data to third-party advertisers who could target their workplace, medical visits, and more.
- Tell them how you protect it. Sensing a theme here? Communicate. In this day and age, reassuring customers that you're taking active, current steps to keep their data out of the wrong hands is essential.
- Tell them it's anonymous. And mean it. Serve a GDPR-compliant informed consent notice, and make sure you can back it up.
- Deliver an actual benefit. If you ask for a lot of info, and use it just to deliver ads for things customers don't want, they lose trust. Promise them something useful, like personalization, and make it personal to them.
Again, customers are over it when it comes to data breaches and lazy or irresponsible handling of their data; but, that doesn't mean they won't share if you make the effort to do it right.
- How to become a data scientist: A cheat sheet (TechRepublic)
- Download Crystal Reports 2008 (TechRepublic download)
- Volume, velocity, and variety: Understanding the three V's of big data (ZDNet)
- Best cloud services for small businesses (CNET)
- Big data: More must-read coverage (TechRepublic on Flipboard)
Tom is an award-winning independent tech podcaster and host of regular tech news and information shows. Tom hosts Sword and Laser, a science fiction and fantasy podcast, and book club with Veronica Belmont. He also hosts Daily Tech News Show, covering the most important tech issues of the day with the smartest minds in technology.