Data privacy concerns dominated 2017’s headlines, leaving much of the population affected by everything from hardcore data breaches to creepy uses of personal data by corporations. The resulting backlash from the public can make a meteoric impact, not only on brand image but the bottom line.
In the era of big data, companies and public institutions are struggling to balance personalization and privacy, but it’s too easy to teeter. Two years ago, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology revealed that just four pieces of information are all that’s needed to match consumers to their credit card records.
Companies of all sizes and profiles can reveal customer details in not so sanctimonious ways. Remember the story of a father who found out his daughter was pregnant thanks to one large retailer who had sent him a coupon for a maternity item?
Some other famous offenders include the car service company that tracked GPS locations after the ride ended and the social media app that inadvertently revealed which of users’ friends didn’t register to vote.
Today, while consumers succumb to some of the customization conveniences the smart use of data affords, customers are rightly uncomfortable when, say, personal movie watching habits turn into target ads, as in a recent case with one content provider.
So what’s the problem? Decision makers still fall short in addressing how they collect, manage, use and protect data. Many are eager to use customer data but for the wrong reasons. If there’s a data breach, they often wait too long to tell customers, failing to enact proactive customer service measures and, of course, avoiding steps to regain trust with customers.
Luckily, there are many right ways companies are using data: to know their customers better and to keep up with their needs and expectations to drive loyalty without sacrificing privacy.
Here are five recommended reads that will help you learn how to stay on your customers’ good side while still gaining the insights you need to stay competitive:
- What’s the value of a top ranking Enterprise?
- The evolution of the data-driven company
- Uncovering 3 popular misperceptions: A perspective on the data and analytics market
- Very pretty, very wrong data: The ugly side of self-service data visualization
- The next wave of business intelligence for the data-driven enterprise