By Billy Boulia|Apr 29, 2021

Key Takeaways:

  1. Understanding the various recent digital data privacy concerns
  2. Digging into Apple iOS 14’s updates and what it means
  3. Leveraging digital intelligence research to dive into a target audience’s mindset

Data privacy is certainly not a new topic for digital marketers and agencies alike. Matter of fact, due to the pandemic, concerns over privacy and how personally identifiable information is used have been brought to the forefront of conversations, and life. In a study from late 2020, the research points out that “84% of online shoppers will abandon their purchases if a website isn’t deemed as secure.” And if you remember, back in 2018 the EU passed the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) that increased data privacy requirements. Furthermore, California announced that will begin enforcing the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA). The CCPA gives consumers the right to:

Apple’s iOS14
  • Know about personal information a business collects and how it’s used
  • Delete personal information as it’s collected
  • Opt-out of the distribution of personal information
  • Non-Discrimination for exercising their rights

But what’s probably the largest move in the data privacy game is, what Forbes calls Apple’s iOS14 game changer: requiring all apps on the iOS platform to ask for explicit permission to track and use user data. What is actually means is that Apple is providing its users with utmost transparency in how their data is tracked and used. The concern surrounding this only puts a fine tip on the concern with data privacy as whole: that users will more often than not, choose to opt out of having their data tracked.

We, as marketers and agencies, may at first see this as a huge red flag. You may be asking, “if we lose the capability to track user information, how will our ads be personalized and customized?” This conversation also lends itself to the notion that data should no longer be used to intrude in people’s digital places and spaces, and instead be used to inform and be additive. Additive in terms of creativity, how to connect with audiences and providing something truly of value. For too many years we have leaned on the valuable detail that we receive through data collection, rather than on audience insights.  

Data security chip

Have we become lazy creative marketers? Of course, data is wonderful and provides amazing efficiencies to digital advertising, but are we exercising the right side of our brain enough? We are being presented with an opportunity to take advantage of the restrictions rather than run away and be worried. We get around this potential lack of data through, what we call Digital Intelligence Research. This research allows us to hone in and dig in on target audiences and their habits, behaviors and motivations. We’re able to paint a holistic picture of who our target is: demographics, geography, digital consumption behaviors, motivations & personalities, etc. This research provides us with the detail that we need to bypass the potential lack in data. And market to them creatively and in ways that matter.

With this data privacy revolution, let’s not get scared by what’s happening in the marketplace. Let’s use this as an opportunity to make this work in our favor and have the data the we will have access to inform our marketing, not intrude in our audiences’ lives.


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