Consumer concerns about data privacy are at a fever pitch in the wake of highly publicized scandals and breaches at tech firms and retailers. New laws like the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in Europe and the forthcoming California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) in the US represent a fundamental shift in the regulation of how consumer data is stored and collected by brands, signaling that no personalization tactic is sacrosanct.

Despite these concerns, consumers continue to crave relevant messaging and tune out what they consider irrelevant across brand sites, email, social media, and display advertising. Brands realize the importance of meeting consumer expectations, with 92% identifying personalization as a top priority.

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However, they continue to struggle with execution. In 2018, only 23% of brands personalized their websites with recommendations based on user data inputs, according to Gartner L2’s Data & Targeting report, which evaluates the data collection, communication, and targeted marketing practices of 103 brands in seven sectors. In the face of these developments, brands must rethink their entire approach to data collection, notification, and deployment or risk losing the trust and attention of their audience. 

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