Privacy and Trust

Christi Olson, Head of Brand Evangelism of Search @ Microsoft
Sales & Marketing Stage
Ascent Conference 2020

[00:00:03] Hi, I’m Christi Olson. I’m excited to be joining you at Ascent 2020, where I’m here to talk to you about privacy and trust, five key takeaways from the 2020 consumer privacy study that I did earlier this year. Privacy and trust has been something that’s been top of mind for me for a couple of years now as I’ve dug into data and understanding how are we using data and marketing and how does that impact everything that we do from the decisions we make to how we optimize our campaigns going into that, knowing that we’re having changes such as the California Consumer Privacy Act go into effect in January, I decided to run a consumer study to understand what our consumers views and perceptions around data privacy, data breaches, and how we as brands can do a better job building trust with our customer base. As part of that, I talked to twenty four thousand people across 16 countries really spanning the globe to make sure we got all points of view, not just those from us here in the United States, because you might be at a company that does business outside of the US and understanding the nuances and differences around privacy and how consumers view privacy is going to be very important. Now, I don’t have time to go into the entire details of the study, so if you want, you can download it by going to a.k.a. me in Brandes we trust and you can get free access to the entire white paper, including a really in-depth overview of the research, because really, when we think about it, where we’re at today is data fuels, marketing, flywheel. Everything we do within marketing and advertising goes back to the heart of data and consumer experience, the customers, the heart of it. And as we create these consumer experiences, we use the data about what we know about the customer, how they engage with us to really create effective marketing campaigns. And 20 20 has thrown us a couple of monkey wrenches when we hear and certainly unprecedented, it is true. We think about it. We’re in the middle of a global global pandemic that has shifted businesses and how they’re how they’re functioning, how they’re operating, how they’re marketing. And depending where you’re at, I’m in a small town. We’re seeing businesses going out of business because of all the monkey wrench is thrown at them. Now, not only is the fact that we have the the global pandemic happening, but at the same time we have this uproar around social injustice, which I think is about time that we’re seen. So as we think about what we do from a marketing perspective, understand data and privacy, I’d be remiss not to touch on those two components, because as we think about it, this year started off as if we’re going on a journey and you plan this amazing trip of a lifetime where you’re going to go to Bali, where you’re going to get to go to beaches, you’re going to see the water temple, you’re going to do everything you wanted to do and you’re preparing to eat all this amazing tropical food filled with rice and noodles and fresh vegetables. You get on the plane, you take off on that flight, and you’re on the flight for a pretty big amount of time for me to be about 16 hours, about 14 hours. Then the stewardess comes in and says, excuse me, folks, we’ve had a little bit of a hiccup. We’re not able to go to Bali and really we’ve tried to detour, but what’s going to happen is we’re going to be landing in Switzerland. So welcome to Switzerland, you land, this is not the trip you had planned on, this is not the journey you thought you’d be on, because there’s mountains, there’s lakes, there’s snow in Switzerland, lots of cheese and worsens have tropical fruits. It is still an absolutely amazing destination, but it’s not the destination you planned for. That is where we are with data and privacy. And the year 2020 where where we thought we are going and where we have been going are two very different things. Privacy and data is in that same boat because where you think you might be going from a data and privacy journey has been upended and changed as we’ve started to see sort of this transition happening with the marketing to this idea of a cookie world, a world where the IDs for advertisers is shifting and potentially going away, which will up and how we engage in how we advertising market to our customers and clients, which has us thinking a little bit more about data. Understanding how consumers perceive data is even more important, but then knowing what do we as businesses and brands need to do to be customer centric, customer focus and still have a focus on the customer? Because really, as you think about this, it is not business as usual. It is business unusual. And customer experience is more important than ever today than it has been in the past. So with that, we have five key areas I want to touch on from the research. We did trust privacy, the topic no one wants to hear about data breaches, personalization and purpose. So let’s dig in. And I want to say something. If you’ve gone to Britain, you’ve seen these signs in the subway. Mind the gap. Because really, as we start to think about data and privacy, one of the things I covered was that there are huge gaps between consumer perception and marketers perception or marketers understanding of that consumer perception. So we’re going to be digging into some of those gaps that exist today so that you can do a better job as a brand building your overall campaigns. So what does data and privacy have to do with anything other than fueling your marketing flywheel? A lot of it has to do with trust. According to research by Microsoft Advertising LWR, LSW Uncovering Trust Drivers. Eighty five percent of consumers said they will only trust a consider brand if they trust the brand. And really, when we think about trust, consumers only trust a brand until that’s compromised, when we think about some of the things that happened in the past, consumers didn’t fully understand how data could be utilized and used. And when something happened that didn’t meet their expectations, they lost trust right away and they were up in arms, such as Cambridge Analytica using data in the last election cycle. So when we think about trust, we need to move to this idea that with data and privacy, we can help build trust. Building trust will help us build meaning. And as we build meaning, it’ll earn us permission as a brand and as a company to be part of our consumers lives. And this allows us to do this concept that we’re talking about here through Microsoft advertising of marketing with purpose and being purposeful with how we engage because no one wants to be converted a target. Everybody wants to be included, reached, engaged. The words we use as we talk about our customers and clients, we think about customer experience are going to be shifting so that we can incorporate our customers values and the customer experience into what we’re doing. I think it was interesting that Benbrook, the CEO of Transend, actually had this great quote talking about data and privacy because consumers feel like they don’t have a choice in this quote. He says, Delete my data has become the new customer, refund a way for them to express their displeasure to a company because they can take back control of the data. They provide it. Do you want your customers to potentially delete their data where you don’t have access to any information from them? The answer is simply no. And this is why you want to think about brand loyalty and brand love, because trust and love go hand in hand. It’s thinking about what people expect and what creates value and making sure that you as a company are really driving both areas, meeting their expectations, but creating value for your customer, not just yourself. Think about that in order to drive loyalty. Because trust will lie at the intersection of privacy, consumer experience and brand loyalty, because trust right now and we think about this when we asked in the research, are you concerned about the amount of data companies can collect about you? Ninety one percent of all respondents said, yes, we’re concerned. And that wasn’t just a somewhat concern. This is we are concerned somewhat to very concerned. And we think about that because oftentimes there is this gap that exists because companies just chase the bare minimum for privacy. And what it means is they have the privacy statement that is written in police. That might be hard to understand that is written. And as my friend Jeremy Holt says, the Gilligan’s Island contract where we can use our data for this, that the what on anything that we see fit in perpetuity, which doesn’t leave a lot of room for consumers if they don’t understand it. So you need to be thinking about the consumer experience and the consumer privacy journey and go beyond the bare minimum of checking the boxes for what is legally required and making sure that you are valuing your customer so that not only are if they have concerned about the data that you can alleviate that concern, you explain how you’re going to use data, what it’s going to be used for and make sure they have a good understanding. So if we think about this, about this idea of a consumer privacy journey or customer privacy journey, think about it from your customers perspective. Think about it from your perspective. It’s like when you go on a first date, if the very first thing you do is sit down instead of being like, hi, my name is Kristy, I want to shake your hand. If the very first thing you do is like, tell me everything about you, give me all your daddy, give me access to this, people are going to step back. Whoa, whoa, whoa. That is not the date I want to be on. I want to be on a date that feels more like a connection. So think about how you break your privacy policies. Is it written in a way that’s easy to understand that you explain to the consumer how data and information can be used? Doesn’t make you, if you read it, feel overwhelmed. Just make you feel empowered like you have a choice in the decision. Are you transparent or is it transparent with what data is being collected and why? If somebody chooses to opt out, what would happen? What is the user experience that consumers would get if they opt out of sharing their data? And what happens if data was to be requested? How long would it take? Would they receive the data in accessible format? Those are questions you want to start asking in order to get beyond the privacy bare minimum, because privacy matters to everyone in our research. Eighty seven percent of consumers respond that privacy is a right, not a privilege, a right and a Microsoft. We believe the same thing, that privacy is a right. And as you start to look at it, the privacy regulations have been springing up across the globe. Now, I am not a lawyer and I’m not an expert, by all means, and every single country’s privacy policies. But what I can tell you is if you are a company operating business in one, two or even three different countries, you’re going to have to start looking to understand the privacy policies, because the privacy policies not only vary country to country, but here in the United States, there is a chance that we could have different privacy policies state to state. So how do you scale what you do for a business standpoint to meet those privacy concerns today? Now, I don’t have an answer, but it’s something you have to start thinking about. And as we think about the privacy policy changing, I also want to bring up this fact changes coming to the use of third party cookies. So you might have read this, you might not have the notification around. This started happening early this summer where some of the third party cookies are going to go away on browsers. But not only are they going to go way on browsers, we’re also hearing Apple was planning a Sasko October this year, but it’s getting pushed out now to early twenty, twenty one. They haven’t given us the exact deadline where they’re going to be using the getting rid of the ID, fake ID for advertising. That’s allows cross tracking of users and consumers into apps and devices. It gave a lot of really great information. Why is this important? Well, if you’re in marketing, this is important because this will disrupt what you do and how you do for targeting audiences, tracking, personalization, optimization, everything from attribution and understanding how different touch points happen across devices, across browsers, across the consumer journey, all the way down to how you create an audience to target and reach a consumer base. This is all based on data. That’s all based on information. But brands that can provide clarity and choice can build trust in this area of privacy and data collection. Privacy is not just one person’s responsibility, when we asked in the survey who is responsible, almost half, just shy of half said they believe that privacy is a shared responsibility among businesses, individuals and government bodies. And what we meant by this is that individuals are responsible for understanding what data they are giving access to and either giving access or revoking access. Brands are responsible to create systems and ways for the four individuals to understand what information is being shared, how it’s being used, is it being shared internally, externally? Is it going to be sold? Letting the consumer understand that and a government body really is there to explain here are the bare minimum requirements and what you need to do and the policies that we have in place. So there’s some sort of consistency and scale across this area, whether it’s a country, a region or globally. That also impacts sharing because when we asked consumers, have you ever given false data, refused to share your information. Eighty eight percent of consumers responded back. Yes, they’ve given fake data. And when we asked them why and give them choices a lot of times is because there was a lack of trust. They didn’t want to receive phone calls in the evenings. They didn’t want to receive telemarketing calls, junk mail, et cetera. They wanted to know that their data is being collected in use and that they would get information that’s relevant to them, not just mail pushed out and pushed out and pushed out, trying to get them to take an action. Next step. They want something engaging. Compliance is going to be essential, especially as we move forward into this new world. You want to comply, simplify and be transparent.

[00:14:07] Because we all know what happens. Is that sometimes there’s going to be a data breach, so once you make it past privacy, we get into the area of data.

[00:14:18] We’ve collected all this data. The question is not if a breach will happen and the question is most likely when and if it happens. Are you ready for it to happen? Because consumer perception is huge and you don’t want to lose the trust you’ve worked so hard to create with your customers. When we talk to our consumers about how did they have a data breach, yes or no, and how they learned about it. Fifty six percent of people learned about a breach from the news of the media. That means they heard about from a third party source, not from the company that had the breach. Now, when you think about trust, this is huge. I wouldn’t trust a company if they wouldn’t tell me in my data and information had been breached or stolen or the whatnot. And so you want to think about do you have a plan in place to keep consumer trust if a breach happens? Because I have to say this month, so September 20, 20, I’ve received three pieces of mail from different companies. I do business with letting me know that they had a data breach in the past six months, what information was potentially taken. And my next steps as to what I can do to make sure my data is protected. I love the fact I received those communications, because when you think about how data breaches impact consumer perceptions, a lot of times they can be pretty negative. One of the breaches that was involved in late last year actually went into court and went into remediation. And I thought is pretty interesting because this is a medical company that I received a settlement as part of a medical company where my personal medical information had been shared and had been breached out there as part of the settlement. They determine the value of my data. So my personal medical history, according to the to this case, was twelve dollars and ninety one since. How does that impact my perception? It doesn’t leave me thinking pretty highly of that company. And it also leads me to believe is that all my data is worth in my mind, my medical history, my medical data is worth a lot more. So when we think about the customer perception, is that perception going to change my view on the company when we ask consumers this? The answer was yes, in most cases. Eighty five percent of people said their relationship with the company changed. They stopped giving data. They weren’t giving us much data. They’re being more careful with what data they get. And sixty five percent of people who had been part of a breach said they would stop doing business with that company altogether. It’s crazy you don’t want that to happen to you, so I’m going to share some pretty quick tips here, go back down on the deck. I’m not going to walk through it, but think about what you need to do before the breach to plan. How do you get ready? How do you know that if you find out internally that your data has been breached, what do you do? Who is contacted internally? What who what regulations do you have to follow for who you notify to let them know a breach happens? Have you educated your employees as to what they say? Have you educated your customers? Say if we’ve had a breach, this is what will happen here is the process. Because when you do these things and you set up a process process in advance, it allows you as the brand, you as the company to control the message and not the media. And so you want to document that plan of action so that if a breach happens. You know what to do next, you can acknowledge that the breach happened, you can admit that it was a mistake, be transparent about mediation, what’s going to happen, performing reconnaissance to really understand why and how, and then communicate what you learned and what you will do moving forward in order to maintain and continue building that consumer trust. Because if you understand what your consumers value and you can maintain that trust, you can keep your business going and you can keep that loyalty that we so long to have within our customer basis. So, again, as we think about trust, how much is your data worth? Think about customer value. If this number were to get out. Would that change their perception? How would you understand the worth and the value of customer data? Because in reality, the real value of data is our ability to create a meaningful connection with our customers. And that meaningful connection allows us to do better targeting, better advertising. And really, I guess it’s it’s not that the connection creates targeted advertising, allows us to understand the customer so that we can reach them where they’re at in that journey. Because when we think about data and privacy, what comes down to it is the fact that the value lies in the exchange. We talk about value exchange. This is a marketing term. This is not a trend consumers really understand. But this idea of what one party gives up, another party receives. So they give us data. What do we give them back in exchange, is the value worth twelve dollars and ninety one cent? I would say my medical history is worth more, but I could be wrong. But we as consumers, do you think you’re getting good value from sharing your personal data with companies and brands? And we ask this over multiple industries, everything from grocery stores to automotive dealerships to media companies, etc.. The answer? Eighty five percent said, no, they don’t. Only 15 15 percent said they felt like they’re getting good value from sharing data with consumers. Why? Two thirds of the consumers did not understand how their data gets used. What are you doing with that? I shared with you my information, but then I go to log in to your website and you’re not give me a personalized experience. You’re not showing me the products I purchased in the past. You think about this like they didn’t understand how data gets used. And what happens is this breeds an imbalance and what we call the value exchange, which can lead to distrust. Distrust leads to fickleness. Fickleness leads to a lack of loyalty where you can potentially lose those customers. So as we think about what happens, you want to create loyalty and you have to figure out the user experience, whether they share the data or not, because there are some restrictions with different protocols that say if they opt out of sharing that information, you still have to give them an experience. It doesn’t have to be personalized experience. You have to give them an experience. And we talk to our consumers. Four out of five of the consumers believed opting out of data should not change that digital experience. Now, when we saw about this is we heard terms like my dad is not a bargaining chip or it’s not fair that I wouldn’t get the same experience. But we also understood there’s a group of consumers that really understood how data gets used, the more tech savvy where they say, you know, like, hey, it might not be closely tailored to me, like it might not include location, data, things near me, et cetera. But it is my choice to give data and I still want a high quality experience and a good service. So this is the gap. If you take nothing else away from the presentation today other than the fact that data is important, changes are coming. Think about this. The gap exists between the experiences we are creating for our customers based on the data they’re sharing with us. How do we bridge that gap? How do we come together to make sure the experiences we give them are amazing and what they expect based on the data, we’re doing it because privacy is not a policy, compliance or legal issue. Personalization is not a privacy data trust issue. They’re all consumer experience issues because the consumer needs to be the heart of what we’re doing. So if we think about this, there’s purpose behind what we do from personalization. It matters. And we ask consumers what type of personalization are you willing to give data to experience? They weren’t quite certain. And I think they’re not quite certain because we haven’t, as marketers, done a great job of being consistent with the experiences we provide. When we asked this question, we gave them over 20 choices of things they could have and they could write something like what would you be willing to share? Basic information, name, email address and what we saw roughly 60 percent, 57 percent of people said personalized personalized rewards or discounts based on things like before personalized pricing or money back. I love this. That personalization and free showed up the most free products or samples, free access to a service, free news content, etc, free or upgraded shipping, access to content. So we look at this, none of them really scored super high across twenty four thousand people, roughly 60 percent said this would be worthwhile. But the top 10 even we look at what number 10 was expedited purchasing and checkout options. Roughly thirty nine percent of people said, I share my data for that. So it’s not that much. So you want to understand how does value drive value understand what your customers value? How do you personalize the experience based off the data they’ve given so that you can live up to that consumer experience that you give them? How do you communicate what they receive in exchange for their data? Give me this and we can do these things so they’re more likely and more willing to share because when it comes down to it, we all want to feel like we’re being engaged with and that we’re doing is purposeful. I loved that early on during 19, we had some good news that came out and he had this idea of a lesson and purpose where he decided to essentially partner with AT&T and give free, free phone service to frontline workers during this. It was an idea that wasn’t based on a marketing campaign or a brand campaign. It was an idea of let’s do something good on behalf of our customers, because we understand that right now is one of the most challenging things they’ve ever faced. And they’re up front in the middle of covid experiencing all these crisis’s of health concerns and then going home and trying to take it all in. Because purpose really does come from understanding and we think about as brands, we want to be purposeful, we want to be engaged, we want to be brought into our customers lives. So as we think about this, trust is at the heart of it. Data really goes all the way around. We want to be genuine, authentic. We want to have personalization. We want to make sure that we are responsible with the data, that we have access to, that we’re providing value to our customers and that we’re inclusive with what we do, because that overall, as we touched upon trust, privacy, preparing for breach, personalization and purpose helps get to where we want to go. The future requires that you as marketers recognize and priorities that prioritize that consumers want a better experience. That experience will lead to more meaningful connection, and that connection gives us permission to be part of their lives. And that is how we do marketing with purpose. So I want to say thank you. You can access the white paper again at MSG in brands we trust. Feel free to reach out to me on Twitter. My handle is actressy, Joelson, and I hope you have a lovely day.

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