Privacy, Policy and Third Parties: What to know about audience data in 2023

13 February 2023

Data privacy has been a fine line of eggshells since the dawn of the digital age. With acronyms like GDPR filling our feeds, ongoing policy changes can be hard to keep up with. 2023 is no exception. From using to storing data, failure to comply with policy changes could mean you get left behind, or face legal complications. 

Our Navigate CEO, Anthony Rawlins, decided to touch on this at the latest ALVA Heads of Marketing forum. See what he had to say...

What you need to know about data privacy in 2023:

Targeting the individual is out

Since changes in GDPR in 2018, platforms have been looking at how to address privacy issues in their own way. 

In 2023, one way Google is looking to address it is FLoC (Federated Learning of Cohorts). If you don’t know what FLoC is, it’s about targeting a group of users, identifiable by similar browsing habits, rather than targeting the individual. FLoC works to create personalised ads that efficiently hit a target audience, whilst still protecting user privacy. 

Or as Anthony liked to give a poignant example of, that one time divorce lawyers started appearing on his phone because at his age and number of offspring, this is apparently what men similar to him were searching for (It's a good thing he has a lovely understanding wife).

Battling policies and platforms

Platforms are battling each other when it comes to data. Whilst Google’s solution is FLoC, Meta have removed targeting options centred around political ideologies, gender and sexual identities. The changing privacy issues are not always consistent with each other so knowing the rules and scores are to each platform is becoming more of an issue.

What can you do about the new policies?

Build your own data.

Grow your email list. It’s always been about your data but now it’s

Only your own data can give you direct communication with your loving audience! Now that other touch points are being removed we need to become independent as an industry. It’s time to stop relying on other platforms and effectively capture a strong email list. Grow. Your. Own. Data. (I think we've made our point).

Ditch the third party platforms, use the third party tech.

Platforms like Topic DNA (not sponsored, just big fans), are able to create segmented audiences near-instantly, so you can really hone in on the characteristics of your customers. With other platforms reducing your visibility of this data, third party tools are a quick, convenient and good call. Building your own audience profiles separate from your social platforms means you can dig deeper into how to communicate with them. 

Start advertising like retail.

Dynamic emails that pop up when they notice you started a transaction you didn’t finish, things like that make a real difference when it comes to leads. Abandoned carts. Last minute discounts when you're just about to exit. Retail has been clever in the way it talks to consumers, and it's working. Why can't other sectors explore these methods? 

Photo by Marius Masalar

To sum up...

Data privacy is a fine but important line to walk. 

Not only does learning how to walk it mean fulfilling legal obligations, building trust and maintaining positive relationships with customers, but it also means doing business the right way.

It is essential to remember that data alone is only valuable if it is used and analysed correctly. Businesses need the right team and technology to make sense of their data and turn it into actionable insights. And we can help. Get in touch