Given the choice, just over half of people in the UK would be prepared to let companies use at least some of their personal information if they could see a clear benefit from doing so, new research indicates, but a third would rather deny them access to any such data.

In a survey of 1,000 UK adults by customer identity and access management business Janrain, very few (3.3%) would give businesses they trust all their personal data and then only “because they may be able to see ways to tailor my experience that I can’t”.

The figures signal a divide that marketers will have to consider in the headlong rush to personalisation, as consumers fall into several distinct camps with regards to privacy that might be broadly characterised as pragmatists, fundamentalists and unconcerned.

With data breaches becoming a regular part of the news cycle – last month hotel chain Marriott admitted that up to 500 million customer records had been hacked – consumers are increasingly aware of privacy issues; the great majority of adults in the Janrain survey (85%) were careful about computer/mobile security to some degree; less than 9% said they weren’t careful.

In the current issue of Admap, Chad Wollen, CMO at Smartpipe Solutions, warns that in this climate marketers will have to move beyond viewing data protection as simply a compliance issue and understand that it entails a fundamental shift in consumer relationships.

“Marketers have the opportunity to think differently, introducing new brand and campaign metrics aligned with the brand’s own privacy expectations, which put the privacy relationship at the heart of the business and create a sustainable advantage,” he says.

One side-effect of focusing simply on compliance was highlighted earlier this year as, ahead of GDPR, brands and companies bombarded consumers with emails seeking consent for the use of data – consent they often already had, according to Fiona Salmon of 1plusX.

The result was “a consumer privacy education campaign that the European Union couldn’t have dreamed of,” she writes in an article for WARC.

“Many consumers are now so aware of their GDPR rights that they’re simply refusing to opt-in to data collection and processing from the vast majority of companies,” she claims.

Data alliances offer one way forward, Salmon suggests, an approach that can give brands access to vast amounts of audience data but with far greater control and transparency than working with third-party data providers.

Alternatively, she offers up “audience expansion engines” that use AI to create accurate but anonymous consumer data profiles from a small amount of GDPR-compliant seed data.

Sourced from Janrain, Admap, WARC, BBC