How to become proactive with data privacy in Asia Pacific and get ahead of the curve.

/ 30 September 2021

Forrester’s recent report on the State of Data Privacy in Asia Pacific (APAC) made one thing very clear: most APAC marketers are not ready for a cookie-less future. While Google may have pushed that future back to 2023, platforms such as Safari and Firefox are already moving to increase everyday data privacy. Alongside this, consumers increasingly consider data privacy in their purchasing decisions, and legislation across APAC is catching up with this growing sentiment.

The Asia Pacific region is beginning to adopt privacy-first data practices, and there are enormous opportunities for proactive early movers. Here’s how you can be one of them.

The three horsemen of the ‘cookiepocalypse’

It’s essential to fully understand the harbingers of change that underpin the drive towards data privacy. Forrester’s report identifies three key reasons:

Compliance with regulations and legislation

One of the key challenges for marketers within the APAC region is that every country has its own data privacy framework and set of regulations. There’s no unified standard, akin to the EU’s GDPR, which requires continual changes to adapt to new legislation in different territories. Australia, Thailand, Singapore, and China have all introduced new or updated laws in this area, keeping APAC marketers on their toes.

Despite 88% of APAC marketers stating that consumer data privacy was very important, 59% only fulfill the minimum requirements to comply with legislation. This suggests that organizations are willing to create privacy-first policies, but both themselves and their partner agencies lack the know-how to move forward.

Proactive companies, particularly global ones, will be looking at building privacy-first data capture strategies that comply with regulations across all regions. In doing so, they will be able to gather richer and more actionable data than ever before, while refining and maximizing their ROI.

Platforms going privacy-first

Now that Google has delayed the end of third-party cookies within Chrome, many companies continue to adopt a ‘wait and see’ attitude toward this significant change. While Chrome may be the final key browser to adopt this privacy-first outlook, other platforms and companies have already taken action. For example, early analytics from Apple’s iOS 14.5 requirement that apps get permission to track consumers suggests that a huge 96% opt-out of tracking.

It’s easy to see the benefit for consumers in this scenario, but we think this also presents a huge advantage for marketers. By adopting an Earned Data strategy, marketers will be able to break free from vague and unreliable third-party data sets and focus on data provided directly from their customers and prospects.

Consumer Sentiment

The final and most important reason for change is the shifting consumer attitudes towards individual data privacy. Legislation and platforms are catching up with customer sentiment; so why are brands and advertisers still lagging? Forrester’s report shows that just 30% of surveyed organizations have a dedicated strategy to communicate with consumers about data privacy. This suggests that most companies don’t know how to talk to their customers about data privacy. The more a brand treats the topic as taboo, the less trust consumers will place in that brand. It’s time to get on the front foot, have those conversations, and be visibly ethical.

40% of the marketers in Forrester’s survey had not considered embracing privacy as a way to improve marketing effectiveness. Proactive companies will be looking at the opportunities that are presented by these changes and use them to differentiate themselves from their competitors. Adopting an Earned Data strategy will build long-term relationships with your customers ethically and transparently, in a mutually beneficial value exchange. However, these data sets take time to develop and build at an actionable scale – investing time and resources now is essential.

Getting proactive with data privacy, where do I start?

Big opportunities are waiting for proactive companies ready to embrace and prepare for changing regulations, platforms, and customer attitudes. With each of these elements comes the opportunity for marketers to improve marketing effectiveness and differentiate their company from competitors. The sooner organizations build their data, the better their position will be in the upcoming years.

We predict that Earned Data, built directly from individuals rather than third parties, will be the cornerstone of effective future data capture strategies. If individuals can control which brands can access their data, organizations must encourage mutually respectful relationships with their customers. Measuring the level of trust your brand inspires will give you a starting point to develop your communication strategy.

Following this, consider the current customer touchpoints with your brand and look for ways to add interactive elements to understand your customer’s needs better. Finally, present a value exchange at these touchpoints, in which services or rewards are offered in return for the customer’s data.

Historically, interactive digital experiences were expensive, inflexible, and required time-consuming coding from partner agencies. However, with agile platforms such as 3radical’s Voco, it is quick and easy for brands to create engaging customer experiences that present a meaningful value exchange. This means that brands can experiment, trial different experiences, and learn which audiences respond to which incentives. Marketers can also deploy this across all digital platforms to discover intent and interest data that creates a much broader view of the customer’s needs. Once you know this intent data, it is possible to create a much more valuable experience.

Starting this data strategy now will give brands the time to gather this data to an actionable scale. In addition to developing an effective strategy in preparation for 2023, these data sets will take the complexities out of ever-changing regulations and conform to consumer’s data privacy expectations.

How Mediacorp utilized Earned Data to drive web traffic and consumer data capture

As an example of how Earned Data can provide a richer set of data, 3radical worked with Singapore’s national media network, Mediacorp, and their fully digital newsroom, TODAY. Mediacorp was looking to understand the constantly changing needs of their consumers, earn their engagement, and get closer knowledge of each reader.

To tie in with the 20th anniversary of TODAY Online, 3radical worked with Mediacorp to create a fun, short campaign. The campaign was designed to drive new users to the TODAY Online site, increase awareness and encourage repeat engagement over 20 days to inculcate a habit among new audiences. Users were invited to play a different game each week, including Sudoku, Word Search, Trivia Quiz, and Pairs Matching. To encourage new users to the site, the campaign was open to the public and promoted through TODAY Online’s social channels. In addition, the first 20 winners from each day residing in Singapore were sent redemption codes for prize vouchers.

The result was a strong upswing in Earned Data. All unique users willingly provided their email addresses in a value exchange, with 24% of these winners providing additional data for prize redemption details. Based on the data each user-provided, Mediacorp could use the data collected to engage on a more personal level with their readers. Mediacorp could also analyze the behavioral data and insights to develop strategies around user interaction and engagement.

This was delivered in a transparent and mutually beneficial exchange that created an engaging experience for consumers and valuable insight for Mediacorp. View the entire case study here.

Seeing the possibilities in data privacy

While the regulations and platform privacy policies represent an enforced change, it’s vital to view these challenges for what they are: Opportunities. Brands can get ahead of the post-cookie curve and develop richer and more valuable data sets that generate more impactful insights with the right strategy.

The values of trust and transparency build long-lasting relationships across all audience demographics. To deliver the best experience to your customers, you need to understand their intentions, interests, and the incentives that intrigue them. By gaining this data, brands will refine marketing budgets by maximizing ROI from data sources.

If you’re ready to take a proactive approach to data privacy, let us show you how 3radical and our audience engagement platform Voco can help. Contact us here.

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