Importance of Consented Data in a Post-Cookie World

/ 18 August 2022

Time’s up for cookies. With their final days edging closer, it’s time to look at the alternatives. If you’re looking for a strategy that doesn’t have a best-before date, fully consented data is the way to go.

Read on as we discuss when cookies will be phased out and how consented data can take center stage in the post-cookie world.

The post-cookie world

As we discussed in our article on the death of third-party cookies, the sneaky little text files will be a thing of the past by late 2023. That’s because of Google’s Privacy Sandbox initiative, which aims to phase out third-party cookies starting in mid-2023 and ending in late 2023.

Cue the beginning of the post-cookie world. But what does that mean? In short, users won’t have tracking codes saved on their devices by third-party websites. That means sites won’t have access to a wealth of information about the sites they’ve visited, the information entered onto forms and even their location.

When you put it that way, it’s not hard to see why cookies are on their way out. It’s never been quite right collecting such personal information without real consent. While legislation like GDPR attempted to give users more power, it soon became the norm for sites to make it pretty difficult to avoid cookie consent.

What is consented data?

In contrast to the sort of faux consent granted for cookies, consented data revolves around the complete awareness and approval of the user. It’s about truly moving away from underhand tactics and building trusted, meaningful relationships with customers.

Google isn’t moving away from third-party cookies to replace it with a similar counterpart – and it won’t be the only company phasing these sorts of things out. That’s why a real alternative is required if companies want to make long-term progress.

Consented data is collected by the first party – the party which will use it. In this case, that’s the business. Most importantly, they don’t share it unless it’s explicitly agreed to by the data subject.

Another type of consented data is zero-party data. Essentially a subcategory of first-party data, it refers to information which is willingly provided by customers rather than collected, per se, by a business.

Why is consented data important?

Let’s paint the picture – cookies are gone, and businesses need a replacement. Why? According to our 2022 Consumer Survey Report, 52% of customers are frustrated about receiving communications and offers that aren’t relevant to them. 42% said they would be less inclined to shop with brands that don’t provide tailored communications.

But they don’t want sacrifice privacy and trust in exchange. 54% of respondents said that they would exchange their data for tailored offers and promotions. 51% said they’d do so for beneficial product and service recommendations. But a massive 84% of respondents said they want brands to be more open and transparent about the information they collect and how they plan to use it.

Clearly, customers don’t just want to drop the benefits of data sharing. They simply want to know how brands are using it – and ensure that they’re getting back the right tailored in return. That’s exactly what consented data can do.

Earning consented data

As discussed earlier, first-party and zero-party are two of the existing types of consented data. At 3radical, we advocate a new approach – Earned Data. Building upon first- and zero- party, this kind of data is earned through an ongoing value exchange between brands and their customers.

To put this into context, consider that 57% of consumers said they are most willing to share their information when signing up to a loyalty reward program – compared to just 34% during the checkout process and 33% when answering polls or surveys. In short, customers know the value of their data and they want something in return.

But that’s not all. Earned Data is not just collected and used elsewhere. It’s also fed back into that value exchange to give customers a more tailored offering. That improved service results in more trust, more consent and more data – creating a cycle of success for both brands and consumers.

Consented data done well

To put everything into context, we’ve got a simple example of how consented data can be collected using an Earned Data approach.

Italian restaurant group, Zizzi, wanted to improve customer loyalty in an incredibly competitive market. To do so, they needed to know more about their customers’ preferences, behaviour and motivation. That would allow them to target customers with communication and offers that are relevant and personalised, encouraging repeat restaurant visits.

To help Zizzi, we created an entertaining, responsive virtual board game where customers could win instant prizes to be redeemed at Zizzi restaurants – as well as the chance of winning a holiday to Sardinia. Users got a number of dice rolls each day, with the option to unlock more rolls by:

  • Completing a Zizzi quiz with consented zero party data
  • Providing consented first-party data in a survey
  • Social sharing

In all scenarios, they got something back for their activity and all data was fully consented. The results speak for themselves. Over 1.8 million dice rolls were completed with more than 22,000 marketing prospects engaged. In total, their quizzes – ‘All About You’ and ‘What Foodie Are You?’ – were completed 27,000 times.

This invaluable consented data gave Zizzi a insight into their audience’s dietary requirements, drinks preferences and demographic makeup. This allowed them to personalise future marketing messages as well as introducing new menu options tailored to their customers’ preferences.

Making the Switch from Cookies to Consent

You don’t have to wait until cookies are phased out to get on board with consented data. In fact, by making the move earlier, you’ll encounter less disruption and have more time to gain an edge over your competition.

At 3radical, we offer consented data capture solutions through our innovative Voco platform. With our help, you can eliminate your dependency on third-party data, build strategic data assets and enhance brand loyalty.

Ready to get started? Contact our team today to talk more about your brand and how we can help.

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