Using Data Ethically in Your Digital Advertising (VIDEO)

 

Video Transcript

Hi, this is Rich Cannava, and today we're going to be talking about how to use Big Data ethically.

In the age of Big Data, marketers have this unprecedented view of their customers — who they are, where they are, what sites they visited, what they've search for...pretty much all their behaviors online. And in many ways, this is a wonderful thing, especially for marketers, right?

You can use customer data to personalize the ad experience like never before, leveraging it so you can reach people at exactly the right time, in exactly the right context, when they need your products or services the most.

And most consumers now accept this. They actually expect it...as long as they feel like they can trust you. So as data-driven advertising becomes more and more common, people are more cognizant of the tracking and targeting techniques that we're using. This level of awareness shapes how they behave online and in real life. It can affect what brands they engage with and it can influence who they ultimately decide to buy from.

The fact is, people have always made purchasing decisions based on trust. Personal data and how it's used is just the new part of that calculus.

So today, we're going to talk about how to keep your data-driven campaigns effective, without crossing the line and breaking trust.

The Humans on the Other Side

An important thing to keep in mind when planning out all of your data-driven campaigns is that the ads you're creating are going to be served to real people.

You are a human being advertising to other human beings. So why not just put yourself in their shoes?

Have you ever been served an ad — and I know you have — that was a little TOO targeted? It knows your name, it knows your location, it knows where you ate lunch, it knows that your Aunt Suzie's coming up...

Do you want to buy from a brand like that? It seems like they're stalking you. It's a bit uncomfortable, right?

People generally feel like these ads have become too intrusive, so be wary of getting too intrusive or too specific when it comes to your targeting and messaging. This is a really important thing to consider because people have their radar up, and they'll be looking for ads that are, again, just a little too intrusive.

Be Discerning About Your Placements

All of the new technology out there has made advertising easier, but it's also made it more risky. It’s not just about the ads themselves, but where they live.

Think about the companies who have been boycotted recently for advertising alongside objectionable content. Think about Breitbart. Do we think that thousands of advertisers purposefully placed their ads there to piss off their customers?

My bet would say probably not. But with the rise of time-saving technologies and automated technologies like programmatic, it’s easy to “set it and forget it” and then have your brand splattered somewhere you wouldn't normally place it if you had been hand-selecting the sites.

So let the data guide you here, too. Find out where your customers actually spend their time, what they feel strongly for or against. Then, use that to make more mindful decisions about your ad placements.

Your Reputation is on the Line

There are simply not enough laws to protect vulnerable people, and the ones that do exist are inconsistently enforced, so it's all the more important for advertisers and marketers to behave in a more human way.

But using data responsibly is not just a matter of doing the right thing. Using data unethically or recklessly can have major repercussions for your reputation and your company as a whole.

It’s important look to your brand values and stick to them. Those values should inform how you leverage data for your campaigns.

At the end of the day, if your marketing is in line with your values, there really shouldn’t be a problem, right? If your marketing is not in line, people are gonna see that, they're gonna feel that, and they're gonna react to that in a negative way, and it's definitely going to have negative effects for your brand.

Final Thoughts

If you're considering getting more serious about using your customer's data for targeting and advertising, I hope this video has given you something to think about.

Remember, trust is the most powerful currency in today's market. One false move and your brand could be in danger. And that's a great threat, right?

But there's also a great benefit to this overabundance of data and utilizing it in the right way. But as marketers, we need to let our human sides guide us; we need to let our human sides prevail when we decide how to utilize it.

So, that's it for now! If you want more videos such as these on how to humanize your brand or how to help market your brand, please subscribe to our channel, hit the bell icon, and you will get notified when we post a new video.

Thanks for your time, and until next time, be well and prosper.


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