When it comes to big data best practices, most companies are stumped about how to respect consumer privacy and still get the data they need to make their enterprises profitable. This is particularly true for companies using mobile apps, which often collect all manner of data about user location and habits.
The Mobile Ecosystem Forum (MEF), a global mobile trade association, publishes an annual research report on consumer trust and privacy, which tracks the attitudes of mobile users in 15 countries. In its latest report, released in February, 49% of the 15,000 survey respondents said a lack of trust limits the number of apps they download, compared to 37% who said the same in 2014. More than seven in ten respondents (72%) said they are not happy sharing personal data, such as location or contact details, when using an app, while 34% said lack of trust stops them from buying more goods and services using their mobile device.
"Companies clearly need to balance the need to gather consumer data to monetize services with the need for consumers to trust the services that are offered," said Andrew Bud, chairman of The Mobile Ecosystem Forum, in an interview. "Consumers must be treated as full partners in this value-exchange by helping them understand why their data is collected, how it is used, and what it is used for. That means transparency and a focus on clear privacy policies that are fully comprehensible and easy to read on a tiny mobile screen. In some parts of the world this is becoming a legal necessity, which companies turn into an asset."
To turn data-gathering into a customer relationship enhancer, companies have to ditch the idea of a one-way data funnel and build a two-way engaging relationship centered on personal data. In other words, use analytics to provide insights for the customer as well as insights for your company. Personalized insights are often considered by customers as a top benefit. Other consumer benefits run the gamut from personalized services and loyalty rewards to simply feeling good for helping a good cause.
What's your big data strategy? Have you tried any of these tips in your organization? If so, how have they worked for you? Do you have additional best practices for big data collection that have kept you in good standing with your customers while giving your organization the insights it needs? Tell us all about it in the comments section below.