Why are businesses so thirsty for personal data?
Yes, data helps business leaders make better decisions. Yes, data insights have become a competitive advantage.
But why collect so much personal data about customers? Why so much messy surveillance in the race for customer engagement and ‘relevance’?
There are three root causes:
1. The data tools are now everywhere, and increasingly easy to use
‘Low-code’ and ‘no-code’ data collection tools mean that companies can easily and quickly track customers at low cost.
With the right data set up, you can follow a customer’s data footprints around the web.
In the digital age “what can be connected, will be connected…” so it’s also true that “what data can be collected, will be collected”.
2. Business leaders want to be customer obsessed
Amazon’s Jeff Bezos has been the most vocal champion for this.
Chasing down every avenue to understand exactly what the customer does, how and when - even with whom.
It’s one thing to be passionate about helping customers solve real problems; but quite another to be ‘obsessed’. It conjures up images of excess and addiction.
A teacher wouldn’t say they were obsessed with their students; nor a married person obsessed with their spouse. Obsessive individuals often need help and treatment, and are sometimes given restraining orders.
3. We are all ignoring the downstream costs
Many businesses are simply ignoring the side effects once the data is collected.
Extra costs to clean, sort, store, insure and use the data. The compliance overheads. The loss of customer trust given that we’re seeing a major data breach every day. It all adds up, but it’s largely invisible, and certainly not part of the business case.
If you want to learn more about what’s really going on around personal data and customer engagement, and how things are about to completely change - why not sign up: