Contending with data privacy concerns in 5 charts

Apple’s AppTrackingTransparency, Google’s cookie deprecation, and the impending threat of regulation are challenging data collection. Trust in social platforms is declining. As consumers shy from sharing information, marketers need to meet customers where they’re comfortable. That means finding creative solutions and investing in trusted platforms.

1. People are more likely to click ads on platforms they trust

More than half of US social media users consider privacy protection extremely impactful, and 38% emphasize the importance of seeing quality content on these platforms, rather than clickbait.

That’s good news for Pinterest and LinkedIn, the platforms most trusted by users according to our “Digital Trust Benchmark” report, and bad news for Facebook, which just 18% of users think protects their privacy.

2. Digital trust is necessary but elusive

Our survey found trust in social media at its lowest point in three years for all major platforms. Facebook will lose monthly US users for the first time this year, according to our projections.

Since trust has a direct result on ad performance, marketers should look to platforms actively aiming to improve digital trust.

3. Consumers are willing to share data

Nearly two-thirds (64%) of US consumers say they’d provide their email address for a $20 coupon or discount, and 31% would share their full name.

Gen Z is more likely to share their email addresses than other consumers. So even as people have concerns about privacy as it relates to data leaks, they’re not opposed to sharing information, so long as it stays secure. Promotions, like offering consumers a coupon in return for their email address, can be a simple but effective way to acquire first-party data.

4. What are the best sources for first-party data?

As of October 2021, 86% of US marketing decision-makers relied on third-party cookies, per Sapio Research. But with the expansive runway Google has offered for deprecating cookies, marketers have had ample time to refocus.

Data sources like customer purchase history, social media profiles, and website registrations are increasingly important for targeting ads. That said, marketers and publishers don’t all have the resources for collecting first-party data, so sharing consumer data detached from identified information is a key strategy moving forward.

5. Why isn’t everyone using data clean rooms?

Data clean rooms strip identifiers from first-party data to allow secure sharing. But the actual anonymity of that data is up for debate. Consumers on the whole aren’t yet suspicious of data clean rooms, but some publishers are—29% have privacy concerns about data clean rooms and 21% don’t trust the tech.

For 58% of marketers and 35% of publishers, data clean rooms simply aren’t in their budgets.

The bottom line: Consumers have woken up to data privacy concerns in the past few years, but they’re still willing to share information. Motivators for data sharing include trust in platforms or receiving something like a discount in return. And publishers have to use the data effectively by improving targeting so consumers feel rewarded.

This was originally featured in the eMarketer Daily newsletter. For more marketing insights, statistics, and trends, subscribe here.