In my blog YouTube caught collecting children’s data we talked about the ethics of collecting children’s data. However, the question of ethical data usage is something which has become increasingly concerning over recent years. The Cambridge Analytica and Facebook scandal, in particular, recently brought the practice of personal data usage to the average consumer’s attention.
For marketers the use of data can increase the quality of sales leads, prospecting accuracy, territory planning, win rates, and decision maker engagement strategies. The evolution of data technologies and analytics has created new marketing opportunities but also opened up a myriad of ethical challenges, such as the targeting or exclusion of minorities through dark ads. Consumers still struggle to understand the nature and scope of the data collected about them, and only 9% believe they have “a lot of control” over the data that is collected about them, despite 74% saying that it is very important to be in control of who can get their information.
The ability to collect more granular data grows, typically faster than rules and guidelines can be written to keep pace. Thus, although a marketer’s use of data might be guided if their company or industry has clear data usage guidelines, it ultimately has a large reliance on their own personal ethics. The integration of ethical data practises, that address questions regarding the technology’s influence on society, will be what the future of digital marketing relies upon.
What do you think about the ethics about data usage in marketing? Should there be more rules in place to protect and inform consumers about data collection?
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