There is a lot to catch up on if you haven't been keeping up with industry changes surrounding consumer privacy. Consumers are demanding greater privacy around how their data is collected, shared, and used. Because of this, third-party cookies and their associated tracking capabilities are on their way out. If you want to avoid falling behind as these changes occur, it's important to understand the key benefits of collecting more first-party data and the methods you can use to boost your first-party data capture to continue delivering a solid customer experience (CX).

The Demise of Third-Party Tracking

The era of third-party cookies has come to an end. One writer for Forbes dubbed it the "cookie apocalypse". Most web browsing tools, such as Safari and Mozilla, have already deprecated their support for this type of tracking to meet the need of growing demands for consumer privacy, and Google Chrome has committed to do so by the end of 2022. In a similar vein, an increase in "walled gardens" means consumer data is more likely to be masked – or not passed on at all. Marketers can no longer rely on ad-tech to bring in cold prospects and buy behavior-based consumer data for marketing. If you're still relying on third-party data to fuel your marketing reach, it's time to shift your strategy.

How to Collect More First-Party Data

To continue optimizing campaign performance and identifying who your prospects and consumers are online, you’ll need to start collecting more data directly from your consumers. This can include transactional data, web browsing data, preference/interest data and other personal information. Here are a few methods to help you increase your capture:

  1. Leverage the Ascent360 web tracking pixel.  This is a first-party cookie that, once installed on your website, allows you to capture web browsing behavior. With this data, you can send timely and relevant messages including abandoned browse and prospect conversion. Once this data is captured, it’s matched to individuals in your database and made available to be segmented within our Audience Selector tool. Segmentation, email creation, and automation can all be done within our powerful platform.

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  2. Create relevant custom forms. Having a suite of relevant forms on your website is a great way to capture stated interest in products or events. To start, take an inventory of forms you currently have. Ensure they both capture relevant information and feed the data into one centralized location. If not, you’re missing out on connecting key data points to your consumers. Consider re-creating existing forms in Ascent360 to ensure the consumer data is being aggregated in one centralized place. Next, determine what forms you are missing and re-create those using Ascent360’s form builder tool. With this tool you can create on-brand custom forms that feed the data into your marketing platform, connecting the consumer’s form submission data to their golden record.

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  3. Audit your check-out process. Capturing consumer data at the point of sale is paramount. So is asking for consent to send marketing content. If you’re not – or not consistently – capturing this data at check-out, it’s time to audit your check-out process. At minimum, ensure you collect first name, email address, and marketing permissions. Always explain the benefits to a consumer when asking them to provide you with personal data. For example, if your monthly newsletter has information on current store events, sales, and discount codes, make sure to communicate that value.

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  4. Incentivize loyalty for known customers. Create an incentive for consumers to log in to your site and/or create a profile to receive loyalty rewards or discounts. Some POS system providers offer in-platform management of loyalty or rewards programs; however, some clients use external vendors for this.

Don't forget: Focus on creating a value exchange throughout the relationship. This is a strategic recommendation that can have multiple methods of execution, but it's one that is commonly overlooked! Many companies focus more on customer acquisition and fail to facilitate an ongoing relationship with their existing customers. With a tool like Ascent360, you can nurture a long-term relationship with customers to keep them engaged with your brand by taking advantage of upsell, cross sell, and post-purchase campaigns. Keep in mind: in an era of increasing consumer privacy, make sure you focus on consent and transparency.

Your consumers typically want to be known by you, particularly if it means that you can deliver a valuable customer experience with timely and relevant messaging. To leverage Ascent360’s data-driven marketing platform, including the web behavior tracking and custom form builder tool, contact us here.

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