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PisanoSep 3, 2020 12:46:38 PM3 min read

How Do You Get Your Customers to Share Their Personal Data with You?

The future of a company is surely determined by the behavior of its customers. For this reason, it should be your customers who influence the steps you will be taking in your business decisions. However, collecting customer feedback and data is a very delicate job because there are many concerns when customers share their data.

In a 2014 survey carried out by the consulting company Gartner about the collection and use of personal data, only 25% of 900 participants from the US the UK, Germany, China, and India were aware of what kind of information they shared with private companies. However, 95% of the participants were concerned about the misuse of their information and wanted to protect their privacy, even though they were unaware of what kind of information they shared.

As a response to this type of worries, the National Institute of Standards and Technology published a guide that outlines the specifications of data that can be collected by private companies. According to this guide, personally identifiable information is any piece of information which can be used on its own or with other information to identify, contact or locate a single person.

It’s not a problem that a company can just find a solution today and sit back. It’s a matter for you to think about and develop a company stance. You are responsible for your customers’ personal data and making your customers feel safe.

Be aware of your company’s obligations in collecting personal data

Dorothy Glancy from the Santa Clara University School of Law, suggests you should be aware of how much of the information you collect from your customers is personal, because this information is directly about the security of people. However, information collected about a person’s consumption habits does not fall into this class of personal information.

Share a common action plan with your employees

At first, you need to be aware of all the obligations and risks associated with protecting your customer’s data. Then you need to make sure the company’s privacy policy and business obligations do not conflict with each other, so your employees can work consistently and without interruptions. All of these will make your customers feel safe with your company.

Establish a transparent relationship with your customers in the matter of using data

Nevertheless, customers will always continue to be worried about the possibility of misuse of information they leave. This is quite normal. For this reason, companies that establish a transparent relationship with customers about data collection will win and the others will be destined to lose their customers.

In this case, it’s highly advisable to follow these 2 steps:

  1. Collect customer data with a reliable and trustworthy tool. Customers should be confident that the platform where they leave information and opinions is used only by the authorized people.
  3. Companies should be able to confidently state: “We are implementing changes in our business guided by the feedback you give us.”

Everything changes if the firm assures its consumers about protecting personal data. This trust also allows the firm to stand out from the competition. This is due to the fact a trustable company can collect and analyze data according to the established consumer usage agreement. This way, users recognize that you know what you are doing.

To summarize:

  • Honor your promise to change in the light of the feedback you gather
  • Demonstrate how happy you are with your customers by sharing examples
  • Prepare a report which can be understood by everyone that clearly explains how you will use the customer data

A study that shows how this system works came from the consulting company Gartner. Gartner’s research shows that the use of feedback collection tools has increased 30% in 2016 compared to 2014. Thanks to the proper implementation of data-enriched action plans, consumers are aware that the plans that result from the data they provide will comply with their interests, and thus they are now more willing to give feedback.

One of the best examples is how Disney uses its MagicBand’s. Before the Disney employees hand a MagicBand to a customer, they ask for the customer’s information. Customers readily accept it, because they feel that they are treated specially and receive excellent service in Disney every time they wear bracelets.

It has been observed and stated numerous times that customers attach more value to information if they give it voluntarily and actually see the impact of their feedback. In fact, if you can show that you value the views of your customers, they will voluntarily share both their personal information and their opinions about your brand with you.