5 min read

The Truth About First-Party Data Enrichment

This post is a part of our larger “The OTT Advertiser’s Guide to Second and First-Party Data,” click here to learn more.

Modern-day marketing requires a deeper dive into your target market than it once did. There was a time when your product or service would do all the talking for itself, but that time has come and gone. Consumers want brands to know them personally and speak directly to them in their advertising.

The truth is 63% of respondents are highly annoyed by the way brands continue to rely on the old-fashioned strategy of blasting generic ad messages repeatedly. This means it’s time to ditch buyer ‘assumptions’ and replace them with data-enriched marketing tactics. 

This starts with a thorough understanding of first-party data enrichment and how to use it to its full potential. 

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FIRST-PARTY DATA: DREAMS VS. REALITIES

There are two sides to a dream: what we wish was the case and the unspoken reality of that wish. This is especially true for data collection. So, let’s dive into the dreams and realities of first-party data. 

The dream

Every marketer’s dream is to have the ability to collect first-party data from all of their customers free of charge. According to Salesforce, 63% of consumers said they’d think more positively of a brand if it gave them content that was more valuable, interesting, or relevant — and yet, this dream is still out of reach.

However, while first-party data collection would give you legal data you own and can do what you please with, there are limitations to remember.

The reality

The ugly truth is:

  1. Not every company is able to activate first-party data collection, whether that be because of lack of technology, budgeting issues, employees, or another reason. In these cases, you need alternatives for replacement. 
  2. Not every customer consents to first-party data collection, and privacy protection laws are moving forward quickly to appease those customers. If a portion of your audience is reluctant to share data, it can be challenging to represent all of your buyers accurately.
  3. Though often accurate, relying on one source of data will not represent your full customer. Even when you have access to data on your ideal customers, there is no guarantee that it is flawless or the whole-image without validation from another source. 

Simply put, first-party data can be your most valuable asset, but it’s still limited. 

WHAT IS FIRST-PARTY DATA ENRICHMENT?

If first-party data is a company’s bread and butter, first-party data enrichment is the whole feast. It’s the process of taking a mixture of data collection methods and sources and combining them into more in-depth representations of your buyers. It’s taking your first-party data to the next level and grooming it with the validation and contribution of second and third-party data. 

Ideally, it includes the use of second-party data because it’s just as efficient and reliable when the source is properly vetted and proven to be trustworthy. In many cases, this can be done through two or more consenting parties leveraging their first-party data to benefit everyone involved. 

The major benefits of data enrichment include:

  • A more holistic view of your current and potential customers — directly enhancing customer experiences with more (and better) knowledge. 
  • Data is always changing, and enriched data allows you to keep updating those changes as they pertain to your customers.
  • It’s expensive to store a substantial amount of data that isn’t all relevant to your goal. Whereas data received from outside sources is only accessed when needed.

HOW TO UTILIZE FIRST-PARTY DATA ENRICHMENT

Ideally, you’re able to collect first-party data and enhance it with data collected from a reputable secondary source or partner. This creates the sweet spot of data by combining the data you collect with just as relevant data that a partner may have collected. Then you utilize this combination of data to target your customer at the exact spot they are most likely to convert.

Know what you have and what you need 

The key is to use a credible secondary source to fill in the gap of data you need but don’t have or data you would like confirmation on. This means evaluating what information you lack — for instance, similar products your consumers buy most or specific personal interests — and setting out to find the right partner to get you access to that information. 

Simply put, by defining your needs, you can pinpoint valuable information amidst extraneous data.

Measure the impact

As with everything you do in marketing, it is important always to measure and evaluate any new strategy’s impact. It’s the same with first-party data enrichment. You want to make sure that the data coming in aligns with the goals your business intends to reach. If not, adjust your strategy accordingly.

As Warren Buffet once said, “In the business world, the rearview mirror is always clearer than the windshield.” Sometimes, it takes a good look into what has and hasn’t worked in the past with your data-enriched marketing tactics to understand better how to use that data more beneficially and efficiently in the future.

When to use first-party data enrichment

In all honesty, first-party data enrichment can enhance any marketing efforts by giving you the perfect representation of your ideal customers. However, it is most beneficial for optimizing your omnichannel marketing campaigns

This is because omnichannel focuses strongly on positive and consistent customer experiences at every touchpoint with your brand in the buyer journey. Data-enriched knowledge allows you to personalize those experiences more efficiently, thus increasing customer satisfaction with your brand.

Partner With a Data Expert

It’s already challenging figuring out all the ins-and-outs of data collection, let alone adding in data enrichment. In fact, it’s the sole reason marketers have such a hard time targeting (and therefore, reaching) their consumers directly. As humans, we are hardwired to continuously evolve and adapt to changes, making it important that marketers keep up. Our Strategus team understands these challenges and has significant experience in taking first-party data and expanding its value. When you’re ready to maximize your targeting efforts, contact us for more insight into first-party data enrichment and the beauty of second-party data.

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