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midata principles gain ground

Posted on: Sunday 14th of October 2012

The evidence that midata is the way forward keeps coming. Last week Marketing magazine asked four senior brand leaders, ‘Could allowing consumers access to their data backfire on brands?’ Their resounding answer was that being transparent with consumer data, and enabling access to it, is the future for companies. Brands that realise the potential for personal information services enabled by data sharing will “be rewarded with increased loyalty.”

This is a follow up to the recent article on Tesco’s investment in Clubcard Play – Tesco’s new commitment to give consumers access to their own data to help them plan and achieve their goals through fun and engaging games/apps. Tesco’s move on midata, and recognition from these business leaders that a new ‘midata enabled’ world can only be advantageous, show that the control shift as it relates to personal data is happening – and happening quickly.

These are a few of the fascinating comments.

Glen Calvert, Founder and Chief Executive Affective: “The digital economy is still in its infancy, and brands that position themselves to be transparent with consumer data now will reap the long-term benefits of trust.”

The suggestion here is that people will vote with their feet and ‘go dark’ on brands that don’t have transparent, trusting, data sharing relationships with customers and that don’t respect people’s concerns about privacy and permissions. There will be a new competitive battlefield to be an individual’s chosen information partner, and there will be new commercial winners and looses.

Charles Ping, Chief Executive Fuel: “A challenger brand could offer a method to win customers by ingesting consumer-controlled data and delivering a better, more relevant service.”

High Bishop, Chairman MRM Meteorite: “It’s customers’ data so of course they should have access, but this data adds no value unless brands provide a level of utility around it that is co-ordinated with the overall brand experience.”

These two comments highlight the opportunity to be seized in terms of developing brands as information services to create new relevance for customers, value and revenue opportunities for companies.

But it’s the last quote from Alan Giles, Chairman Fat Face, that really hits the nail on the head, “Third party applications that draw in data from a wider array of sources can generate further benefits for consumers. The improved lifestyles and consumer behaviour that should result could prove to be a powerful driver of economic growth.” He recognises that once data is a tool in the hands of the individual – and people are able to start to become producers of information as well as consumers of products and services – it will stimulate the innovation of a whole new industry of personal information management services that help people manage their lives and preferences better, and which enable other providers to reduce their cost to serve.