Do you know who your customers are?
When you start any business, you need an audience to speak to, and that audience is determined partially by your product and partially by who you, as a business, decide to address. Understanding that audience is fundamental when it comes to getting your business off the ground. It’s also essential to maintaining a steady state of growth that will keep pushing your business forward.
We have access to heaps of tools that allow us to know a lot about the kind of audiences that suit our business.
However, collecting that data isn’t always as easy. Ongoing data privacy laws have critically reduced the utility of third-party data, which means that brands have to look elsewhere to obtain valuable information about their customers.
And, increasingly, the data that does exist online is data that customers don’t want to share with you. Over 66% of consumers believe tech companies have too much information on them – and might be more reluctant to share information that matters.
There is a way around that.
Here’s how first party data works.
What is first-party data?
First party data is data you collect yourself, through newsletters, a form on your website, a subscription service, a sign-up page, etc. It’s data that the consumer is willing to give you in exchange for a service, such as access to more content.
What are the benefits of first party data?
First party data is owned by you and it’s directly taken from your audience. This means it offers far more significant insights into your audience. Which also means it’s easier to understand what you can offer your consumers. With first party data, you can personalise your customer experience and optimise your campaigns for higher efficacy. First party data that you collect yourself also might fill in the data gaps that could be hard to get in the form of third-party data.
Is first party data important for SMBs?
First party data is crucial for SMBs.
With first party data, SMBs have data that is invaluable to their business, because it comes from the audiences that matter the most to them – an audience that is ready to purchase or otherwise use their services.
But say they’re not ready to purchase yet. Say they’re interested in your content or in your business, but they’re still weighing their options.
SMBs that use first-party data can tailor their content to appeal to their audience regardless at what stage of the buyer’s journey they’re at. They can personalise their content to create a marketing campaign that feels organic, approachable, and more likely to result in conversions. For businesses that are still on the lower end of their growth, this is an invaluable opportunity to create a communication strategy that benefits your business from the outset.
This is important for a couple of different reasons.
SMBs need every advantage that they can get as quickly as possible, especially if they’re competing against much bigger businesses with much more to offer consumers than they do or that simply leverage significantly larger resources. Creating a communication strategy that connects with audiences quickly is one level where SMBs can compete, regardless of their size.
Secondly, first party data can help SMBs cater to their current consumers, and make sure that their satisfaction doesn’t waver. First party data can help you retarget or address the current concerns for your consumers and find new touchpoints you can work on.
Do I need first party data as an SMB?
It’s very difficult to get by without any kind of data, whether it’s third party or first party – and the more intricate data privacy laws become, the harder it is to find usable third-party data that will speak to your specific case.
Data in general is necessary if you want to navigate the internet as it is – the way the online sphere is growing, and changing, means that finding the right consumers to talk to at the right time has become harder, even as it’s given companies a bigger audience to speak to.
If you’re struggling to understand how first party data works for you, drop us a line – we’ll be happy to talk about first party data for your business.