Regain The Power Of Laser Accurate Audience Targeting With first-party Data
During the last few years, in addition to a disheartening and disruptive global pandemic, we’ve seen digital paid advertising go through changes – namely concerning customer preferences regarding which ads they see, their control over the process, and increasing concerns over how their privacy is impacted as they navigate through the buying experience.
As the general public starts to unveil the myth of why we see certain ads on our social media feed and not others, one very important concept has emerged as the ultimate resolution: consent.
If we, through some mechanism or other, have agreed to being advertised to on a certain product or service category, it will be less creepy to see the near-telepathic ads on our social media news feeds.
So, as marketers, how do we make sure to have user consent in place before delivering ads? The answer is closer than you think: first-party data.
What Is First-Party Data?
Treasure Data defines first-party data as follows:
“First-party data is data you collect directly from your customers and audiences through interactions with them. It includes demographics, purchase history, website activity, interactions, interests, mobile app data, and behaviors–such as clicking on an email or reading an article on a website. You collect this data through sales of your products and services, through support processes, forms on your website, subscriptions, surveys, social media connections, and so on.”
Here are a few common ways to collect first-party data:
- Newsletter signups, or, in marketing terms, adding a user to a CRM database.
- Website cookies, which are identifiable by the banner that pops up, usually on the lower half of a webpage.
- Purchasing a product
- Entering the customer care process.
In each case, the user information is collected with the user agreeing to a collective of terms and conditions which could include future marketing activities. They know that their information may be used to create an audience segment, delineated by existing brand recognition or even purchase intent – and they’re okay with that.
Leveraging First-Party Data for Increased Revenue
The power of first-party data has been repeatedly proven. According to Think with Google, the use of first-party data can result in a significant growth in revenue; up to 2.9 times, and a decrease in media cost by 1.5 times.
For the majority of clients, to utilize the power of first-party data, the actionable item we recommend is connecting your CRM database to your marketing platforms.
Taking Google Ads as an example, with access to audience segments in the CRM database, marketers can relate multiple keywords to each conversion action, create a custom audience list, launch remarketing campaigns, deliver personalized ad experiences based on lifetime value, and look for promising potential customers similar to current clients.
As you can see, there are plenty of possibilities to explore.
How To Connect Your CRM To Google Ads
The process of connecting CRM to Google Ads is fairly straightforward, let’s explore:
1. First, navigate to Tools and Settings within Google Ads, then click on Linked accounts:
2. From there, we will see a list of popular platforms that could be connected directly to Google Ads, and we can do this by following the step by step instructions after selecting your preferred platform to complete the process:
3. In many cases, your desired platform might not be on the list, in which case we’ll need to use a data connector such as Zapier:
Luckily, with a connection platform, the process is equally painless. Following the process of authenticating both the data connector and Google Ads, choose a trigger, choose a result action – then select the data to parse between platforms.
After that, remember to run a test and see if the connection has been established successfully.
Things To Note
As you work through this process, here are some things to keep in mind:
- You might need the help of a developer if your CRM database is hosted on a custom platform.
- Make sure to audit the audience segmentation and customer journey in your CRM before importing – and keep a clean dataset.
- Set up an interdepartmental protocol on data management. This can look like aligning your sales and marketing teams on how data should be entered into the CRM.
- If you use a connection platform like Zapier, monitor the connection on a regular basis and do your maintenance work – unfortunately, it’s not a ‘set and forget’ kind of thing.
- Dig deeper into audience insights by cross referencing data in paid media and organic traffic.
Personalizing Ad Experience in a Privacy-Conscious World
Bottom line, prioritizing personal privacy in customer experience isn’t negotiable – and the feeling behind it will only grow stronger. Digital marketers have to adapt to the new realities of an advertising-conscious world, and seek solutions to bring personalized, high-value ad experiences with customers’ consent.
First-party data plays a major role in this shift. We highly recommend all businesses to connect their first-party databases to their marketing platforms to discover fresh opportunities to identify ready-to-buy customers in a privacy-first world.