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Obstacles on the Horizon for Behavioral Targeting?

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DMNews recently featured a piece outlining one of the larger challenges under debate before the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), tracking and behavioral targeting. Many consumer groups are concerned with privacy issues surrounding tracking online behavior using cookies and clickstream data.

The challenge arises when consumers themselves express conflicting opinions. A recent TrustE study resulted in 57% of consumers expressing that they are uncomfortable with online activity being tracked. However, 64% of those consumers also said that they prefer to receive relevant, messaging from brands they know and trust. The ability to track activity is what allows marketers to serve up valuable ads with a targeted approach.

The article recommends taking the following steps to be sure you’re ahead of the curve as legislation unfolds:

  • Be Transparent - Make sure you privacy policy clearly states when data will be used for tracking and targeted marketing.
  • Give the Customer Control - Many companies are already creating goodwill by allowing consumers to opt out of tracking programs.
  • Use Tact - As we’ve said before, sometimes you can be too close for comfort. Customers want targeted messaging, but don’t want to feel like they’re being stalked.
  • Keep up to Speed -  Keep up with trends and make sure you stay on top of which way lawmakers are leaning so you aren’t scrambling to be in compliance when decisions are made.

Written by Adam Blitzer

October 21, 2008 at 4:24 pm

Posted in Industry News

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