Cookieless Future: How to Achieve Personalization

Cookieless advertising has presented many marketerers with a dilemma. Consumers are increasingly demanding personalized services from companies while at the same time expecting protection of their personal information.

How can companies understand their customers’ needs and provide the personalization they demand in preparation for the cookieless future? One innovative solution is to build the customer privacy information that companies need into the customer experience. Simply put, have an AI chatbot ask them.

In this article, we will discuss how to achieve personalization based on McKinsey’s latest report on e-commerce and information on trends in U.S. customer service.

Communication Business Avenue has been helping some of the world’s largest companies to integrate call center systems and digital communication tools for the past 16 years.

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Consumer Trend Predictions for 2022

Since early 2020, marketing trends related to digital data privacy have been changing at a fast pace due to the pandemic.

Check out McKinsey’s latest report on e-commerce. Consumers are using digital more in the past year than in the past 10 years combined. Real, digital, and virtual experiences are blending together more than ever.

For example, consumers are now making hospital appointments, buying accessories, checking into hotels, and many other experiences digitally. In other words, when it comes to marketing, digital customer experience has become the new norm. Everyone from independent retailers to large Fortune 500 companies are being forced to create a digital customer experience. Moreover, as customers start to become more comfortable with digital, they are demanding more personalized service.
Consumer trends in 2022 will emphasize digital personalization.

Why personalization is so hard to achieve

Customers who use digital want personalized services that are perfect for them. But providing personalization digitally is not easy.
This is because of the increasing emphasis on protecting personal information and enhancing security.

Since 2018, Apple’s Safari is increasingly regulating 3rd party cookies and measurement; Google Chrome will also regulate 3rd party cookies in 2023 (though this decision has been pushed back to 2024). All the signs suggest that a cookieless future is set to become a reality.

Customers want to be in control of their data, not the company. They want to decide what data to share and for how long, and what companies can do with their data.
In the past, companies have used a number of technologies to provide personalization to their customers.
  • Masked data
  • Homomorphic encryption
  • Secure forms
  • Fingerprinting
But is there a simpler way to provide personalization to customers? Is there a way to get the personal information needed for marketing without making customers feel like they are being monitored by companies?

AI Chatbots - the key to personalization in the cookieless future

AI chatbots solve the conflicting challenges of maintaining digital data privacy while at the same time offering personalization. Simply incorporating an AI chatbot into your existing customer experience will enable you to:
  • Protect customer privacy
  • Increase revenue
  • Increase conversion rates
  • Increase customer loyalty

By allowing customers to converse with AI chatbots, the above four points can be achieved.

The photo above shows a conversation between an AI chatbot and a customer at an apparel e-commerce site, where the AI chatbot asks the customer “How long can I keep your shopping history?” and “Can I use this information for inventory management?”
By using an AI chatbot, it’s possible to collect 1st party data without losing customer trust. Data retention periods and permission to use the data can be collected using the opportunity that the customer is shopping.

1st party data essential for marketing

AI chatbots can be used to build custom intent data. Custom intent data is data that tells you why customers used your company.
Specifically, it represents data that shows exactly what the customer wants to know, what they want to do, and what they want to buy. It means collecting data related to a range of customer queries from questions about order status, to help selecting products.
1st party data that you get directly from the customer is very useful for marketing. Because the data is highly accurate, it’s easier to create a customer experience that is more specifically tailored to the person’s needs and wishes.
Additionally, building custom intent data based on 1st party data allows you to make larger scale adjustments to improve your product, UX, supply chain, etc.
You may be thinking, “1st party data is hard to come by.” But through conversations with AI chatbots, customers can first experience how the data they input can help them shop comfortably. They are also more likely to cooperate because the bot will ask them questions about how the data will be used. The result is a higher rate of personal data collection.

Final thoughts

AI chatbots give customers and companies the opportunity to connect interactively. Customers perceive AI chatbot services as providing personalization while protecting their personal information. Companies can increase engagement with customers and improve revenue, conversions, and loyalty.
Though cookieless advertising may appear to present certain challenges, by using AI chatbots, it’s still wholly possible to achieve a highly personalized customer experience, while still respecting digital data privacy.
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