The privacy paradox is the inconsistency between consumers' concerns expressed (in, say, surveys or opinion polls) about personal privacy and their actual online behavior. People may say they oppose sharing data with brands but often willingly and knowingly share it for personal benefits. They say one thing but do another.
So, do consumers want to share their data in exchange for personalization benefits? It depends.
Most consumers prefer and expect data-driven personalization, but it depends on how you use their data for personalization. For example, a consumer may welcome a message that highlights a big sale at a nearby store. But if the message pops up as the consumer walks in front of the store (indicating that the company "knows where they are"), they may find this unsettling. In both cases, the key data is the consumer's location. What's different is how the company uses their location data.
Many consumers also object to receiving advertisements for products they recently browsed online. This is especially true if they actually purchased the product. (This advertising practice is called "retargeting," whether it happens before or after a purchase.) In fact, Google deemed this practice so objectionable that the company recently decided to stop doing it with its ad system.
Consumers' concerns about sharing data isn't just about what your brand does with the data, but what criminals could do with it should a breach or hack occur. According to an RSA survey, 64% of US respondents would blame the companies, not the hackers, for any theft of their personal data. Make sure you have strong security and data protection, then communicate that to your customers.
Sharing data with brands has changed over the last 20 years. For example, according to the Verizon report, some technologies, including artificial intelligence and facial recognition, can collect a customer's personal data without any prompts from them. That means it's more important than ever to be transparent about the data you collect and how that data will be used.