Consent Management, Data Privacy and Your Customer Data Platform

Five yellow locks in a line. The middle lock is unlocked. This represents consent management and customer data privacy.

Rules and regulations around data privacy and data usage are constantly evolving. International privacy regulations have been established that can impose large penalties on companies that do not collect and manage consumer data appropriately. Compliance with data privacy regulations is essential to the success of a business, but can be a challenge to manage. That’s where consent management comes in. 

What is Consent Management, and How Does it Work in Marketing?

You’re probably familiar with consent management requests because most websites use them. For example: the cookie prompt. This type of consent request often appears with pop-ups disclosing details about tracking (i.e., the use of cookies) that you can accept or decline. 

With consent management, you give users greater control of what data is collected about them and how you will use that data. However, it’s not a simple binary question (i.e., yes or no), especially when you have different purposes to track and collect user data. 

You may use customer data for marketing or customer service, so you need to ask consent questions for each of those functions. Inform the user of how you are collecting and using their data, and what it means for them. You then need to adjust your tracking according to their preferences, along with processing any data requests you receive.

Why is Consent Management Important Today?

Consent management is important today because it logs and tracks consent collection, helping organizations stay in compliance with global privacy regulations. While the collection and management of customer data is needed for marketing and advertising campaigns, organizations must do so in compliance with local and international data privacy laws.

Read More: International and U.S. Data Privacy Laws and Regulations

To complicate matters, Google is depreciating third-party cookies by 2024, following suit with other browsers which have already eliminated or restricted 3P tracking. Mobile technology is playing a part in protecting customer data as well, with Apple and Android putting options in place to restrict cross-app tracking. Customers care about how their data is being handled, and technology is responding to this desire. 

What is a Consent Management Platform?

A consent management platform automates the process of requesting consent. The platform stores user preferences, and updates those preferences as needed. Requesting consent can be as simple as accepting the use of cookies to track data, while a more complex scenario is providing a user with a contract that describes the data you are collecting, and how you are processing it. 

How Do You Develop a Consent Management Framework?

In order to develop a consent management framework that complies with data privacy laws, you must define the requirements needed for consent, along with developing privacy policies and standards that protect user data. 

Once developed, the framework needs to become a standard part of business operations. Your consent management platform must manage the consent requirements according to each regulation. This reduces manual efforts and helps you minimize the possibility of penalties and fines.

The consent management framework must allow users to manage their privacy settings using easy-to-access systems. Users must also have the ability to see the information you have stored about them. In order to manage customer data while respecting privacy laws and collecting user consent, combine your customer data platform (CDP) with a consent management platform to unify the consent data with the customer data collected across platforms.

How Does a CDP Help with Consent Management?

Creating a unified customer profile across channels and platforms makes it easier to comply with data requests and preferences. The unified customer profile includes all consent and privacy requirements across applications and regions.

Because consent can vary across regions, platforms and experiences, it’s important to unify customer profiles across all channels and experiences. By unifying the customer profile, you can apply the right restrictions at the right time without slowing down campaigns. 

A customer data platform (CDP) is used to create a single user profile through cross-platform data collection. Some CDPs are capable of integrating with consent management platforms to become the trusted clearinghouse of user data. Some CDPs also provide identity resolution and data masking capabilities to ensure personal data is managed appropriately and securely. CDPs can store consent centrally and use it to ensure compliance across all connected downstream systems. CDPs can also integrate with consent management tools like OneTrust or Gigya.

However, not all CDPs let you capture and manage consent directly. A 2022 report from CDP Institute notes that few CDPs offer full consent management capabilities. “Relatively few call themselves a consent management platform, but nearly all can use consent and preference data to govern access to customer profiles,” the report states.

When evaluating solutions, ask CDP vendors whether they store and use data in real time. Also ask if they store fine-grained consent information with additional metadata, such as the timestamp and channel where it was collected.

Consent Management Platforms and CDPs

With a CDP working with your consent management platform, you save time and money by automating the workflow that updates consent management changes across platforms and customer profiles. In addition, you can easily associate a customer’s profile with other service providers and third-party technologies to ensure management of user consent across platforms and channels.

Learn more about data privacy and governance best practices here. Staff Staff
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