Consumers are ever wary of details being shared and tracked
A new report suggests that consumers are wary of being tracked by online behavioural advertising and marketers need to build trust.
Marketers must build ‘trust’ for online behavioural advertising
Tuesday, July 26 2011 by Andy Carter
Managed search engine marketing specialists will need to be aware of building trust if they are to make online behavioural advertising (OBA) work for their clients, a new report suggests. Research from internet security firm TRUSTe reveals a need for increased, proactive measures to build consumer trust and understanding about OBA.
The poll found that 40 per cent of consumers said that they believe the websites that they have registered with have shared their name with advertisers without their consent, despite most not doing this. In addition, 43 per cent believe their current location has been passed on without them knowing, while 30 per cent thought contact details had been shared.
“The findings of this survey indicate that the advertising industry has more work to do to address consumer concerns about online privacy,” said Fran Maier, president of TRUSTe.
It comes after a study from Stanford University claimed many online advertisers continue to track people’s web activity after users think they have opted out, prompting some US legislators to call for the Federal Trade Commission to regulate online tracking. In Europe, new legislation already requires websites to make it clear how users can opt out, though companies in the UK will have until next year before they have to meet the requirements on cookies, the Information Commissioner has said.
“At the same time, the survey also reveals a tremendous benefit for the advertising community to improve trust by improving privacy practices and embracing the advertising industry icon and standards,” added Ms Maier.
Indeed, 32 per cent of respondents to the poll now claim that more than one in four online advertisements is relevant to them, compared to 12 percent in 2008.
Ms Maier suggests that to allay privacy fears, marketers and brands need to provide “clear and concise” information on how OBA works.
Mike Dean, president of Experian Consumer Direct, said the report shows how it is “important for advertisers to assume responsibility for educating consumers about how targeted online advertising works and how they benefit from receiving relevant ads”.
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