CANDDi Blog

Loyalty and Privacy

Published 13 Sep 2013 by Frederic Abrard, CANDDi
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It's really hard to do personal service on a large scale. Once a store or chain gets to a certain size, with a large enough number of staff, it is next to impossible to get know each customer. Unless of course you systematise the process of getting to know customers- enter the reward card.

okIt’s really hard to do personal service on a large scale. Once a store or chain gets to a certain size, with a large enough number of staff, it is next to impossible to get know each customer. Unless of course you systematise the process of getting to know customers: enter the reward card.

There’s a lot of cynicism about reward cards from privacy advocates and I understand why: on face value it feels pretty ‘big brother’ to have a large corporation collect such detailed information about your purchasing habits. But though the primary motivation of the stores is clearly increasing profits through the analysis of this data, there is also a benefit for the consumer. Otherwise they wouldn’t sign up.

Reward cards are as close as we can get to personal service for large organisations. They get to know us and offer us more of what we want and even discounts on those products. Just like our local shopkeeper may have done when the relationship was one to one - at least in some idealised historical world. We sign up for reward cards because we benefit, and because most of us - at least those who are aware of the exchange - are happy to swap information about our purchasing behaviour for discounts and that very marginal version of the personal touch.

Where I believe the exchange could be improved is if the terms were explained a little more explicitly. If we were told what we were giving up in return for our discounts, and how the data that we were handing over was going to be used. This would go some way to reducing the fears of privacy advocates.

This is the approach we are taking with CANDDi. We see part of the role of CANDDi to be effectively a personalisation and reward tool, enabling online prospects to be treated as if they were physically entering a store and being identified and looked after personally by a shop assistant who knows them. But we are making sure that in systematising this process we are being as transparent as possible with the customer so that they know what information we are gathering in order to give them a better service.

In addition to working with our customers to ensure that they present the appropriate information to their prospects, we will be incorporating a personal privacy console into CANDDi. Anyone will be able to see exactly what information CANDDi has captured about them and edit the permissions of each company that has captured data to use that information as they see fit. Remember that CANDDi does not share information between companies: whatever you share with one of our customers, stays with that customer and goes nowhere else.

Look out for the CANDDi privacy console coming soon.

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