How the Smart Use of Second-Party Data Can Create Higher Value

7th Jul 2017

Today, content producers are beginning to put a lot more consideration into personalisation, tailoring searches according to the data it holds and has access to concerning users and viewers. When personalisation processes are deployed, relevancy comes into its own, seeking to deliver a more targeted service, placing the content in the hands of those that really want to see it including advertising.

Second-party data is promising to deliver greater benefits for businesses, and is certainly generating interest (and income) for those that have it. Many in the media and retail industries are waking up to the powerful information second-party data give to their business models.

What is second-party data?

Second-party data is first-party data that is licenced by another company, such as, but not limited to:

  • Email address
  • Content consumption data
  • Login identity
  • Phone numbers
  • Employment data
  • Website navigation data
  • IP address
  • Geo address (and even hot spot sometimes)

The difference between first or second-party data and third-party data is that the origin of first and second-party data is known – its exact source – where third-party data has a lower competitive advantage because it is less trusted, as third-party data often has an unknown source or is widely available for anyone to access.

Increasing interest in second-party data

An interesting recent study by Forrester discovered that a second-party data strategy is slowly winging its way to the top of the priority list, with an estimation that within 2 years, all retail and durable goods companies will have a strategy in place for the use of second-party data.

Currently 48% of durable goods companies and 54% of retail companies have a second-party data strategy already in place. Over half of these retailers have noticed an increase in sales, with branded marketing campaigns noticing greater efficiency in marketing and advertising campaigns.

How does it work?

For media professionals, the key focus must be in the structure of data, which often is performed on a data management platform (DMP). This process is key if second-party data transactions are to be successful. Corporate and client information, sales and marketing data can be effectively identified and sorted into target audiences.

Of course, the use of second-party data will be specific to each industry and further sectors within that industry, but generally, when targeting an advertising perspective, the second-party data can become profitable when applied to a separate partner program that differs from the original aim of the business.

In simpler terms:

  • Identification of potential partners – which brand or product are my clients likely to be interested in (apart from mine)
  • Determination of viewer intention – what do we want our clients to do? – e.g. stay on our site for longer
  • Identification of data licensing – platforms, duration, changeability
  • Privacy concerns – consumer policies, trust, consent

With the future standards for privacy and data sharing coming up with some serious overhaul opportunities in the coming months, and bearing in mind that businesses in all sectors are planning a second-party data strategy within two years, it is never too early to begin putting in place some research at the very least to determine improvements in your strategy.

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