PwC: Transformative effect of new privacy data

By Janet Brice
Three-step road map for consumer markets to win the trust and data of its consumers, according to consultants PwC...

New data privacy regulations could have a transformative effect on the consumer market reveals a new report from PwC who have produced a road map for companies to win the trust and data of consumers in the future.

It was revealed that just under half of CEOs in the consumer market expect new legislation could require the private sector to financially compensate people for personal data that companies collect.  

“Combined with new data privacy regulations, this change could have a transformative effect,” comment PwC who point out that consumers are recognising the commercial value of data and will start to get support from regulators.

“In the past two years have seen a raft of new regulations around data privacy and security - with scores more in the pipeline in statehouses and governments around the world… It’s unlikely the evolving regulatory action will stop with the current legislation,” said PwC.

Consumer market CEOs surveyed by PwC believed - by two-to-one – that it is likely governments could break up the behemoth companies that now dominate the technology market. “If some of these companies are broken up, the disruptive ripple effect on the consumer markets industry might resemble a tsunami.”

Improving the customer experience (CX) was identified by 66% of the retail and consumer industries polled by PwC as their top investment priority. But the challenge for CEOs is to balance this with a better data enabled CX and protecting privacy relating to data ownership.

“Mindful of a raft of new regulations - and the damage from highly publicised leaks of personally identifiable information - consumer markets companies are becoming more sensitive (49%) about the risks of mishandling their customers’ data,” says the report.

“The risks run the gamut, from failing to delight customers or anticipate their needs to misusing their private information to falling prey to a sophisticated cyberattack. At the centre of all these opportunities and risk is consumer data, and, increasingly, the prerequisite to getting that data is trust,” comment PwC.

Three-step road map to win the trust and data of its consumers

So how should CEOs navigate the future? 

“The breadth, depth and quality of consumer data that companies hold are often central to their profitability, but CEOs must squarely face the fact that the zeitgeist around data ownership is very different from what it used to be and the change feels permanent,” comment PwC.

Companies can win a competitive advantage by following these three steps: 

1. Win trust
Protect your customers’ data and privacy                      

2. Win loyalty
Draw on that trust and data to build a better experience that will keep people coming back

3. Win hearts
Offer people something they want but don’t expect - before a competitor does

It was also revealed in the report, Consumer and retail trends 2020: Managing expectations around trust and data, that 47% of companies would be focusing on building their brand through social media platforms - as opposed to traditional advertising - and 30% would be prioritising and investing in Artificial Intelligence (AI).

“Driven by intense competition from tech-enabled companies, consumer markets CEOs continue to seek revenue growth through traditional means,” comment PwC.

A snapshot of PwC’s survey comparing consumer markets with global trends include:

  • Only 50% of consumer markets are confident about their organisation’s revenue growth over the next 12 months – compared to 45% globally
  • A total of 33% of consumer markets feel the availability of skills and cyber threats (29%) will be a negative factor for growth – compared to 32% and 33% globally
  • 71% of consumer market CEOs worry about the increasing complexity of cyber threats
  • 49% report growing public concerns over data privacy
  • 64% of CEOs believe governments will increasingly introduce competition/antitrust legislation to break up dominant technology companies
  • 68% of CEOs believe governments will increasingly introduce legislation to force the private sector to regulate content on the internet (including social media)

“These survey statistics underscore how technology related issues, such as CX, privacy and market concentration are increasingly driving a convergence between citizen stakeholders and regulator stakeholders - with powerful consequences for the industry,” comment PwC.

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