But developing a solid layer of trust – as well as maintaining it – is more of a marathon than a sprint.
Building a brand that is based on trust is typically a long and complex procedure. It involves a lot of thinking, tactful acting, and multifaceted approaches that ought to be thoroughly planned and well-executed. Among the critical components of this process is approaching data privacy and security with sufficient devotion and resources.
Even the strongest brands are susceptible to malicious cyberattacks. It makes them capable of ruining their reputation and severing the layer of trust between the brand and its consumers. This is why modern brands must minimize the risk of such scenarios. Implementing proven best practices in terms of data privacy and their overall security helps with that.
Perform thorough data classification
You need to think about all the types of data that your organization collects and to whom it belongs. It is likely that itemizing is required by state law or federal guidance, especially if your business gathers personal data from your clients. So be sure to identify the types of personal data you collect and properly inform them of the ways you are using it.
What you should address here, includes the following:
- E-mail addresses
- Mailing Addresses
- Phone Numbers
- Credit Card Information, etc
There are numerous situations in which a company collects and uses personal information that belongs to its consumers. Data privacy laws are there to govern how businesses are gathering personal data. It also says in which ways they must indicate these processes to their clients.
Always be transparent about how and why data is collected
Transparency here is the key.
From your own perspective, it allows for quick and easy access to data regardless of whether those data sets are located or used. While from the user’s standpoint, it enables a clear overview of how you use their information, so it increases trust.
Invest in a strong Data Governance strategy and infrastructure
In order to achieve high levels of data privacy, companies must first have an effective and secure data governance plan in place. For this strategy to work well, it is critical to streamlining communication channels between all teams and departments. To do that, all individual employees should have a clear understanding of the following:
- How data is divided into different types and how they differ from one another
- Where data is stored, archived and managed
Be sure to invest in proper platforms, tools, and add-ons that could help you manage and secure your information, as well as help you optimize and automate various processes. That would be extremely time-consuming if performed manually. Think about using the right data storage programs for your unique workflow, deploying the best data privacy management software for your needs. As well as incorporating email archiving solutions that will help you with email-based data retention tasks.
Include Opt-Out Options and Procedures
Modern marketing strategies often involve sending out commercial email marketing campaigns. This tactic should include, as is required by the FTC, opt-out options for the user and these are to be listed in each email message. Your privacy statement is another document that should list an opt-out policy. This way your clients know about how you control their information.
This is something that will help you build trust within your user base as each customer is can have quick access to your opt-out policies and processes. It reassures them that you have their best interest in mind during marketing campaigns or other projects.
Also, don’t forget to list your organization’s contact info, name, website, address, and contact email. That helps your users to know they can always reach your representative in case something goes wrong or they simply have a question about your services or privacy policies.
Don’t forget about Effective Dates
Keep in mind to send email updates to your users or clients whenever you change and update your privacy policies or terms of service. These updates should as clear and concise as possible.
Most Common Data Collection Categories and Aspects to Consider
Your business should be clear about how you and your website gather, maintain and manage personal information. It concerns any information that belongs to your consumers. Information like email addresses, names, addresses, mobile telephone numbers, and other pieces of personal data is usually that kind of data. Also, make it clear that the amount of their personal information shared with your organization is on a voluntary basis. And that it is usually used to restrict certain access levels and/or features to the users who choose to provide less information.
Analytics and usage data
Most privacy policies disclose that the usage data a company collects (typically) includes the following:
- Internet service provider of the user
- The web browser type the user is using
- The operating system type the user is using
- User’s IP address
- The web pages the user viewed
- Session duration
- Time of page visits
- Crash logs…
Text messages and communication data
If your website allows visitors to communicate text messages between themselves (for example, social media platforms) or to exchange messages with your own organization (like customer support purposes), the users should know that your business has the right to keep this data indefinitely.
Most common Data Utilization aspects to consider
eCommerce businesses that sell products online typically collect and process consumer information. So they can ship and deliver the items to their end-users or make the product available some other way. Your policy should also disclose how it utilizes this data.
Customer service data
If your business collects user data for customer support purposes – this typically involves billing and payment issues, returns, guarantees, cancellations, repairs, replacements, rescheduling, etc – your policy should also inform them about the ways your company might be using this type of information.
General company announcements
Some businesses use personal data (like email addresses) to make periodic general announcements to their clients and users. If you send updates and notifications about your organization and/or your website, especially if these tend to be of a marketing nature or they include a marketing component in them, be sure to be clear about it.
Don’t forget to disclose all the ways the website shares data with any potential third-party vendors that take part in your operations, processes, and projects. Any organization that forwards and shares this data with any other business entity must be open about it to its customers. You earn trust by your transparency and by doing your due diligence to make sure their data stays protected regardless of who is handling it.
In order to build a brand and develop trust around it, you need the right levels of consistency and thoroughness. It takes time to build a strong relationship with your clients and consumers, but it could all fall apart in a second if your company suffers a data breach that jeopardizes personal data which doesn’t belong to you.
Make sure to create business privacy policies by following the latest laws and performing best practice strategies that bring industry-standard results. Worrying about if your and your consumer data is safe and protected at all times is energy-draining and reduces productivity. This is why you should approach these security-focused processes professionally and with the right resources.