Zero party data: What on earth is it and why do marketers need it?

Just what marketers need - another buzzword. CMO takes a look at exactly what Zero party data is.

If you’ve been around the marketing traps for the last year, you may have heard of ‘Zero Party Data’.

However, you may be unclear as to what it actually. Is it a fancy way of saying first-party data? Is it a different kind of data altogether? Are we not already inundated with too much data? How many more data categories do we really need as marketers? The trick to understanding what Zero Party Data is lies within two words: Privacy and value.


According to a recent Forrester report, zero-party data (ZPD) is data a customer intentionally and proactively shares with a brand, and might include preference centre data, purchase intentions, personal context, and how the individual wants the brand to recognise them. This differs from first-party data (FPD), Forrester says, because while brands own FPD, they do not own ZPD. Instead, consumers grant a brand the right to use their ZPD for the purpose of a particular intent or value exchange.

Therefore, unlike other forms of data, ZPD should never be sold without consent, and should be considered ‘fluid’.


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