From shopping histories to demographic details, average consumers now understand the value of their data, and increasingly, expect to be rewarded for sharing such information with brands, publishers and other digital gatekeepers.
That was the thesis presented this week by Rick Chavez, general manager of the Online Services Division at Microsoft, at one New York conference.
In fact, 59% of people say they are more likely to buy from a brand that rewards them for their information, according to Microsoft’s latest Digital Trends study, which relied on a global survey of some 8,000 consumers.
In addition, with the help of Future Laboratory and IPG Mediabrands, Chavez and his team have identified several new consumer trends, including a demand for more “intelligent” relationships with technology.
For example: “We want intuitive ‘off’ modes that don’t require action, but that can be fully trusted,” Chavez explained in a related blog post this week.
“We want technology that disappears, but that doesn’t disconnect … In short, we want technology that’s on in the right way, and by ‘right’ we mean responsive to our needs in the moment … Not hyper-responsive, not intrusive and not constraining, but in the right way and at the right time.”
Chavez and company suggest that consumers have come to expect such intelligent relationships because we have entered what they term an “age of serendipity.”
“While in the marketing world, we may feel like it’s all programmatic all the time, consumers want encounters that surprise, challenge and enhance opportunities for discovery,” Chavez blogged.
“The Age of Serendipity is about receiving something at the right time and place, and in the right frame of mind,” Chavez added. “Give consumers a pleasant surprise, and they’re more likely to build a long-term relationship with [brands].”
Although not quite a clear mandate, a full 50% of consumers are interested in using products and services designed to surprise and delight them, Microsoft found in its Digital Trends study.