Unlocking Data’s Potential Through Clean Rooms

Author: Izabela Hansmann, Principal Product Director, Solutions

We live in the age of data. There’s no denying it. From the moment we wake up and reach for our smartphone on the bedside table to the moment we go to bed, we are constantly creating and consuming data. While consumers use this data to help make purchasing decisions, brands are using it to serve up more relevant content and to build stronger customer relationships. 

However, data collection can be tricky and carries a lot of risk, especially as new regulations like GDPR and CCPA reinforce the need to collect it ethically. As marketers navigate this data revolution, the notion of clean rooms – safe and compliant spaces where two or more parties can share data – has emerged as a “trendy” way to ethically collect and share data. 

While not a new marketing concept, clean rooms are gaining traction again. The term “clean room” is  borrowed from the manufacturing industry and scientific community, and is used to refer to a place that is free of contaminants. The marketing and technology communities have adopted the term and expanded its meaning to include:

  • A trusted safe zone for data storage, collaboration and sharing 

  • An environment that requires all included data to go through a hygiene process and to be linked on a common identity key

  • A neutral zone with strict access controls based on specific use cases, e.g. overlap analysis, joint analytics, campaign measurement, etc.

As the threat of third-party cookie elimination looms (resulting in advertisers having less data to make marketing decisions), bringing together PII data has become even more critical to gain a single, holistic view of your customers and prospects to understand when, where and how to best connect with them. However, not all advertisers find sharing PII data with partners  appealing, possible or even ethical. They don’t want to share sensitive data with third-parties, who in reality may pose a reputational risk to their own business.

Clean rooms offer an opportunity to collaborate in a way that protects all parties, including brands and their consumers. Creating an identity graph where all data can be safely linked and shared by only sharing keys (never PII) is the foundation of a well-designed data clean room. This approach offers a neutral zone for marketers to ethically share consumer data that helps create a holistic view of marketing activity. 

Clean rooms allow marketers to maximize the insights they gain and the value they offer, ultimately creating more meaningful customer relationships.  This collaboration can unlock co-branding and loyalty opportunities that help brands with similar prospect bases drive greater engagement. Think about a credit card company and restaurant sharing data to provide relevant offers, or insurance companies working with automotive companies to ensure a safe connected car experience. 

Unbiased measurement is another advantage. By enabling neutral third-party measurement , a clean room would allow you to bring together your first-party data and publishers’ exposure data for true omnichannel measurement giving you the power to know where to spend your next marketing dollar.

In a world where data regulations and privacy practices are constantly evolving, clean rooms enable creative marketers, brands, publishers and agencies to find new and innovative ways to work together to solve multiple problems, all while establishing a safe, privacy-conscious space to store and share data to enhance consumer trust. 

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