Are you already inwardly groaning a little bit because our latest episode is all about privacy? Yeah. We know. We’ve been tracking your emotions, along with your first name, your last name, your birthdate, your government ID number, and your household income for the past ten years. Actually, we just bought that last one (but good for you on the career growth front!). Okay. You know we’re just joshing you (which makes sense, since producer Josh Crowhurst stepped in as a guest co-host on this episode), and you know that because you trust us! And THAT’S quite the rambling setup for our discussion with Jodi Daniels, the founder and CEO of Red Clover Advisors and co-author of Data Reimagined: Building Trust One Byte at a Time.
0:00:06.2 Announcer: Welcome to the Analytics Power Hour. Analytics topics covered conversationally and sometimes with explicit language. Here are your hosts, Moe, Michael, and Tim.
0:00:22.1 Michael Helbling: Hey everybody, welcome. It’s the Analytics Power Hour and this is episode 217. There’s some things you just have to get right. That’s why taking a flight for example, there’s so much rigmarole around it. Flying a plane, generally, you just have all these pre-flight checks looking at each and everything on the plane, walking around it, checking and double-checking everything just to make sure. And you do all of this no matter how long the flight you’re taking is gonna be. So you could do a bunch of checks for a 20-minute flight and spend more time checking the plane than flying it, but you still do it every single time on every single plane. And such care and concern, it makes a lot of sense when you’re gonna be up in the air and the only thing between you and terminal velocity is some pieces of thin metal and an engine or two. If you’re listening to this on a plane right now, don’t worry, you’re gonna be just fine.
0:01:14.1 Tim Wilson: [laughter] You’re good.
0:01:15.9 MH: Well, maybe we should start thinking like that in terms of things like privacy in our industry. It can have a tremendous impact on all that we do with data. All right, let me just pause and introduce my two co-hosts for this episode. First up, Josh Crowhurst… Hey, taking the co-host chair today. I love it. Welcome.
0:01:38.3 Josh Crowhurst: Hey, happy to be here.
0:01:39.8 MH: Very good having you here as well. And Tim Wilson, of course, as always, welcome.
0:01:45.9 TW: I’m never flying again.
0:01:48.2 MH: Well, after this episode we’ll never do data and analytics over again either.
0:01:53.6 TW: I’ll never open my laptop again.
0:01:54.8 MH: Yeah, there you go. And I’m Michael Helbling. All right, well we needed a pilot for this flight. Someone who could help us or this show, whatever, I’m taking the analogy too far, someone who could help us understand the privacy landscape a bit better. Jodi Daniels is the founder and CEO of Red Clover Advisors, a privacy consulting firm. She’s the author of the book Privacy Reimagined and she has her own podcast, She Said Privacy/ He Said Security, but today she is our guest. Welcome to the show, Jodi.
0:02:23.9 Jodi Daniels: Well, hello. I’m so excited to be part of this little flight journey we have going on here.
0:02:30.7 TW: Should be a welcome back. This is like welcoming back from a past appearance, right? We had you for a mini episode I think way back when.
0:02:39.9 JD: We did.
0:02:40.9 MH: Yeah, it was like a mini bonus episode. But this is the real thing and it’s great because we go way back, Jodi. We both live here in the Atlanta area so we’ve gotten to hang out industry-wise for a long time and collaborate professionally a couple of times. So it’s awesome to have you on the show. Well, I think maybe just to kick it off, so let’s talk a little bit about the data privacy landscape just to catch our listeners up. I’m sure pretty much everyone has got some concept of what’s going on, but maybe just start with some big picture, what’s happening in the industry today?
0:03:18.2 JD: Sure. Well, most people are probably aware of our friend GDPR, the General Data Protection Regulation in Europe. And that is really the turning point in privacy. Believe it or not, there were actually privacy laws before that, but this one is that modern, a wake up call if you will. And it became effective May, 2018. So at the time of this recording we’re actually coming up on its five-year anniversary. It’s gonna be depending on where you are in the world going off to kindergarten soon. So with that afterwards, California introduced and passed CCPA and it took a little while for any other states to catch up but once they did, as expected we started to have other states here in the US and globally other laws around the world. At the end of 2023, we’re gonna have five states that will be effective with new privacy laws.
0:04:15.8 JD: And just to make sure everyone’s aware, we have data breach laws, meaning if you classify under very specific kind of dataset, then you could have a data breach and then you get a beautiful letter in the mail that says your data’s been compromised, sign up here for free credit monitoring. That’s super different than the data privacy laws and that is what is new and it’s much more encompassing. The definition of data’s really different. So I want people to understand, ’cause sometimes they think, no, no, no, we’ve had those for a while and it’s true we have data breach laws, but we haven’t had these comprehensive statewide data privacy laws. And then around the world countries have basically taken GDPR, some have copied it and just kind of changed it to their language and their call letters. And then others have modified it a little bit differently.
0:05:04.4 JD: And also along the way, which I’m sure you all have talked about many times, is what some of the big tech is doing, namely one that is named a fruit. And they’ve made some significant changes which has also impacted how people can use data. And it comes from a privacy lens. When you put all of that in a big cauldron and pot, it’s garnered a lot of attention in the media. It’s made companies have to figure out, oh, I have to do something a little bit different. And it’s also changed consumer sentiment and that is why privacy is cool and why we’re talking about it today.
0:05:40.4 TW: So, one thing I like the way that you put it all together is kind of, you said it’s kind of a cauldron of different, there’s the tech Apple and company, there’s the regulatory, there’s the data breach and the security piece of it. To me, it seems like most of the discussion in the space from the business and analytics side is how do we stay compliant? It’s a fear-based, how do we not get in trouble? And one of the things I really liked about the book is that you’re kind of, I think making the case to say, why don’t you frame it more as an opportunity or as an asset to actually build trust with your consumers? So I guess, can you talk about that a little? To me it feels like it’s just an overwhelming fear-based mentality as opposed to, “Hey, this is somewhere where we could actually develop a competitive advantage relative to our competitors.”
0:06:39.4 JD: I’ve been saying this for a really long time about the idea of trust before it was a cool buzzword I feel like in 2022 and 2023. And a lot of companies won’t do anything unless they have to. Even people-wise, sometimes you realize it’s the right thing to do and other times you only do it because you absolutely have to. And here we have to, there’s, I think most companies generally speaking don’t really choose which laws they want to adhere to, privacy or not. As a good company business steward, you should be complying and that should be the floor, that should be the bare minimum. And where we are, if you look at any plethora of statistics, some of the ones I really like are from the Pew Research Center. It’s north of 50% and there’s all different slices and dices of it all you analytics people would love that.
0:07:29.7 JD: But that consumers, which includes the B2B buyers, won’t buy something over privacy and security concerns. If I’m making a decision between company A and company B, whether it’s in the B2B market or the B2C market, why wouldn’t I emphasize how I’m handling privacy and security? I’m listing every other feature out there. Here’s why you should trust me to do business with me. Here’s why I’m going to deliver this product and service. Why wouldn’t it also be around privacy and security? And I really believe that in all things business, you’re building a relationship and part of that relationship should be about the data. And all relationships in my opinion, are based in trust. Therefore, I think companies that do beyond the bare minimum of compliance, which they need to do, check the box. It’s kind of like Michael’s flight checklist. You need to fly the plane safely. But if you have an amazing experience from the beginning to the end of that flight and you trust them to get you there on time, but also to deliver a lovely experience, which one are you going to pick? Hopefully the one with the better experience.
0:08:35.8 JC: Yeah, I think one other point that came up was around there’s compliance, which you mentioned is the bare minimum. But there’s also kind of a mindset and especially working in marketing data analytics specifically, there’s this mindset of like, well we should collect everything because we might need it or we’re gonna throw it into a model and the model is gonna figure it out. And I feel like that’s a really, such a pervasive mindset. So that goes beyond okay compliance, but what is the right thing to do? How do we do right by our customer? How do we not over collect, how do we not do things that customers might see as creepy? So I guess, how can we drive that change in mindset from yeah, collect it all, figure it out later data hoarding, to collecting really what we need and what we truly have a purpose for and a customer would understand and be happy to share with us.
0:09:39.3 JD: I have two thoughts for that. The first one is if we go back to our friend compliance and having to the future of the laws and really where we are now and going forward, it’s all about collect the bare minimum. It actually says data minimization because companies have collected so much for so long and now they’re realizing no, no, no actually you get to collect what you need and you get to use why you actually need it. And oh, you have to tell me what you’re going to do. And that’s what you do in the privacy notice. At the same time, if you think about the different kinds of questions and data that people are trying to collect, and if I don’t trust you as a company, then I’m not going to give you the data or I’m going to make up the data.
0:10:21.7 JD: So if you force me to answer a bunch of questions for me to hit submit and I don’t actually trust you, you got data but you don’t actually know if it’s right. Oftentimes we think, oh, it’s at the beginning, I have to ask everything about you right now because it’s going to be so much harder to get it later. And you’re right, it is probably harder to get it later except if I don’t know who you are and you ask some questions that I don’t feel comfortable giving you and you make me answer them, congratulations, you’ve just change your model and really bad data. And everyone listening, just ask yourself, have you ever picked the, I don’t wanna answer or have you ever picked the wrong answer because you just know you have to get through? You’re probably just like all the customers you’re asking and instead you need to do it slowly. And even if you get a smaller dataset, it will be more accurate. And we think about lookalike and predictability. Well, the ability to be able to actually have the right dataset will reap rewards far more than collecting it all at the beginning.
0:11:22.3 TW: Is there also, I feel like there’s this mentality that we have this belief that we need that data has a longer life than a lot of data has, like somebody having clicked on a button on my website three years ago is of no use. Two years ago is of no use. One year ago is of no use, couple of months ago marginally. So I think that that feels like another part of the shift. It’s like we have to collect it because if we need it and we haven’t collected it, the skies are gonna fall. As opposed to saying, “No, wait a minute, if we decide that there is a legitimate purpose and we can legitimately maintain trust and start collecting it, we’ll now start collecting it.” And it’s, it feels like… It does feel kind of ivory tower. Wouldn’t it be better if we weren’t overloaded with, overwhelmed with data?
0:12:17.3 TW: A bunch of it what is junk and a bunch of it will never be useful. And it’s opening us up to privacy violations if we just did a reset and said, “What do we really need? What’s the bare minimum that we need right now?” And I guess there’s the other part of it is also flipping it around that once you start collect, it’s hard to stop collecting data just organizationally. Once something is being collected, it feels like organizations are terrible about saying, “Do I still need to collect that? We thought it might be useful, but we don’t even sell the product that we were asking that that question for.” It’s just, this is depressing.
0:13:00.1 JD: It’s kind of the FOMO, fear of missing out. If I don’t collect everything right now and Tim, you’re absolutely right. What I collect now people think it’s gonna be accurate for a long period of time and it’s accurate, potentially accurate with very high chance of actually not being depending on the kind of data you’re asking about for a really short period of time. And I really believe if we go back to kind of this idea of relationships and building trust, that you start small and you continue to get to know and refine and then you go back, you ask more. I feel like I’ve gotten something valuable. I trust you, I’m willing to give you a little bit more. And we continue on in that conversation. In the book, one of my favorite stories is a particular company who will not let me, they’re not letting me actually correct the data that they have on me because I bought furniture from them when my child was a baby and I cannot get out of the baby things. Guess what? The person has grown now. I don’t need that information. And there’s no place for me to give data. I trust them. I’m mad at them, but I’m trust them. I want to give you data, I want to update this. And yet here is a situation where companies are missing the opportunity to actually collect data and build that relationship.
0:14:21.1 TW: That example’s, it does… I can see the shortcut that even an analyst would say, ’cause I think that you’re also using that example like, what is the birthdate of your children? Or something that’s overly intrusive. And I think, well, okay, they could also ask, are you interested in furniture for infants or toddlers or whatever. As an analyst I’m like, “Well, it sucks if you ask the question of like, you want toddler information because two years from now, you probably don’t still want toddler. If I have the birthdate of your child, then I can just always do subtraction from today minus whatever the date is. And my model can automatically adjust, I can… ” It’s one of those where sometimes it does feel like it’s shortcuts of saying, “Well, if we’re gonna ask this general thing, if we ask a more precise thing, then we can use the data forever.”
0:15:18.9 TW: I don’t think in that case the organization did, they have a… They’re kind of forgetting that time passes and kids grow up fast. But that’s another one. What do you really need? I need to know what furniture I should be marketing to you in the near term, but I have in my mind that I’m gonna follow the life cycle of your child to where I’m marketing to you to buy them standup assist chairs when they move into the nursing home or something like this. Just this kind of silly, but it’s like we have these grand visions of what we could do with the data and 0.02 of those come to fruition but we’ve got all this other legacy crap and bad practices that we’re stuck with. Well, this is much more depressing than I thought it was gonna be.
0:16:07.3 JD: Not depressing, opportunistic, there’s opportunity here.
0:16:14.2 TW: This may be a little bit of a shift but there was something else I don’t think I’d fully thought through of mutually assured incomprehensibility, where you’ve got the IT department that is trying to check boxes of making the technology work. And then you’ve got the legal team and then you have the analytics team and then you have the C-suites and they’re all kind of motivated by different things. How often do you run into that as a problem that you’ve got somebody completely aligned and understanding what you’re trying to teach them and then you just hit a brick wall because you need other departments on board in part of the conversation.
0:17:00.9 JD: It happens a lot. And I don’t think privacy is unique in that challenge. Why I think privacy has this challenge is because one, it’s new, two, it’s often thought of as a compliance activity like we just talked about. Where it’s this, if I don’t do something, then there’s a fine. And many of the executives will say, “Well, I wanna take the least approach possible for whatever it is I have to do.” I wanna do the bare minimum without appreciating how it can help their business, how they might not realize how it impacts their data and their connection with their customers. How this is also a marketing activity and that shows up in a couple places. One, it shows up kind of depending on the company but let’s just pretend you’re a tech company or anything where you list a lot of features on the site.
0:17:48.4 JD: You just, you have a very heavy digital presence for trying to convince the customer to buy or to call you. Well, if I’m gonna list all these features, I should be listing the privacy piece as well. Or if your product’s really data heavy, anyone in the health and financial space, if I don’t feel comfortable, I’m not gonna give you my date, I’m not even gonna sign up with you. So their privacy is actually and should be part of the marketing and the sales conversation. But if there’s no one there to translate that, to be able to explain how it’s not just I have to have a cookie banner or this is what the cookie banner has to say or have to have a privacy notice and this is what it has to say, how it’s actually a core part of the operations because then that’s how we really flip it and make it that opportunity piece, then that’s a missing opportunity. And then the other is where if you were to have any kind of incident…
0:18:43.0 JD: You aren’t complying with the privacy law, you have some type of security thing, guess who also has to be part of the conversation? Not just all the executives and IT and legal who has to deal with and clean up the mess, but PR and communications. Now you’re spending all your time trying to curb the story to make sure it doesn’t spiral out of control, but actually if all the time had been spent proactively then that marketing and PR team wouldn’t have to be dealing with that problem. All that being said, trying to get someone to understand all those different pieces, how it fits in their company, what they need to be doing a little bit differently in that translation is challenging. And often privacy gets kind of anointed to whoever is either appointed or actually raises their hand and says, “No, hey, this is important,” and maybe a few people listen to them, but not always everybody.
0:19:43.8 TW: And that person winds up having… Needs to have a real strong, I guess, communication and relationship building knack I guess, trust within the… So they’re not treated as like, oh, I gotta go to the privacy lunch and learn. That seems tough.
0:20:05.6 MH: Well, but I think that’s also part of how us analysts had to figure things out for a long time, ’cause we’d come along with really bad news about your marketing campaign from time to time, and it’s all about trying to position it, and I like the way Jodi, that you talk about it, which is, it’s not just, oh, I have to do this thing that I don’t like doing, and it’s hard, it’s making my life more difficult but embracing the opportunistic side of it like you described. So that it gives some leverage or some levers to try to be less of the negative person like you’re describing Tim, ’cause nobody likes to be that person. Or the classic IT example always says no to everything, right? Can I put this? No, you can’t do that. Okay. Well.
0:20:55.0 JD: If you think of this another way, what comes to mind is HR and benefits. If you’re a certain size company, you have to offer certain benefits, and from a paperwork perspective, it’s really annoying, and those people who have to do all that probably don’t love it. At the same time, everyone wants their benefits. If you’re a company trying to recruit people, then what do you tend to do? You tend to say, “Hey, look at these awesome benefits,” and do you only offer the bare minimum or do you try and ask your employees, what else would you like? What else is important to you? And then what do you do? You shout it from the rooftops, not because you have to have benefits and fill out 400 piles of paperwork, you have to do that, but because you want people and you want happy people who are going to work there, the same is true from a customer’s perspective. If I’m engaging with the brand and the company and I need to give you data, well, yep, there’s going to be some compliance pieces that you have to do because you have data. You wanna go above and beyond, you wanna be able to lure all of those customers and prospects and give you more data and feel good about it.
0:22:00.1 JD: And that is the opportunity, “Hey, trust us, look at us. We’re awesome, we’re great, and here’s why, here’s why you should engage with our brand,” and that to me is the competitive edge, and it’s a big competitive edge right now because we’re talking and not everyone’s doing it. At some point, this is gonna be table stakes, and the table stakes will just keep getting even higher above and beyond, just there’s a law, and you have to go above and beyond. If company A, if your competitors aren’t doing this, then you should be. That right there is its own competitive edge, you just can go a little bit more above, I think you should go higher than just a little bit, but you could at least go a decent amount before your competitors.
0:22:44.9 TW: But if a competitor… How does that work on a… Putting it front and center, and even proactively communicating, we’re taking our collection and use of your data as a consumer very, very seriously. Now, you’ve kind of raised a privacy a little flag if, say competitor A is doing nothing right, they never say anything about it, how many… They’re working without a net and that they’re more likely to get in trouble and have something kind of blow up, but from a consumer perspective, the consumer, if the consumer goes and thinks, “Oh, thank God, I don’t have one of those stupid consent banners on this website,” where’s the tension, they’re trying to… They’re coming to buy a juicer from your website, you can’t… Finding the balance, and again, I think in the book you’re like, you can do shitty consent banners or you can do playful consent banners that also convey that you’re taking it seriously. Not playful and that you’re not taking it seriously. But is there a risk there that if you actually say, “Let’s talk about privacy,” and they’re like, “Wait a minute, I wasn’t even thinking about my data,” it’s not like they’re necessarily gonna go to some other competitor and say, “Oh, now I need to think more carefully about how they’re treating my data.”
0:25:42.4 JD: So the more honest and transparent and the more you can kinda connect it to your brand is where I think you can really make a difference. Aside from just the cookie banner, which you don’t always actually need a cookie banner. Again, kind of depends on where you are, but let’s say you can go beyond that cookie banner, you have companies building trust pages, trust centers. Just this last week, Zoom, as an example, we were talking about Zoom at the beginning of our podcast recording, so Zoom is creating a trust center, and they’re listing, here’s all the certifications that they have from a security perspective. They’re gonna list, here’s what we’re doing from a privacy point of view. Someone who might be a little concerned or curious, what is this company doing? I could go there and check it out. They’re just a example, top of news right now, so I will bring them up, but there’s a lot of companies doing something pretty similar in a not long policy point of view but a very visually representative approach, here’s what we’re doing with your data. Hey, are you the person who actually cares and you wanna learn more after you click on that cookie banner, you’ve just shown up at my site? Well, here is what I have for you.
0:26:51.8 TW: It’s funny, I read a book recently that they kinda talked about all the things that Zoom had not baked in some of this thinking from the get go.
0:26:58.0 JC: Yes, I was just thinking about that.
0:27:01.4 TW: You might be familiar with that book since you co-wrote it, but that does actually mean it’s interesting, ’cause you’re talking about Zoom now so if anyone hasn’t, if you haven’t read the book, if you read the book, Zoom… Anybody who’s remotely in this area remembers how Zoom kinda shat the bed when they blew up during the pandemic, but that’s another case, privacy from the privacy and the design, and I feel like there’s another parallel to analytics and to QA kind of the like, “Hey, we’ve done this cool thing. Now, let’s go through the checklist of legal, regulatory, QA, data collection, privacy compliance happens at the end.” Can you talk about why, how that is and Zoom was held up as a great example of where they had not really baked into their product development and it really kind of bit ’em in the ass.
0:28:01.7 JD: It is a great example, which is why the trust center that they have today, and I almost said it, but I didn’t. Where some might say it’s really, it’s kind of late to do that but here they are and they have absolutely learned, and they’re now looking to try and be a model going forward. There’s a lot of other companies that are trying to do similar things, but when you have a really fast growing company, they’re very focused, and oftentimes the investors are pushing for sales, fast sales. Why do we have so many layoffs right now? Well, because now they have to show profitability, and it was always grow grow grow at the… We’re not gonna worry about anything else. Oh no, now actually we have to show profit. Well, now, we have people, that’s expensive, so bye-bye people and oh look, we’re profitable isn’t that amazing? So you have kind of this situation of focus on the sales and nothing else, and because most of those companies and investors have been focused on the compliance, fine, check the box piece of privacy, they said, “Well, that we’re lower risk, we’re not going to worry about it. And we’ll just cruise ahead with everything else.” In this situation, there was a really big opportunity which from a…
0:29:16.3 JD: Let’s get at the beginning of the pandemic, millions of people onto our platform, oh shoot, now that also presents millions of opportunities for bad actors to expose our platform to. Now they had big opportunity, big risk, and there’s no shortage of case studies, I’m sure out there to show what happened in that scenario. They had all kinds of problems and they had to settle for millions of dollars from the Federal Trade Commission, and there are companies that will never use Zoom, they lost a significant amount of trust out in the marketplace. It’s the same with many other companies where it’s seen as that legal red tape compliance thing, I’m low risk. Who’s coming after me? I don’t have to worry about it. It’s kind of if you’re on a highway and you think, “Oh, no, one’s gonna come after me if I speed.” Okay, you still shouldn’t speed for a long list of reasons, and instead, here’s how you should be a safe driver. Well, here, if people were to start putting it in the actual product development Tim, like you just said, thinking about it in the marketing campaigns, building the site with this in mind, it’s a whole lot easier to build it right from the beginning, than it is to try and now figure out how it goes into something.
0:30:32.0 JC: And is there also an aspect of that one where there’s kind of this like when you have new technology that’s the shiny, sexy new thing, and I think customers get caught up in, “Oh my God, this is so much more convenient than what we were doing before, and they get excited about it and they’re kind of blind to the risks. And then when something does go wrong, that kind of hurts the trust even more because you’re kind of blindsided. So was there an aspect of that as well with Zoom?
0:31:03.0 JD: I think that might have been part of it at the same time, because privacy is so new, people haven’t necessarily understood and they’re still learning how to think about the privacy risks. And as much as people don’t love legal, legal’s job is to point out the risks. The point of a contract is to find all the things that could go wrong and protect you, the company, and you hope you never have to deal with it. But the point of their job is to protect you and find all the loopholes and the risks. Well, because privacy is so new, a lot of companies don’t have that figured out yet, how to do that, but how many projects do happen? People listening, how many projects do you have where you’ve never been asked, “Hey, how many people do you need? How much is it going to cost?” Josh, you mentioned technology. What kind of technology are you gonna use? Those are ingrained, baked into people now. Well, the privacy pieces and security pieces, those are new, and it’s gonna take a while for… That’s the idea of privacy by design, security by design, you’re thinking of it. You would never have something without people by design or budget by design. No one would say, “I’m just gonna go get it and I don’t care what the budget is.”
0:32:19.2 JD: There’s definitely a finance by design and people by design, that’s been the way business has been conducted, these other risks aren’t as popular yet. And many people think, I’m not gonna worry about those. That’s not as big of a deal. And because it’s not that cross-functional approach, like we were just talking about, who’s all a part of the conversation, it ends up showing up with the contract at the end. Legal, because that’s their job, flags everything, then they’re seen as the no people, but they’re just doing their job. And if all of that backs up where it’s not so last minute, it’ll seem like everyone’s on the same team, because in the end of the day, we all are on the actual same team, but everyone has a different job in the company and you’re supposed to come with that angle. And so as we can move to that kind of collective team in advance thinking, then it won’t be quite as much of a surprise.
0:33:19.9 TW: Which it also seems like the by design, like the design phase for a project, because as you said, your earlier, not that every project isn’t starting late and it’s gonna wind up… The timeline pressure definitely ratchets up the further it progresses, but it does seem like having a privacy discussion upfront when there is a, here’s this cool thing we’re gonna do, there’s a better opportunity for that privacy champion to do some educating and to have the anecdotes in their back pocket of saying, “I know we’re excited about gathering all this data and then being able to do this modeling and being able to do this personalized targeting, but how would you feel if… ” And educating the team.
0:34:04.0 TW: I love that the framing of it of saying, these are people bringing complementary perspectives up front and not treating the privacy person is saying, “Oh, this means we’re gonna throw cold water on the whole project at the outset,” it’s like, “No, we’re just trying to make sure we’re designing something that actually is feasible and will build trust and will work.” Which may mean that we’re heading off the creepy factor a lot earlier, ’cause just the nature for an organization or project starts running and everybody gets locked into what’s gonna happen, there’s a bunch of inertia there, if you wait till the end. Whereas if you catch it up front and say, “Maybe we should rethink this,” and yeah, you’re not gonna be able to do that super, super cool thing, but guess what, you’re also not gonna be able to freak your customers out or have a big PR nightmare. So it’s always… It all comes back to getting the right people in the room at the outset to think about it.
0:35:09.2 JD: People on the bus, people in our co-pilot position as Michael would say, making sure we’re thinking about it in advance. You wouldn’t start flying the plane and then towards the end realize, oh gosh, we really should have checked that maintenance thing over there.
0:35:25.3 TW: Check fuel level. Then I was thinking…
0:35:26.7 MH: Yeah. Did you check the fuel?
0:35:29.1 TW: I was thinking of that as well, even in that pushing that analogy a little farther, that if you are, there is the pre-flight checklist, there’s the maintenance requirements, but if you’re an airline that says, “We’re actually gonna commit to having a higher level of maintenance staff so that when that yellow light comes on in the pre-flight, you’re not gonna sit here and wait for 45 minutes before we can get the maintenance crew over to check it out.” That communication tends to be the pilot on saying, “Well, we got this thing, we gotta get maintenance,” and when that starts to creep into the pilot’s voice that they’re getting annoyed that they’re having to wait so long for maintenance, I was like, “Oh well, if you were an organization that said, we actually really are concerned about your safety and these are the minimums, these are the things that we invest in to proactively do this stuff,” it is an opportunity. Unfortunately, I fly like one airline so I don’t have a compare and contrast, I have much more of a compare and contrast around my digital interactions with brands than I do with the airline experiences. I like that analogy. I don’t want Michael to think that he did a good thing with his intro. Let’s not interpret it that way.
0:36:44.7 MH: Well, you know I just… Another one up another one down. What can I say?
0:36:51.1 MH: Jodi, I have a question that’s a little bit of a left field, but I just, I’d love to get your perspective. From a user experience perspective, the application of privacy, especially in digital, is pretty clunky. It’s like you go to a website, and we talked a little bit about like, “Hey, use better language,” but from your point of view and as you envision the future, are privacy banners just gonna be something that’s forever now, or what do you think might the future look like? Could it be something different than that?
0:37:23.3 JD: Well, right now you have in the United States, a couple of those states that I mentioned at the beginning where… So we have California, and we have Colorado, Connecticut, Virginia, and Utah at the end of the year, several of those states are indicating that they want to have the kind of universal opt-out to be enabled and that companies have to listen to that, which means Jodi could go to the browser, click on “my global privacy control” as an example, now everyone has to listen, and so… Instead I wanna get a cookie banner that says opt in or opt out, I’m gonna get often a cookie banner that says, “Hi, we’ve listened to your signal. If you actually don’t want that signal on, then you can change it over here.” Kind of a different banner. I think you’re gonna have more of that. Even that is still really clunky. There’s a lot of people who… My parents would have no clue how to turn that on, but they might say, “Gosh, I don’t really want all of this.” I think we have a long way to go from the consumer side. The consumer controls are very clunky and I think are terrible.
0:38:29.3 JD: I think you’re gonna have a number of companies focus on that piece because they realize it’s terrible for the company and it’s terrible for the consumer. Until then, you’re gonna have stupid banners all around that are confusing and all over the place. What company A is doing, what company B is doing are not consistent. If you have implemented your cookie banner on your own and you don’t know if it is right, I highly recommend talking to someone who knows anything about cookie banners. Don’t follow the company next to you. I’ve seen that happen.
0:39:00.4 MH: I’ve seen that a lot.
0:39:00.8 JD: If you haven’t done a cookie audit. Highly recommend some type of an audit. I’ve seen that as well, where you have 30 sites and then there’s nothing. But going back to your specific question, I think we’re gonna have those banners for a little while, but I don’t think that banners are the long-term play. I think it’s going to be some type of technology tool that I can flag at the browser level to be able to do that.
0:39:22.0 MH: Yeah, people will look back on “Do Not Track”, as the first try at that, which didn’t really get off the ground very well, but also didn’t have a lot of legislation behind it at the time.
0:39:33.9 JD: Well, the reality though is, what is “track”? And that’s why “Do Not Track” didn’t go anywhere, because what’s the definition of “track”? I’m not sure global privacy control solved that. You just have a whole bunch of regulators who said, “I want it.”
0:39:49.2 TW: It was nice that Google Analytics 4 what came in with the consent mode, which is, that’s totally on the up and up and…
0:39:56.4 JC: Not confusing. [laughter]
0:39:57.0 MH: Come on, Tim.
0:39:57.6 TW: Not confusing at all.
0:40:00.2 MH: I have seen quite a few privacy banners that do absolutely nothing.
0:40:03.3 JD: We’ve seen banners that do nothing. I’ve seen banners with dark patterns. I’ve seen banners that have the wrong language on them. I’ve seen all kinds of banners. So if you’re gonna do anything, the worst I think, a no-no in cookie banner land is Michael, what you just said, “Have one, but it does nothing.” Don’t do that. And number two, is make sure you don’t have dark patterns. A dark pattern could be a box around the “Accept” or “Okay”, the positive thing you want them to do so you, the company, can drop those cookies. No extra better, bigger fonts. No bigger, better colors. No extra special boxes around those.
0:40:43.0 TW: We had a consent banner on the analyticshour.io for about a month that, not intentionally, but it definitely did nothing, no matter what you clicked. And it wasn’t until I was like, “Well, that’s not implemented correctly,” and I immediately fired the developer, which was me. [chuckle]
0:41:02.2 JD: Recognition Tim, is the first step.
0:41:05.3 MH: That’s right, yeah. First, we need a professional.
0:41:11.6 MH: Well, this has been an awesome conversation and I think very useful. This is something definitely people are struggling to get their arms around, and then some of the frustration that we feel a lot of times, I think you’ve described so well, Jodi, it’s like, well, place and time and think about how to progress it because it’s not the taking care of privacy that we’re really that frustrated with, it’s more the place we’re encountering it in the process or the lack of forethought that’s going into that from the beginning in a lot of companies. And that might be a better way to look at it. And there’s lots of opportunities as well. Anyway, really appreciate the conversation, that has been a lot of fun. Well, one thing we love to do is go around the horn and share a last call. That could be anything of interest that you think might be interesting to our listeners, and Jodi, you are our guest, do you have a last call you’d like to share?
0:42:08.7 JD: Well, in the spirit of trying to educate, I’m excited that I have two different sessions at a MBA class and a law school class coming up to be able to teach privacy to students so that they’re learning at the beginning what else they need to be thinking about when they’re implementing their whole new marketing campaign, or as a law school student, what is it that they need to be thinking about from a privacy point of view. I always really enjoy those and it’s super fun.
0:42:40.8 MH: Thanks.
0:42:41.7 TW: Nice. Get ’em early.
0:42:43.2 MH: Yeah, right? From the start. That’s right. Josh, what about you? What’s your last call?
0:42:49.2 JC: Hey, all right. So mine is, I’m gonna say pretty niche, but I’m gonna go for it. So I’ve been working on a bit of a side project that looks at hockey analytics, just as a fun non-marketing way to practise stats…
0:43:06.0 TW: The Canadian being on brand, there you go, okay.
0:43:10.1 JC: [laughter] Yeah, exactly. And so as part of that, I’ve actually discovered there’s a couple of really cool Twitter accounts that if you’re interested in ice hockey and analytics, definitely check them out, but even just from an analytic standpoint, it’s kind of cool. So the first one is Patrick Bacon @TopDownHockey. And what he does is he actually takes the event level data from hockey games and does predictive models, who’s likely to win this game, how effective is this player, and publishes those results publicly on Tableau Public. So that’s kind of a cool one from the actual modeling standpoint. But the other account that I really love is JFresh, who then takes those models and does really neat visualizations of them and gives these summaries.
0:43:58.1 JC: It’s really kind of an example of that data storytelling that we talk about all the time, giving the insight and the, what does this really mean? And engaging in conversation with his followers, so I thought it’s kind of inspiring, it’s kind of cool, it’s kind of nerdy. Then also JFresh the best hot takes about hockey as well, so you also get some of the sarcasm and just some interesting controversial analytics backed tweets. So I love those ones, give them a follow if you’re remotely interested in that, hockey analytics, and if you listen to this show.
0:44:31.6 TW: Is the second one, is that also done in Tableau or the visualizations for the… Are both of them kind of all Tableau, Tableau Public?
0:44:38.9 JC: Yeah, I’m pretty sure that JFresh… He just posts screenshots of the cards, they’re like player cards or just visualizations, but I’m pretty sure they’re built in Tableau too, it looks Tableau-esque.
0:44:49.1 TW: Looks Tableau-ic. [laughter] Nice.
0:44:51.8 JC: Yeah. [laughter]
0:44:54.1 MH: Okay. And Tim, what about you? What’s your last call?
0:44:57.8 TW: Well, I’m gonna stay on brand and stack a couple together, so I’m gonna do the on-topic for this show, a couple of LinkedIn newsletters I found myself subscribing to more and more. Jodi didn’t mention that she has Data Privacy Highlights, so as a newsletter, which kind of has a good This Week In Privacy. From staying up-to-date on what’s going on, that’s a good one. Did I represent it fairly there Jodi, is that an accurate…
0:45:27.2 JD: Yeah, and I’m. So appreciative. Thank you. Yeah, we try and summarize every two weeks some of the big news items that are happening, so please subscribe. Check it out.
0:45:37.4 TW: Yeah. So, people who don’t wanna follow it all directly, that’s a really nice digest, and then I also… Stéphane Hamel, his hashtag No Consent, No tracking Coming from kind of an analyst perspective and a pretty absolutist take, but I kind of like his absolutist take, so his is kind of sporadic as to when he actually publishes but those are both ones that I appreciate.
0:46:04.1 JC: I was just gonna say, we briefly touched on Do Not Track, and I think he made the point that even as analytics professionals, we can’t agree on what tracking means, so how do you expect a consumer to figure that out?
0:46:15.5 TW: Yeah.
0:46:16.4 JC: Yeah, I thought that was…
0:46:16.8 JD: Bingo.
0:46:18.0 TW: Yeah. [laughter] And then my not related to this show, and this is now over a month old, but for anybody on the large language model kind of train, reading about it, I think the title of the article was kind of misleading, but Noam Chomsky kind of infamous linguist who’s got to be getting on up there at this point, co-wrote a piece in the New York Times called The False Promise of ChatGPT, and I don’t really love the title for it, I thought the piece itself is coming from a linguist background and explaining what you can and more importantly kind of cannot expect to get from a large language model, I thought was really, really well articulated. He kind of frames it in terms of how do we as humans actually take in information and learn, our brains aren’t doing large language modeling. So I just thought that was a super informative read as a way to think about large language models. And that was back in early March. What about you, Michael, what’s your last call?
0:47:23.9 MH: Well, I’m glad you asked and it’s keeping in the line with the topic of the show, actually just recently someone who I follow on Twitter is a journalist in this space, her name is Shoshana Wodinsky. She actually just started a newsletter, so that newsletter seemed to become the way we… It’s our morning paper now, so just subscribe to all of them. But anyways, she’s been writing and doing reporting and journalism on privacy and data for quite some time and really covers the space very well and I’m a big fan of her. Yeah, she just launched it about a month ago. So check that out and we’ll have that in the show notes. Okay, well, I’m sure you’ve been listening and you’ve got your own questions and your own thoughts, and we’d love to hear from you and you can reach out to us. The best way to do that is on the Measure Slack group or on LinkedIn or on our Twitter, so please do feel free to reach out. Jodi, do you keep a Twitter presence or anything like that, that people could find and follow you there?
0:48:25.8 JD: I do, it’s Red Clover Advisors, you can find it there. And then I’m very heavily involved over at LinkedIn, lots and lots of content, personal and on the Red Clover page.
0:48:38.3 MH: Awesome, all right, perfect. So then you can reach out to Jodi as well, Red Clover Advisors. And in all transparency, I’ve referred Jody to my clients. She does an awesome job. So if you need help with that, her company is actually quite good, I speak from first-hand experience, so that’s something I can just say without violating too many show proprietary things anyways. Let’s say also that no show would be complete if we didn’t talk to Josh Crowhurst and say thank you, Josh, for everything you do.
0:49:11.6 JC: You’re welcome.
0:49:13.1 MH: It’s not weird at all that you’re here right now when I say that and I’m happy to do it. So yeah, and thank you too, Tim.
0:49:19.5 TW: And Moe will be back.
0:49:21.3 MH: It’s right.
0:49:22.0 TW: Next episode. Yeah.
0:49:23.2 MH: We’re just working on the intro music, just the return music for Moe. Once we get that nailed down, we’ll get her… All right.
0:49:29.9 TW: Josh just found out it needs to be returned, return intro music.
0:49:34.9 JC: Oh God, I’m panicking.
0:49:36.3 MH: All right, once again, Jodi, thank you so much for being on the show. It has been an awesome discussion. Thank you so much.
0:49:43.1 JD: Thank you. I’m always grateful to be able to talk about privacy because as I said, privacy is cool nowadays, but privacy really matters, it’s important, it’s here to stay, it’s not going anywhere, and the intersection between privacy and marketing has never been more important. I appreciate that you all recognize that, and thanks for having me on again.
0:50:02.3 MH: That’s awesome, and I know I speak for both of my co-hosts today, Tim and Josh, when I say no matter where you are on your privacy journey, remember, keep analyzing.
0:50:14.9 Announcer: Thanks for listening. Let’s keep the conversation going with your comments, suggestions and questions on Twitter at @analyticshour, on the web at analyticshour.io, our LinkedIn group and the Measure chat Slack group. Music for the podcast by Josh Crowhurst.
0:50:32.9 Charles Barkley: So smart guys want to fit in, so they made up a term called analytics. Analytics don’t work.
0:50:39.5 Kamala Harris: I love Venn diagrams, it’s just something about those three circles and the analysis about where there is the intersection, right?
0:50:49.6 TW: We had an episode we recorded that my audio was completely not captured, so…
0:50:55.1 MH: Oh, right.
0:50:56.3 TW: I went through and re-recorded it, but I literally just listened to it and then just try to remember what I’d said.
0:51:00.8 JD: Oh, gosh.
0:51:03.0 MH: The first episodes of podcast we did I think we’re on Skype, so way back in the day.
0:51:08.3 TW: We did. Didn’t we do YouTube on air?
0:51:12.0 MH: I don’t think we ever did an episode on YouTube.
0:51:15.5 JD: Does Skype still exist?
0:51:18.2 MH: It’s rolled into whatever Teams and that kind of stuff now, I think. Yeah, probably maybe. I don’t know.
0:51:26.1 JD: That’s interesting to have a product so early, and they were really the leader and now it was totally overtaken, it’s just, I find that interesting.
0:51:35.9 TW: Well, they did get bought by Microsoft, so…
0:51:38.3 MH: Yeah. That does something to you.
0:51:41.2 JD: Yeah. They can’t destroy LinkedIn, that’s all I’m gonna say. And I know some people… We could have a whole episode on have they or haven’t they.
0:51:47.6 TW: I think they already have. [laughter]
0:51:50.2 MH: Oh, well, yeah, it’s a whole… So if you wanted to just punch your mailing address, if you felt comfortable with that, we’d love to send you a little thank you gift for coming on the show.
0:52:04.8 TW: But typing it in, just to let you know we’re gonna be… We’ll be sending that address out to a lot of different services just for them to kind of add you to direct mail.
0:52:14.5 MH: Yeah, we do share this with a lot of companies throughout California. No, I’m just kidding.
0:52:19.8 TW: I’m gonna go ahead and download this to my laptop, let me go and put this address in my unsecured laptop. We’re gonna leave it on the patio.
0:52:28.2 MH: Oh, man.
0:52:31.1 JD: It’s all good. [chuckle]
0:52:37.6 TW: Rock flag and build some trust.
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