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Interactive Marketing and its Impact on Consumer Privacy

Discuss about the Consumer’s Privacy Concern in Interactive Marketing Era.

In this online era, every business organizations are implementing all efficient strategies by using digital media to raise the profit margin of the organization. The primary motive of the organizational management is to make huge profit and set an example in the industry (Vivek et al. 2014). In order to achieve the desired position in the industry, every organization aims at identifying the preferences and requirements of its consumers. It leads them to trespass in the private world of their consumers. It has become very easy to track someone’s movement in this online era. According to some reports, Google knows a person better than his or her parents (Acquisti, Brandimarte and Loewenstein 2015). Every organization appoints some online specialists to track the movement of its consumers, so the organizational management can understand the requirements of the consumers and offer them the best product according to their requirements. However, it is considered as a criminal offense by Data Protection Directive (EU) (Tucker 2014). People often access their social networking sites to keep in touch with the world. This has provided a great opportunity to online business organizations to understand their preferences. In this scenario, the privacy of the consumers has become the highest concern. In this modern era, people depend more on online communication than physical communication. This has led them to face an awful consequence. The biggest question in this online age is how to protect the privacy from online tracker (Burtch, Ghose and Wattal 2015). The below mentioned article has discussed about how interactive marketing has put a significant impact on the private space of consumers.      

Interactive marketing refers to a marketing procedure in which business organizations concentrate on the behavior, attitude of the consumers (Campbell, Goldfarb and Tucker 2015). This type of marketing depends on the action of individual action. It is considered as one of the best way of marketing and it is ten times more effective than conventional way of marketing. In this modern age, almost every business organization has incorporated interactive marketing strategy to enhance the growth of the profit margin.  In order to observe the actions of the customers every business organization has appointed a team of skilled people who are expert in online tracking. It has become very easy to identify the requirement of the consumers by using social networking sites. To survive in the competition, every business organizations are trying to raise the profit margin, so they can beat their rival companies. To ensure the growth of the organizations, the organizational management of business organizations is using new media as a key tool to track the behavior and actions of their buyers. There are some examples of business organizations that have earned desired reputation in the industry by using online data of their customer. One of the exemplary examples of such organization is Fresh Direct Grocery. It is one of the largest online grocery shops that deal with 250,000 customers. This is one of the most preferred brands among the buyers. Before Fresh Direct has started its journey, there were some other grocery brands that have failed to achieve desired position in the industry due to lack of technology. Fresh Direct uses online to identify the requirement of its consumers (Freshdirect.com, 2017). It is important for every business organizations to maintain data base of their consumers. Information system of every organization plays a crucial role in the decision making process of any organization Data base works as a back bone of the organizations. The organizational management uses this data to implement required strategy into the organization. Many business organizations spend a huge amount to protect this information of their buyers. Big data analysis helps the business organizations to understand the market situation as well. By analyzing the data base the organizational management can understand what the new trends in the market are. This is highly beneficial for the organizational development. Organizational management can incorporate some new and efficient strategies to improve the product quality. However, this has led the organizations to take some unethical steps. The organizational management enters into the private space of their buyers to collect relevant information which can be helpful for the organizations to improve the quality of their performance or rectify the loopholes of the organizational structure. In this competitive era, it has become very important for every business organizations to provide flawless service to the consumers as the consumers have become very much conscious about the quality of the products (Csikósová, Antošová and ?ulková 2014). In recent time, people prefer quality products instead of branded product. In order to draw the attention of maximum number of buyer and match the expectation level of the buyers, every business organizations has concentrated on collecting personal information of their buyers. To put a strong foot print on the industry and satisfy buyers with quality service the organizational management of many business organizations are applying online data collection and interactive marketing method.

Use of Personal Data by Organizations and Breach of Data Protection Laws


However, this has lead the organizations to commit a criminal offence, as according to Data Protection Directive (EU) trespassing in some one’s private world or using his or her information without his or her permission is a criminal offence. This law has been adopted by European Union in 1995. As per this data protection law, using any information of any person without their permission is an offence. One who wants to use any information about any one must seek permission from than person. While personal data is being processed that person must be informed. Any business organization that wants to collect some personal data about any person must inform them about the process and purpose of the data collection and maintain a transparent relation with them.  Otherwise, it will be considered a punishable offence. It is not necessary to trespass into anyone’s private world without permission to achieve desired target in the industry (Fears et al. 2014). However, the business organizations are consecutively breaching these rules. Personal information of everyone is being used by the online business organization every now and then. The ratio of using personal data is increasing day by day. To enhance the profit margin, the business organizations are using personal data of the consumers every now and then. They are tracking every action of their consumers without their permission. A business organization deals with a large number of consumers. It possesses every information about individual buyer, so they can provide a flawless service to them (Stone and Woodcock 2014). This has raised a question on privacy protection of the consumers and users of new media.


According to some reports, people in these days are depending more on social networking sites than their face to face interaction (Feng and Xie 2014). They often access various social net working sites to maintain communication with their friends and relatives. The youth of the society spend most of the time in the social networking sites. They often visit various websites and purchase various products from their favorite online stores. Online shopping is another major gift of technology. People can buy products from their favorite international brand through online stores. It has provided a great opportunity to both buyer and business organizations. The business organization can promote their product to their international customers easily. The communication n structure of the society has changed in past few years. People of various ages are using new media to maintain healthy relation with their friends and relatives. New media has provided a wide range of services by which people can easily stay connected with rest of the world in their busy schedule. This has enhanced the popularity of the new media (Hennig-Thurau, Hofacker and Bloching 2013). However, there is a huge difference lies between online and offline interaction. In offline communication people do not need to expose their private data, but in online communication people are asked to share their private data. The online business organizations concentrate on these data of their consumers. It helps them to identify the preferences and requirements of the consumers. Thus, it provides a great opportunity to the buyers to promote their products and their brand name. Social networking sites have become an integral part of everyone, especially for the youth. They often access their social networking sites to interact and share relevant information with their friends, but unknowingly they are sharing their personal information with several business organizations (Taddicken 2014). It may lead them to face various risks in future. The emergence of new technologies has provided an opportunity to the business organizations to spread their network in all over the world and promote their products and services to every consumer from every corner of the world. Although, this is considered as one of the greatest gift of technology to both the business organizations and the buyers, it has influenced the privacy concern of the consumers (Koops 2014). Many people prefer to search for various products into their favorite online stores, but such practices have provided an opportunity to the business organizations to identify the requirement and preferences of the customers. This is highly beneficial for the business organizations to promote their products to the consumers. This is the main reason behind the pop up messages that one starts getting after visiting a particular site. This has heightened several questions about the privacy concern of the consumers. In this competitive era, organizational managements are introducing new strategies into their rulebook to earn huge profit by selling their products to a large number of customers (Schwaig et al. 2013). In this globalization era, business organizations have concentrated on the global market. The organizational managements of all the business organizations are trying to put a strong foot print in the international market and reach to the global consumers. In order to achieve the target, they are using new media. It is impossible for the organizational management to identify the requirements of international consumers without using social networking sites. However, in the process of understanding the preferences of the global customers, the organizational managements are breaching the privacy rule of each customer. Although, European Union has taken some initiatives to protect the privacy level of the customers, lack of legal framework has influenced such practices of the business organizations. According to the leaders of many business organizations, interactive marketing has become an integral part of organizational strategy. It is impossible to promote products and services in the global perspective without interactive marketing (Miltgen and Peyrat-Guillard 2014). In this age of information, people often hare their private data in the social networking sites. This has led them to face an unwelcomed consequence. In this busy world, it has become very tough to meet physically to anyone to maintain healthy relation with the friends and relatives and other people. This has led them to use social networking sites. Although social networking sites are very much effective to stay in touch with rest of the world and stay updated with the recent occurrences, this has some negative impacts on the society (Trainor et al. 2014). Privacy concern of the users is one of the main negative impacts of social media. The development of internet has provided an opportunity to the business organizations to identify their potential customers. It helps them to improve the quality of their service and products to draw the attention of large number of buyers. The business organizations are providing more effective and efficient service and products to achieve desired position in the industry. On the other hand, they are exploiting the privacy rule of their customers. According to some research, almost every business organizations are using interactive marketing as a tool to achieve desired target in the market (Jai and King 2016).

Online Communication and Privacy Concerns


To protect personal data from the online tracker government must take some efficient steps. It is the responsibility of the government to ensure the safety of every individual. The government must incorporate some rules to protect the personal data of the social networking sites users from the online trackers (Kumar et al. 2016). Although, government of many countries has taken some remarkable steps to maintain the safety level of the consumers, they need to concentrate on the activities of organizational management of business organization to prevent unethical practices. To prevent such unethical practices organizational management must also include some effective strategies into their rule book. It is important to make profit for every business organizations, but it must not generate any unlawful activity within the organization. The organizational management must seek permission of the consumers before using their personal information. The organizational management must provide sufficient information to their buyers about the process in which their personal data will be used (Malthouse et al. 2013). It is the responsibility of the organizational management to ensure the safety of the personal information of their consumers. Such practices will increase the brand image among the consumers which is highly beneficial for the growth of the organization. The organizational management must design their marketing strategy in such a manner that does not breach the privacy policy of the consumers. The organizational management must respect the privacy of every individual consumer to maintain a healthy relation with the customer (Zahay 2014). It is not enough to provide quality service or product to the consumers. The organizational management must consider the fact that it is important to maintain healthy relation with the buyers and act as responsible citizen while establishing the organizational strategy. It will help the organizations to earn long-term goal and fight against many future risks, such as- financial crisis, controversies and so on (Lynskey 2014).


As per the previous discussion, it can be stated that in this competitive era, it has become very important for every business organization to provide an improved and flawless service to its consumers. Interactive marketing provides an opportunity to the business organizations to promote their products to every individual buyer by tracking their behavior, attitude and actions. The organizational management of many business organizations is using this method to identify the requirement and preference of their consumers. It helps them to provide a flawless service to their consumers. In this online era, where every people of the society, especially the youth are spending most of the time in social networking sites, it has become very easy for the business organizations to track every movement of the consumers. However, in order to become most preferred brand among the consumers, almost every business organization is breaching the privacy rule of the consumers.  They are continuously tracking every movement of their buyers by using latest techniques. This has raised a question about the privacy of the personal data of consumers. According to Data Protection Directive of European Union, ever business organization must inform every buyer before using their personal data. However, the business organizations do not put much effort to seek permission from the buyer. Although, it is important for every organization to maintain data of the consumers to improve the service quality and identify the requirement of their consumers, the organizational management must introduce some effective strategy to maintain the privacy level of the consumers. They must maintain a transparent relation with the buyer and provide relevant information about the process. Government also plays a crucial role in maintain privacy level of consumer data. It is their responsibility to maintain safety level of every buyer. Government must take some legal steps to maintain online security of the consumers. It will be beneficial to maintain healthy and peaceful environment in the society.

Conclusion

Reference:

Acquisti, A., Brandimarte, L. and Loewenstein, G., 2015. Privacy and human behavior in the age of information. Science, 347(6221), pp.509-514.

Burtch, G., Ghose, A. and Wattal, S., 2015. The hidden cost of accommodating crowdfunder privacy preferences: a randomized field experiment. Management Science, 61(5), pp.949-962.

Campbell, J., Goldfarb, A. and Tucker, C., 2015. Privacy regulation and market structure. Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, 24(1), pp.47-73.

Csikósová, A., Antošová, M. and ?ulková, K., 2014. Strategy in direct and interactive marketing and integrated marketing communications. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 116, pp.1615-1619.

Fears, R., Brand, H., Frackowiak, R., Pastoret, P.P., Souhami, R. and Thompson, B., 2014. Data protection regulation and the promotion of health research: getting the balance right. QJM, 107(1), pp.3-5.

Feng, Y. and Xie, W., 2014. Teens’ concern for privacy when using social networking sites: An analysis of socialization agents and relationships with privacy-protecting behaviors. Computers in Human Behavior, 33, pp.153-162.

Freshdirect.com. (2017). Freshdirect.com.

Hennig-Thurau, T., Hofacker, C.F. and Bloching, B., 2013. Marketing the pinball way: understanding how social media change the generation of value for consumers and companies. Journal of Interactive Marketing, 27(4), pp.237-241.

Jai, T.M.C. and King, N.J., 2016. Privacy versus reward: Do loyalty programs increase consumers' willingness to share personal information with third-party advertisers and data brokers?. Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, 28, pp.296-303.

Koops, B.J., 2014. The trouble with European data protection law. International Data Privacy Law, 4(4), pp.250-261.

Kumar, A., Bezawada, R., Rishika, R., Janakiraman, R. and Kannan, P.K., 2016. From social to sale: The effects of firm-generated content in social media on customer behavior. Journal of Marketing, 80(1), pp.7-25.

Lynskey, O., 2014. Deconstructing data protection: The ‘added-value’of a right to data protection in the EU legal order. International and Comparative Law Quarterly, 63(03), pp.569-597.

Malthouse, E.C., Haenlein, M., Skiera, B., Wege, E. and Zhang, M., 2013. Managing customer relationships in the social media era: introducing the social CRM house. Journal of Interactive Marketing, 27(4), pp.270-280.

Miltgen, C.L. and Peyrat-Guillard, D., 2014. Cultural and generational influences on privacy concerns: a qualitative study in seven European countries. European Journal of Information Systems, 23(2), pp.103-125.

Schwaig, K.S., Segars, A.H., Grover, V. and Fiedler, K.D., 2013. A model of consumers’ perceptions of the invasion of information privacy. Information & Management, 50(1), pp.1-12.

Stone, M.D. and Woodcock, N.D., 2014. Interactive, direct and digital marketing: A future that depends on better use of business intelligence. Journal of Research in Interactive Marketing, 8(1), pp.4-17.

Taddicken, M., 2014. The ‘Privacy Paradox’in the social web: The impact of privacy concerns, individual characteristics, and the perceived social relevance on different forms of self?disclosure. Journal of Computer?Mediated Communication, 19(2), pp.248-273.

Trainor, K.J., Andzulis, J.M., Rapp, A. and Agnihotri, R., 2014. Social media technology usage and customer relationship performance: A capabilities-based examination of social CRM. Journal of Business Research, 67(6), pp.1201-1208.

Tucker, C.E., 2014. Social networks, personalized advertising, and privacy controls. Journal of Marketing Research, 51(5), pp.546-562.

Vivek, S.D., Beatty, S.E., Dalela, V. and Morgan, R.M., 2014. A generalized multidimensional scale for measuring customer engagement. Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice, 22(4), pp.401-420.

Zahay, D., 2014. Special Issue on The Past, Present and Future of Interactive Marketing. Journal of Research in Interactive Marketing, 8(1).

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