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What: Block chain technology offers brands the opportunity to collect customer data and incentivize their behavior directly and transparently.
Why it matters: Customers can protect their personal data and monetize it, entering into a one-on-one relationship with brands through a technology called “smart contracts”. Smart contracts allow users to enter into data sharing agreements with brands that are “securely stored on the block chain along with the detailed terms and conditions.”

Block chain technology is poised to revolutionize how brands gather customers’ data and incentivize their behavior. The digital computer code that is best known for being used to create the crypto-currency known as “Bitcoin,” also allows for “smart contracts,” whereby two entities (i.e. a brand and a customer) can enter into agreements that are transparent, verifiable, secure and direct.

So what do “smart contracts” mean for brands?

Smart contracts backed by block chain technology have the potential to shatter the traditional paradigm whereby brands purchase customer data from third parties like Facebook, or loyalty programs that rely on consumer subscriptions but don’t provide a lot of purchasing behavior or product preferences information.

Enter Killi, a consumer application available on iOS or Android. Killi lets consumers sell their personal data directly to brands and receive compensation every time marketers choose to buy it.

Using block chain technology, Killi collects users’ locations and their purchasing data which is stored on the user’s device. Brands can then purchase the data with the permission of the app users.

A personal data locker is controlled by the user and secured by the block chain. This allows you to take back control of your personal data from those who are selling it today without your consent.

When users authorize brands to access their data, Killi stores the payment on the Killi app until users choose to redeem it.

“Killi acts as a personal data locker that is controlled by the user and secured by the block chain. Killi allows you to take back control of your personal data from those who are selling it today without your consent,” Killi tells consumers on its website.

The Killi website is a bit vague on how the technology actually works, but “the offering of being able to monetize your own personal info does sound intriguing,” said Jay Gumbiner, vice president for Latin America at IDC.

“We could even imagine some consumers being worth much more than others based on their purchasing habits, socioeconomic placement, educational level, etc.”

We could even imagine some consumers being worth much more than others based on their purchasing habits, socioeconomic placement, educational level, etc.

“In terms of using block chain for maintaining the integrity of that data and being able to easily track who has been able to access the information, it seems like blockchain could be a great use case for managing data such as this,” Gumbiner noted.

The Killi app relies on block chain technology to create what is known as a “smart contract” between the app users and brands.

Smart contracts allow users to enter into data sharing agreements with brands that are “securely stored on the block chain along with the detailed terms and conditions,” according to Yves Benchimol, CEO at the French startup Occi.

Thanks to these smart contracts and encryption via the block chain, consumers can “easily request an exhaustive list of all retailers/brands they have shared data with, and in which conditions, in compliance with GDPR,” Benchimol said.

Occi is working on its own products for retailers that use block chain and smart contract technology to reward customers while providing a rich set of data about their shopping behavior to brands.

Smart contracts with consumers provide a channel for consumers to share their information with brands, while providing brands new possibilities for influencing consumers’ behavior.

Brands can “create a campaign rewarding a shopper for visiting a store and define the amount they’re willing to reward a shopper along with a total budget, which will be locked in a smart contract,” Benchimol said.

Retailers have access to well-established sources of data on consumers’ preferences and behaviors from a wide range of sources, but new laws such as GDPR create barriers to using that data without consent.

Block chain and smart contract technology “bring forth a new way to solicit data sharing from shoppers, that is more transparent and fair because it directly rewards them,” Benchimol said.

What: The Local Media Consortium (LMC), a partnership of 65 local media companies that represent 1,650 news outlets, has partnered with Lotame as its data management platform (DMP).
Why it matters: The Lotame DMP will enable publishers of all sizes to collectively create segments and make them available programmatically via LMC.

AppNexus_Lotame_96x96_logo_400x400The Local Media Consortium (LMC), a partnership of 65 local media companies that represent 1,650 news outlets, wants to help its members benefit from the higher CPMs that come from adding in publisher data while solving for the scale problem.

For that purpose, LMC is bringing on Lotame as its data management platform (DMP) through a partnership . The Lotame DMP will enable publishers of all sizes to collectively create segments and make them available programmatically via LMC.

In addition, larger publishers in the LMC can participate in the collective DMP designed to attract programmatic buyers and bring on Lotame as an individual DMP, using terms negotiated by the LMC to get the best deal for all its members.

“When you go down to the smaller markets, you might not have enough ‘M’ on the CPM to make it worthwhile,” said Rusty Coats, executive director for the LMC. The LMC, however, is meant to give local publishers visibility among major brands and political buyers – and provides enough collective scale to make those deals viable.

With this partnership,  LMC hopes to include most of its members (which range from large publishers like McClatchy, Digital First Media and EW Scripps to Dorado Magazine publisher Ballantine Communications and Florida weekly publisher The Observer Group) in time to tap into political campaign budgets.Republican-focused agency Targeted Victory, one of Lotame’s bigger clients, will be able to “map to the audiences in each of the districts where it’s hotly contested, and enrich the data they have” with LMC publisher data.

“Because there was no way for buyers to buy local media at scale, many of our local digital partners were left out on the last election cycle,” Coats said. “We see great opportunity in the 2016 election for them.”

A third party will help smaller publishers to organize their data and bring it on to the larger data set.Having a DMP offers bonus benefits to many of the local media publishers, who also run print operations.Publishers who want to grow subscription bases can target nonsubscribers and market directly to them.

The LMC exchange that will use Lotame’s DMP data has been growing since its launch last year. At the time, about 250 million impressions a month flowed through the exchange. Now, it’s averaging 1 billion impressions a month.That increase is mainly from more partners joining and putting more supply in the exchange.

Adding a DMP to the LMC exchange is just one way the consortium is expanding. As more impressions flow through the LMC’s exchange, the organization is slowly scaling up.

 

What: Digital-data startup Krux Digital Inc. raised $35 million in funding.
Why it matters: Krux is a DMP that collects and analyzes information about people’s habits and interests.

kruxThe fundraising values Krux at about $150 million, according to the WSJ.  Krux is a DMP that collects and analyzes information about people’s habits and interests. Accoding to the company, they have repositories of information on tens of millions of consumers’ online and real world behaviors.

Accel Partners and IDG Ventures ar part of the existing investors of the Series B round and  SAP Ventures, Time Warner, Temasek and Taizo Son are new investors.

“Yet the information increasingly is controlled by a handful of large companies, including Google Inc., Facebook Inc., Adobe Systems Inc. and Oracle Corp. Each of them is acquiring personal-data companies as they assemble a suite of tools for retailers to better predict who is likely to buy from a new Prada clothing line, for example.” said the WSJ.

Tom Chavez, Krux co-founder and chief executive, said the difference with Google or Facebook is that they don´t sell advertising, so they are an “independent personal data repository”.

Krux said it plans to use the fresh investment funds for more salespeople and to bulk up resources that help customers get more value out of the service.

Source: WSJ
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