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Back to Basics: What is First Party Data?

This is the first of our “Back to Basics” series, where we will attempt to break down the jargon and demystify some of the many aspects of an effective data strategy. As anyone in the ad tech industry knows, there are as many acronyms and special terms as you can count. Our goal is to cut through the clutter and clarify what exactly all these words mean. Today we are focusing on First Party Data. What is First Party Data, and why do you want to capture or use it? 

For anyone new to the data scene, first of all – Welcome to the Party! If there is one thing we love to talk about at Lotame, it’s big data. After all, data is everywhere, and when activated properly, it can help businesses launch ROI-driven advertising campaigns.

However, what even is data? How do you collect data? And, more importantly, what can you actually do with data? Before we can answer any of these questions, we must first unpack the three different data types available to businesses, which are: 1st party data, 2nd party data, and 3rd party data.

Let’s discuss the first type of data: First Party Data.

What is First Party Data?

Simply put, 1st party data is YOUR audience data. This can include:

  • Behavioral data (i.e. actions and interests users demonstrate on your website)
  • Data you have in your CRM (i.e. information users share with you)
  • Subscription data  (i.e. for anyone who has subscribers, such as newspapers or magazines)
  • Social data (i.e. data pulled people who interact with your brand on social media)
  • Cross-platform data (i.e. information gleaned from mobile web or apps)

Unlike other data types, first party data is available to you at no cost and is also commonly viewed as the most valuable because of its quality. After all, this is information directly taken from or gathered about your actual users/customers.

So how do you collect First Party Data?

Collecting first party data online can be done by placing a pixel on your website, which captures information about your audience by tracking their behaviors on your website property. There are also a variety of analytics tools that will give you this information. You can then group these behaviors and other valuable data pieces into categories or audiences, and then mix and match your segments for targeted advertising campaigns or content personalization.

Easy enough, right? Well this is really just the beginning, because data from your digital properties is only one piece of the puzzle. What about offline data? Or mobile data?  First party data goes beyond digital Web.

Collecting, organizing and activating First Party Data

In order to paint a complete picture of your audience segments, you must also collect and manage data from ALL of your media properties, and while there are many analytic tools you can use to cobble your data together, this can quickly become a cumbersome process when  trying to analyze hundreds of data points on thousands of leads and customers in your database.

DMP Can Help Ease your First Party Data Collection Process

A DMP, like Lotame, not only collects first party data from cross-platform channels but also empowers publishers, marketers and businesses to activate their data in a meaningful manner.

In plain terms, Lotame’s DMP gathers all of your data in one place and then allows you to gather actionable insights from your data. Your first party data can then be used to tighten up your audience targeting, optimize your campaigns, and increase the ROI of your ad spend.

As our “Back to Basics” series continues, we will explore all types of data, so check back for updates. Or, if you have questions and want to find out more about either Lotame’s data management platform or our data exchange, contact us. We love to talk about data!