The ROI of purpose-based consent and preference management

Chances are your organization is collecting more data this year than last. Learn how an effective consent management system can help you make the most of it

Ashlea Cartee, Senior Product Marketing Manager, OneTrust Consent and Preferences
March 10, 2023


Data is the foundation of digital transformation and innovation in the digital-first economy. Responsible data management unlocks many possibilities for businesses, and often it’s essential to capture data directly from consumers, relying on their consent and preferences. As massive digital and privacy-centric shifts change the way organization engage and retain customers, businesses are evolving their consent strategy beyond a cookie banner to an end-to-end preference management program that connects the dots between consent, preferences and durable identifiers such as email addresses, collected across a range of user journeys. 


Purpose-based consent management is a process companies use to manage consent and preferences according to data purposes. This enables companies to follow privacy compliance obligations and improve omni-channel experiences by asking individuals for consent and their preferences that align with the purpose for which the company will use their data (analytics, email marketing, advertising).  


What makes consent management essential today? 

Now more than ever, people are sharing their data online – for online shopping, banking, bill pay, social media, browsing websites for information, and many more reasons.  


Headlines announcing yet another data breach have caught the attention of consumers. They now insist on more control over their digital footprint. This includes updating personal information and selecting preferences for how companies use their data, what they communicate, how often, and through which communication channels. For companies, consent management typically starts with maintaining compliance with evolving data usage requirements within privacy laws – wherever customers purchase their products and services. But it’s not just about following the law.  


Data is at the heart of every organization. Data-driven innovation helps foster new products, processes, methods, and markets. However, as businesses become more data-driven than ever before, organizations are faced with data sprawl as companies collect and store data across multiple systems, causing disarray within teams striving to put data to use based on consent. Enterprise businesses need a solution that fuels responsible data acquisition and activation — by connecting the dots between consent, preferences, and durable identifiers such as email addresses, collected across a range of user journeys. Thus, implementing an end-to-end consent management solution creates a centralized repository of that consented data that can be shared across their business and broader ecosystem to be able to activate it responsibly to grow the business toward tangible value.  


What is the ROI of consent management? 

Build trust with your customers 

Companies that apply consent management across their digital properties build trust with customers as they demonstrate compliance with privacy regulations. But compliance isn’t the end of the trust journey – in fact, it’s just the beginning. Consented data unlocks the power of data, allowing your organization to:  


  1. Clearly communicate the purpose and extent of data collection 
  2. Use this data to deliver personalized experiences to these customers 
  3. Give them the opportunity to modify their preferences around their data as they please 


These customers will be more likely to make purchases, stay loyal to the brand, and share their experience with family and friends, who may become customers themselves.  


Unlock personalized experiences with first-party data 

Consent and preference management allows companies to enhance personalization across websites, mobile apps, and connected TV platforms, contributing to a positive customer experience that is useful and engaging. By collecting data for the purpose of personalization and targeted advertising (and communicating this to your customers), organizations can develop first-party data strategies via consented data to build value-added personalized experiences for your customers.  


  • Studying app vs. website engagement metrics 
  • Creating new ideas for customer experiences based on user preferences  
  • Having different experiences for different segments of customers so that everyone gets maximum value from interacting with your brand  
  • Using first-party data to drive R&D for new solutions that resonate with your customers 


These are all ways to unlock engaging personalized experiences through purpose-driven consent and preference management.  


Minimize risk of non-compliance 

Consent management helps companies mitigate risk through the active collection of updates to consent and preferences. Companies can detect and respond to contact detail changes or adjust permission settings according to new or updated government regulations, such as the US opt-out requirements in five new state privacy laws. With a consent and preferences solution in place, your organization can communicate these changes in data practices downstream to your tech stack as well, ensuring policies across your organization remain compliant.  

There are several behind-the-scenes benefits companies achieve, such as the ability to: 

  • Log and track consent collection to guide compliance with privacy regulations like the GDPR, LGPD, CCPA, and others. 
  • Comply with continuously evolving data privacy laws — in the location where the company is based and wherever they interact with customers. 
  • Streamline operations by establishing a central repository of consent records accessible by business units across the company. 


Achieving ROI on consent and preference management 

By deploying a consent and preference management system, companies can capture customer consent and a range of preferences that help build trust. Companies use this data to drive personalization, segmentation, and higher-performing campaigns while maintaining compliance with privacy laws and regulations. 


According to Deloitte, customers are 80% more likely to purchase products and services when companies personalize their experience by using their name and respecting their product, payment method, and communication channel preferences. On the flip side, a study by PWC found that one in three consumers (32%) say it only takes one bad experience to walk away from a brand they love. One way companies retain more contacts is by deploying opt-down functionality. Customers can reduce communication frequency and channels, such as email, and specify their interest in certain products or services. By offering these options, companies find that their opt-out and unsubscribe rates decline, which helps drive revenue growth. 


In a recent report from the Data & Marketing Association (DMA), survey respondents using a consent and preference management system reported that their opt-in rates increased by 39%, compared to 20% for those without the system. Those with a system in place also reported 25% lower unsubscribe rates, compared to 12% without a system.  


Companies that install consent and preference management systems also achieve success in other ways, including:  


  • Cost reduction – With the privacy regulatory environment changing from day to day and the volume of customer data collected increasing exponentially, developing a consent and preferences solution in-house is simply not sustainable from a cost perspective. Also, giving customers the option to choose their preferred communication channel often increases paperless communications and drives efficiency improvements that lower costs. Companies can easily share user consent downstream to third-party vendors with minimal cost. 
  • Technology governance – Expanding the number of automation and distribution tools creates data silos, making it challenging to get clarity on what customers have consented to and their preferences. Centralizing and connecting consent, preferences and durable identifiers through one central platform helps ensure the use of trusted data across multiple tools and technology platforms.  
  • Risk mitigation – Complying with continuously evolving data protection and privacy regulations helps companies avoid expensive penalties and damage to brand reputation. In effect, these systems help bolster a company’s security posture without compromising its ability to deliver a seamless customer experience. 


Available customer data, engagement, revenue, and conversion are rising for about half of the surveyed businesses. Simultaneously, survey participants reported that customer complaints are decreasing overall, and those opting out are increasing slightly. The average ROI is also significant, at just over $46 for every $1.21 spent.  


How can OneTrust drive ROI? 

Companies committed to keeping trust and transparency at the center of all consumer interactions rely on OneTrust consent and preference management solutions to capture, centralize, govern, and sync consent, preferences, and first-party data across multiple tools and platforms.   


OneTrust Consent and Preferences allows companies to practice responsible data acquisition and activation. Build privacy-first interactions across websites, mobile apps, and connected TV platforms while creating engaging, personalized experiences.  


What this means for your organization 

Consumer demand for privacy in the digital economy makes it essential for companies to put systems into place to manage consent and preferences and comply with expanding privacy regulations. Incorporating best practices for ensuring data accuracy, strengthening data management, and achieving compliance will help bolster consent and preference management, which builds customer trust. 


Get started with OneTrust Consent and Preferences by requesting a demo today. 

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