The past decade has witnessed a remarkable surge in the influence and capabilities of online platforms, matched by rapid advances in the use of online consumer data to track and target individuals for digital marketing. These parallel trends are poised to usher in a fundamental change in how commercial ecosystems are managed online, by consolidating customer relationship management into centralised platforms controlled and managed by large and incumbent technology companies.
This paper considers how the practice of customer relationship management has developed over the last decade and notes widespread dissatisfaction with surveillance advertising and online business models based on data exploitation. It suggests that a network-based ecosystem is a better alternative to centralised platform logic for relationship management. It suggests that the rapid pace of technological and regulatory development in the fields of data sharing, digital marketing, and identity management provide a rare opportunity to fundamentally shift the premises of customer relationship management.
To do so, this paper suggests five design principles for developing the infrastructure that would enable human-centric and network- based ecosystems for customer relationship management and digital marketing.
It calls for a broad dialogue on refining these principles and advancing a shared understanding of how to shape better digital ecosystems for the data economy of tomorrow. MyData Global is dedicated to facilitating that dialogue, and suggests these design principles as a starting point for constructive feedback and iteration. We hope to bring together pioneers and innovators to begin exploring how we can put these ideas into practice.
Writing this paper was supported by the Omidyar Network.