Daily Insights

We Scored Brands’ Data/Targeting Efforts

By: Evan Bakker | Nov 09, 2018

In the face of data breaches, increased regulations, and heightened consumer concerns about privacy, brands must rethink their entire approach to data collection, notification, and personalization or risk losing consumer trust and attention.

Gartner L2’s Data & Targeting report assesses the sophistication of brands’ data capture and targeted marketing efforts, plotting the results on a two-dimensional grid. To see how individual brands performed, check out our new interactive, which can be customized by sector, brand, and primary headquarters location.

Here’s how the scores shook out:


This year’s scores are based on brand site data collection, privacy communication, site personalization features and account customization, along with efforts to target customers through email, social media and display advertising. Based on their aggregate performance, brands were categorized as Leaders, Data Miners, Streamliners or Laggards.

Leaders (13%) leverage their customer databases to serve highly targeted messages across their sites and digital marketing channels. Brands in this category, such as H&M and Ikea, collect segmentation data through third parties and their own sites while also communicating how the data is used. Leader brands cut across sectors and tend to either be based in Europe or have an international presence, forcing them to adapt more quickly to new privacy legislation.

Data Miners (24%) collect data at all points of the customer journey, from email newsletter sign-up to account customization. These brands, however, often fail to translate this into full-fledged targeting campaigns. Brands in the beauty and travel sectors, which offer specialized products or services, represent nearly two-thirds of data miners.

Streamliners (34%) rely on third-party companies to cull data in lieu of using site collection. They demonstrate savviness on platforms like Facebook and other publisher sites with personalized advertisements. Retail sectors (including department stores, big box, and specialty retail) account for 80% of streamliners, likely due to their large ad budgets and intense competition for conversions.

Laggards (29%) fail to optimize their data collection or targeting efforts. These brands collect insufficient data on their sites and also forgo using third-party retargeters, limiting their marketing options. Therefore, they invest less heavily in areas like programmatic advertising and retargeted emails. This quadrant accounts for 55% of activewear brands and over a third of fashion brands.

See more: targeting