YouGov Launches ‘YouGov Safe’, an Opt-In Data Marketplace Where Consumers Can Sell Their Data

Niamh Carroll 21 April, 2021 

YouGov has launched ‘YouGov Safe’, a marketplace that will allow consumers to share their first-party data with marketers in what they say will be a GDPR and CCPA compliant way. YouGov Safe say they will prioritise the consent of users and they will be able to access a dashboard to opt-in to what data they want to share. 

The data analytics and market research company will allow users to connect their third-party data to the new YouGov Safe platform. Consumers will be able to connect their data from different sources, such as their streaming accounts and web-browsers, and sell it directly to YouGov. For example, a user will be able to choose to sell their Netflix usage data or their browsing history. 



On the marketer side of the platform, the tool will allow marketers to see data from across different platforms, such as streaming services, to compare and contrast habits. 

Hamish Brocklebank, head of YouGov Safe, says the platform will soon expand to allow user to share their banking, health, gaming and social media data. ”Basically the idea is that any account where the company holds data about you, we can potentially connect to YouGov Safe, and we are in the process of connecting a variety of new data sources,” he said. 

In the future, new capabilities will be introduced, and marketers will be able to target fans of a particular influencer based on their social media data. YouGov has a media-planning tool called ‘YouGov Cube’, which provides access to the user profiles on the platform. The new data gathered through YouGov Safe will be added to the tool so media planners will be able to find information about specific groups and demographics to inform their purchase. 

YouGov Safe will have what Brocklebank calls a “hybrid model”: the data shared by YouGov Safe users, or ‘panellists’ as they are called, is married with attitudinal data gathered from surveys conducted on the website. 

“We can actually start to close the loop in terms of attribution, when it comes to marketing and actual sales,” he says. For example, with YouGov Safe, marketers can see that users bought a particular product, and then they can find out what motivated them to buy that particular product through questions. This capability will allow marketers to understand their return on investment based on verified purchases. 

As well as being able to get more visibility on particular cohorts through YouGov Safe brands, media owners and agencies will be able to target and even contact individual members directly.

For users, they can passively earn through YouGov Safe. Each piece of data shared generates points, which can then be exchanged for monetary rewards. 

Hamish Brocklebank emphasises that although users can passively earn on YouGov Safe, their consent to share their data is active. “In each case, each individual member has to agree to another specific request, and they know what company they’re sharing it with,” he says. 

As YouGov are paying users for the data, it’s fair to question whether the financial incentives to will result in particular demographics being attracted to YouGov Safe. However, Brocklebank says that the YouGov panel is so large that it enables them to accurately weight different demographics when running things like ad testing. 

He added that users are not just incentivised by the financial rewards and YouGov Safe is building a media recommendation system, which will be an interesting test of the extent to which people are willing to actively share data in order to receive more relevant media and advertising. “The idea being is when you connect your four different streaming accounts that you might have, it will recommend you content based on your profile demographic, as opposed to what you’ve watched,” he said.



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