March 30, 2018

1st, 2nd, & 3rd Party Data: Do You Know the Difference?

There are three types of data in the marketing world. Do you know the difference?

Data knowledge is crucial when mapping out your marketing campaign. Data gives you insight into your customers, prospects, and potential partners. Learn more about the three types of data to plan your next marketing campaign with confidence and successful results.

Help your future marketing campaign by reading up on the three types of consumer data.

1st party data is appropriately named, as it is our first stop on our journey to your perfect marketing campaign.

1st Party Data

1st party data is data about a business’s customer base gathered by the business itself.

The business decides what kind of data is gathered, the manner in which the data is collected, and the verification level of the data. Since the business itself is collecting the data, the business is the sole owner of the customer data it collects. 1st party data can be collected by a business by tracking in-store purchases, website platforms, apps, mail-in material, surveys, and more. 1st party data is generally comprised of your customers’ demographics, purchasing trends, and actions/interests. 1st party data gives you in-depth, detailed knowledge about your customer base.

1st party data is often overlooked during marketing campaigns. Business and company owners generally look ahead, wanting to constantly add new customers to increase profit. This can be a fatal long term mistake.

Has anyone ever recommended to you that you should touch home base every so often to reconnect with yourself before moving forward?

1st party data is like your home base in the marketing world, because it is a collection of data on people who already like your product or service. Having a customer database means that you have a collection of people of different backgrounds, life experiences, and interests that have a common denominator- they like what you are selling.

Start your marketing campaign with something you should know- your customers. Find out commonalities for each of your customer segments. Why did your customers choose your business? What makes your customers buy from you again? Split your known customers into categories that you can successfully target when reaching out to other potential prospects.

Are more young people buying your product than older people? Is that because your product is more appealing to a younger crowd- or is it because your ads look fun and cool? What if the real reason you have younger customers is because your business advertisements are sent to a college town. Could you open up a new market segment by being more inclusive or do you want to maximize what seems to be working?

There’s a lot of questions to think about.

The good thing about first party data is that you can analyze the data extensively without much pressure. Once you’ve felt like you have mastered your 1st party data, you are ready to move on and learn about your 2nd party and 3rd party data acquisition options to improve your marketing campaign.

When you’ve already utilized 1st and 3rd party data, 2nd party data is a great way to supplement marketing and advertising efforts.

2nd Party Data

2nd party data is a business’s 1st party data sold to another entity.

Traditionally, 2nd party data was difficult to obtain. However, in recent years businesses have become increasingly tech savvy, and B2B data transfer is less burdensome. Now unique data sharing partnerships are common between businesses for marketing and advertising.

Businesses may sell their 1st party data that they have collected or even offer a trade for another business’s 1st party data. Decisions to sell or trade 1st party data should be targeted to reap a mutual benefit between non-competing companies.

“Second-party data sharing is when a retailer, brand, publisher, or marketer gains transparent access to the website audience data of and other retailer, brand, publisher, or marketer for marketing purposes – to their mutual benefit.” -Forrester Research, The Era of Second-Party Data is Here, September 2016

Examples of a mutually benefitting 2nd party data trade:

1. A hotel chain and an airport car rental dealer exchange their 1st party data in the form of a contact list of email travelers

2. A baby clothing company buys a prenatal vitamin company’s 1st party data list.

3. A wedding venue sells a list of emails of married couples to a cruise line. The cruise line uses this list for an anniversary cruise advertisement.

4. A yoga pants company wants to expand to include upscale clientele. The yoga pants company buys 1st party data from a fancy gym to test whether an upper-end gym member will buy a new pant design.

The biggest issue with 2nd party data is privacy. The business with 1st party data may be legally obligated to inform each one of its customers that their information is being sold to the business buying 2nd party data. Another big problem with 2nd party data is that you don’t own the data that you are acquiring. You have no control over how the 1st party data that you obtained is collected and processed. Even if the company says one thing, there is no guarantee that their information is correct.

That is why it is generally good to rely on a professional data broker that guarantees quality 3rd party data and keep 2nd party data trades and purchases as a supplement to a successful marketing campaign.

Do you need information on new people that have never interacted with your brand? That's 3rd party data.

3rd Party Data

3rd party data is consumer data gathered from a business or entity that doesn’t have a direct relationship with those consumers.

Not all information is the same. If you bought an email list that is 10 years old, good luck successfully sending one email advertisement using that list. Do you still use your high school or college email address? Probably not. Outdated data is bad data.

It is best to buy 3rd party data from professional data providers, who specialize in gathering quality, up-to-date data from verified sources. You want the most “bang for your buck” when financing your marketing campaign. This generally means going with a professional data provider that can offer you quality data at wholesale prices.

Good data selling professionals have been in the business for a while and will work with you to find 3rd party data that mimics the demographic and psychographic information that you have gathered from your 1st party data.

If you have had trouble creating customer profiles from your first party data, don’t worry. Some data-selling professionals can help you with that. ListGIANT can look at your current customer information and research your competitors to determine your “Perfect 10” customers in order to market to proper customer segments.

Whereas 1st party data is your home base and 2nd party data is your supplement, 3rd party data is the entire field of your marketing campaign.

Go into your 3rd party data list with a game plan and good data. Good third party data means that most of the people on that list would be interested in what you are selling. The better the data, the better the response rate (provided that the advertisement and product/service is good).

3rd party data gives you the opportunity to connect with new potential consumers and create targeted campaigns to new, untapped audiences. Additionally, through aggregation, 3rd party data can be used to fill in any missing information in your 1st party data.


A great perk of 3rd party data is that some large providers will prioritize long-term, return business. They are willing to offer “try before you buy” offers to prove that their data is top-notch. ListGIANT is currently offering 500 free sales leads to new customers with no risk and no obligated commitment on your end. ListGIANT’s data is also conveniently stored on a List Portal that allows you to download your lists with demographic and psychographic filtering options. Please give us a call at (805) 267-1575 for List Portal help, or schedule a walk through.

Now that you know the difference between 1st, 2nd, and 3rd party data, it’s time for you to make a difference with your new marketing campaign.



What is U.S Consumer Email Database?
A consumer email database contains lists of personal email addresses. These email addresses are sourced every month through online forms, subscriptions, purchases, sweepstakes offers, and lucky draws. The list includes the full name of the consumers, their mailing addresses, and physical mailing addresses. These lists are presented in excel files for a proper assortment of information. You can easily save and utilize them on your desktop after purchase.
Where can I find and buy consumer email addresses?
You can find different online platforms that deal with consumer email addresses. The easiest way to discover them is through targeted google searches. You will find companies such as LIST GIANT that provide list portals for online purchase at very affordable prices. For further inquiries, you can always call their contact number cited on the website.
How important are consumer email addresses for my business?
Consumer email addresses are essential in generating leads. It is very likely for someone to buy your product if they’ve bought a similar product in the recent past. You can lose great sales opportunities by not remaining in contact with a previous client. These email addresses also help to promote new products and mark your brand identity. You will also have direct access to consumer feedback and satisfaction scores.
What demographic selects are available on the U.S Consumer Email Database?
There are several parameters and segments which divide the U.S. Consumer Email Database. These segments include different demographics such as:

Age Range
Income Range
Marital Status
Presence of Credit Card
Pet Owner
Shopping Preferences
Phone Number

All these sectors have diverse needs and are generated each month. To receive the latest up-to-date lists, you can subscribe for a monthly service.

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