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Social Logins Suck

OK, confession time: How many of you are tired of remembering usernames and passwords and log in to various accounts with your social logins instead of creating new ones? I’ll come clean: I’ve done it. It’s just easier that way. If I only have to remember my Twitter login, and then I can use that login on any number of other sites, haven’t I just made my life easier?

Yes…but if you’re the marketer, no.

Social logins make life easier for the consumer, but they only pretend to make life easier for the marketer. Here’s why:

1. You don’t own the data: If you allow users to log in to your site or platform via Facebook or Twitter, who owns that user’s data? Not you. At best you’re sharing it. Yes, you’re less likely to get the signup if you don’t offer a social login option, so there is a downside.

Janrain claims offering social login improves registration conversion rates by at least 50%.But on the other hand, you own that subscriber if you require them to register directly. Facebook has thought this through, and they have rules around how you can use data; scroll down to #6 “Data Collection and Use”.

(Thanks to Dave Hendricks at LiveIntent for bringing this clause to my attention.)

2. You’re watering down your brand: There is a great story about the inherent issues with social logins, including the dilution of the brand when a logo doesn’t appear alone but rather alongside other brands.

3. Then there’s the creepy factor. Just this week I saw someone comment on Facebook about being on a totally different website and being marketed to based on something they’d seen or done on another website.

And if you’re breaking up with social logins, you might enjoy reading about a business that broke up with Facebook altogether, to spend their marketing dollars elsewhere…and more profitably.

Scott Hardigree
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