Data Studio is the go-to for any marketer creating dashboards. But what if you’ve created a dashboard (in this case, we’ll call it an Ad Data Report) that you want to share with a large group of people? If those individuals work in your organization, no problem–there’s a setting for that. But if those folks work outside of your organization, you only have two options:
- Open the report to the public for anyone to view, or
- Add everyone’s emails individually into the Data Studio report with email controls
For security purposes, option #2 is preferable. However, there can be times where you don’t have the time or need to enter hundreds of emails manually. Instead, you can turn to a little workaround to create password protected data studio reports.
This article will cover the simplest mode of setting up a password protected Data Studio report; however, there are a few other examples out there which we’ll cover in future articles.
Step #1 – Add A Password Parameter to Your Report
The first step to create a password protected Data Studio report is to edit the data source and add a parameter to your report that we’ll call “Password”. This parameter will sit within a data control, which will influence a few other fields we’ll create.
Here, we’ll leave the data type as “Text” and the default value as blank.
Step #2 – Create a Custom Field
The next step is to create a custom field, which we’ll call “include”. When creating this field, you can use a custom formula to set the value of “include” to 1. Ultimately, we’ll then create a setting for the report that will only show data if value is set to 1. And the way we’ll set the value, is by taking the value of “Password” and running an CASE / WHEN formula (see image below) to set the value when the password is equal to one you’ve set.
The reason CASE/WHEN is better than IF STATEMENTS is that it allows for multiple passwords to be used, which ensures greater protection if you need to share with different groups of people.
CASE WHEN (Password = “thepassword”) THEN 1 ELSE 0 END
Step #3 – Create a data control input box
After we have our ‘include’ formula set, the next step is to create an input box that allows users to enter the password, and trigger our data control. To do this, you can click on the “add a control” drop down, and then look for the input box.
The next step is to change the control field to the “Password” parameter:
After that, we can move on to the final step: creating filters.
Step #4 – Create report filters
Report filters allow you to show or exclude data depending on different parameters. In this case, we want to set a filter that will only show data when “include” is equal to 1, or if the password is entered correctly.
Head to the Resource tab, then click “Manage filters”. From there, we’ll click “Add a filter”, where we can call it “Show data”.
These are the settings you should use: Include, parameter should be “include” and Equal to (=) 1.
From there, it’s time to add this filter to our data charts (or groups of data).
Step #5 – Add filter to report
To systematize the process, the best move here is to create groups of charts by highlighting a few charts, right clicking, and selecting “Group”. From there, you can highlight the group, head to the Group Properties section on the right, where you’ll see Group Filters near the bottom. Click Add a filter, and find the Show Data filter we just created!
Now you’ll see the data removed from the report, like this:
And when you set the password to the correct value, the data will appear!
And just like that, you’ve created a password protected report that can scale with any kind of sharing needs you may have.
This post was inspired by the @TiltonData, which is why we wanted to bring it into the world of advertising data for all marketers to know.
🔓Have you ever wanted to create a password for your #GoogleDataStudio report, maybe even customized to show different data to different users? Check out this approach that uses a combination of parameters and report filters. #DataStudio https://t.co/ocHI8JuJry
— Laura Tilton 📚📊 (@tiltondata) August 9, 2022