It’s been over two years since Google announced the deprecation of third-party cookies, which is slated to take effect in the second half of 2023. When that happens, the cookie, for all intents and purposes, will no longer have a place in advertising and marketers will need to implement alternative solutions to maintain similar levels of segmentation and reach as they have had in the past.
In anticipation of this monumental shift, we sat down with IAB Canada member, Matt Schrag, Senior Manager of Product Marketing at Quantcast to get their take on what to expect as the cookieless future unfolds.
IABC: We’ve had a lot of discussion at the IAB about Cookie Independence, in your view, why is it important to be thinking and acting on this change? What’s the urgency?
Matt: Third-party cookies are already depreciated or off by default in browsers including Safari, Firefox, and Brave. Safari, for example, which is the default browser on iOS, leaves over 50% of the addressable market without a way to successfully attribute and measure campaigns. That’s happening right now. Planning for a completely cookieless tomorrow means starting today. It’s imperative for marketers to position themselves for success before cookies are completely eliminated and they’re left scrambling for ways to reach, measure and segment audiences with specificity.
IABC: When you talk to clients, what are some best practices you share to help them get prepared?
Matt: As always, brands should continue to focus on the big picture and make sure they understand the fundamentals of what’s important for their business, including who their audience is.
For marketers, a successful cookieless solution should incorporate multiple signals like first-party data, cohorts, and contextual data – to name a few. Simply using one of these approaches will not be successful and will leave them vulnerable to inevitable changes in the adtech ecosystem. Also, by combining multiple data signals, it’s possible to produce richer and more actionable insights.
Quantcast’s cookieless solution allows advertisers to be nimble and adapt as signals change over time. This flexible, multi-signal approach is helping our advertising partners gain a competitive advantage and realize great results, even today.
Secondly, advertisers can begin testing and comparing campaign activations in environments with and without cookies today to get a better understanding of their potential reach and impressions. It’s already possible to view performance and spend metrics in environments with and without cookies to more holistically understand how campaigns perform while also having the ability to optimize as you go.
Lastly, whether you’re an advertiser, publisher or tech platform; do your research. After you identify your audience, you’ll need partners to help you activate. There are plenty of options, but many either don’t address the full potential market or lack proper measurement tools. At Quantcast, we’ve been invested in campaign planning, attribution and measurement for browsers without third-party cookies for quite some time and are well-positioned to ensure our clients continue to succeed in the cookieless future.
IABC: Looking ahead, what becomes the future state of marketing and advertising as it relates to measurement?
Matt: Privacy and choice will continue to be important for consumers, and measurement will simply need to adapt.
Overall, advertising success without third-party cookies will depend on a myriad of factors which will look different from one brand to the next. Marketers should use this current time to do ongoing testing in an effort to better understand what success means for them and how they can better measure and optimize for that success.
A key feature of Quantcast’s cookieless solution is cookieless conversion reporting, which gives advertisers the ability to measure and justify investments in cookieless environments, and gives publishers the ability to quantify the large and growing portion of customers whose browsing is not supported by third-party cookies today.
With over 50% of today’s consumers not being addressable via the third-party cookie, savvy brands, agencies, publishers, and technology companies should jump at the chance now to reach more than half of the internet. Embracing cookieless opportunities today is key to remaining relevant and competitive tomorrow.
Quantcast is an Elite Sponsor to IAB Canada and continues to contribute to our thought leadership and solutions-based approach to addressing Cookie Independence. Join the conversation and reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.