The marketers' quest for data-driven strategies
Ashish Sinha, Managing Director, APAC & MEA, EpsilonEpsilon
Data-driven brands will have an edge over competition, are in a great position to drive personalized customer experienc...
ad-tech

The marketers' quest for data-driven strategies

Data-driven brands will have an edge over competition, are in a great position to drive personalized customer experienc...
  • Many adtech companies and publishers are concerned about Google's decision to remove support for third-party cookies on Google Chrome.
  • While marketers have been struggling to get to a single unified view of their customers across online and offline interactions, this is not a time to despair but a time for brands to focus on building their most valuable asset – first-party data, writes Ashish Sinha, Managing Director, APAC & MEA, Epsilon.
Ever since Google announced its intent to remove support for third-party cookies on Google Chrome, many adtech companies and publishers are seeing this as a season of uncertainty. It’s inevitable that third-party identifiers – such as cookies and mobile ad IDs -will fundamentally change the marketing ecosystem—for better or worse. But what do marketers think of these changes? And, more importantly, how are they preparing?

Knowing and understanding their customers has always been a holy grail for marketers. With third-party cookies deprecating, it is now making the already ‘bad’ situation worse. Marketers have already been struggling to get to a single unified view of their customers across online and offline interactions. This is not a time to despair but a time for brands to focus on building their most valuable asset – first-party data.

Unlocking the potential of first-party data
First-party data has always been at the heart of marketers’ efforts to deliver meaningful, personalized interactions. It’s increasingly important to construct a single, clear, actionable view of customers across online and offline touchpoints, while also acknowledging and understanding the barriers that stop brands from bringing this to life. Without third-party cookies, it makes the problem even more challenging. But brands are forging right ahead with their quest for identity. Third-party cookie deprecation has forced many marketers to relook and revisit their first-party data strategies and many are discovering that they are already sitting on a goldmine of data – data that will help them create the end-to-end view of their customers and their journey.

A comprehensive identity strategy leverages a mix of first-, second- and third-party data. When a person’s unique attributes attach to their accurately resolved identity, it creates rich portrait of a person, and brands are in a position to drive personalization. Google’s announcement to phase out third-party cookies, in the name of privacy, has left marketers who haven’t invested enough in a robust identity strategy, reeling. But third-party cookies have always been flawed. They are not people-based and may not accurately identify people over time. So, what will marketers do once they’re missing a peg in that three-legged stool?

The third-party cookie deprecation move has also, rightly, put the limelight back on first-party data. Brands could ultimately emerge from this transition with a stronger view of their customers than they’ve ever had before. Brands that are able to build out and better utilize their first-party data asset are realizing there’s more potential than they understood.

Building a comprehensive CDP strategy
Customer Data Platforms (CDPs) are appealing because they promise to help marketers see a single view of their customers that can power omnichannel personalization. The CDP market is projected to grow to over $10 billion by 2025 and according to Gartner, CDP technology companies have received more than $1.8 billion in venture capital funding.

The CDP market is constantly evolving. Effective CDP offerings need an identity management and resolution component, and quality data for advanced personalization. You need that strong reference data and data hygiene to build each profile from the most accurate data set. If marketers or CDP technology providers don’t have that in their arsenal today, they should be figuring out how to get it if they want to support complex enterprise brands.

The future of brands lies in deeper understanding of customers and their needs. While third-party cookie deprecation throws a spanner in the works, it’s actually a great opportunity for marketers and brands to create the right setup to understand customers on their own terms. And brands that are data-driven will naturally have an edge over competition and are in a great position to drive contextual and personalized customer experiences.