Katherine Bialczyk, senior product marketing manager, performance and identity, MiQ
Since Google announced their latest delay in deprecating third-party tracking cookies, the new ‘deadline’ is now two and a half years later than originally planned – H2 of 2024. Google also shared additional timelines around Privacy Sandbox, feeling that more time is needed to test and launch its features fully:
- Testing scaled out to millions of users globally in August 2022
- The Privacy Sandbox APIs will be launched and generally available in Chrome by Q3 2023, so the new timeline gives additional time for testing
This doesn’t come as a surprise to online advertising. Cookieless measurement is one of the most challenging aspects facing advertisers as we move toward a privacy-forward future. This is because the programmatic industry is heavily fragmented – consider all of the media channels, formats, ad exchanges, ad servers, demand vs. supply side platforms, and the different data, measurement, and analytics available within walled gardens versus on the open web. Today, teams of savvy data scientists analyze these supply combinations using a common identifier – aka tracking cookies – to rank them based on the expected return on investment. Connecting these solutions is really, really hard even with 3rd party tracking cookies.
Since the cookie isn’t going to crumble just yet, advertisers might stay the course with existing, cookie-based campaign strategies. But, there’s more to cookieless than Google. Only about 30 – 45% of internet browsing is estimated to be cookie-based.
If you find that truth shocking, let’s break it down. Safari and Firefox have blocked third-party cookies for the past three years. Chrome, with roughly 50% share of browsing activity globally, has been the only major player to hold out. Cookie availability continues to be squeezed and even more so with stricter consumer privacy regulations appearing throughout the globe. People who use ad blocking tools or just go incognito are reported to be anywhere from 7% on mobile to about 40% on desktop – all other devices lie somewhere in-between. If you’ve been following along with your calculator, that means cookie-based strategies over-index to just 30% of the open web!
Only relying on cookie-based strategies is like scratching the surface of programmatic’s scale. There are massive opportunities to plan, target, and optimize programmatic campaigns without cookies. Regardless of cookie availability and any further changes to the deadline by Google, our focus at MiQ continues to be on rapidly transitioning to a privacy-first programmatic approach – because not only is it better for consumers, but it’s also more performant. As a result, our campaign delivery globally is on-track to be 85% cookieless by the end of 2023. We leverage data from our myriad partners to create MiQ Identity Spine, which connects multiple data signals into a single profile, so brands can achieve connected and accurate measurement across channels. We have 150+ data connections, 8B bids analyzed daily, 300+ data experts, and manage billions of IDs–simplified into one connected solution for better connected marketing.
What are we seeing at MiQ?
- Proprietary, multi-ID, MiQ Identity Spine that has increased unique reach by 65 % vs cookie-based strategies
- A fully customizable Cookieless Toolkit for brands to tap into cookieless audience solutions, like SimilarWeb and Experian, resulting in significant increases in brand metrics like CTR, VTR, and reach.
- Rollout of cookieless optimization features such as Inventory Control SPO that uses advanced contextual campaign signals to optimize performance with a 91% improvement rate
At MiQ, campaigns adopting our multi-ID Identity Spine and Cookieless Toolkit have proven that privacy-centric programmatic can and does provide more scale, more intelligence, and greater overall performance – and so we will continue to invest in these strategies for our clients. Although the cookie deprecation timeline is changing yet again, it is even more important to take this (extra) time to rewrite the rules of digital advertising and grow existing alternatives that are right for your brand, while also prioritizing consumer privacy and choice.
Want to hear more about cookieless?
- Check out our Q&A with MiQ’s product lead for identity, Georgie Haig, for her take on Google’s cookie delay announcement
- Learn why cookieless measurement demands a multi-solution approach
- Looking to future-proof your campaigns without compromising performance? Get in touch.