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Cookieless Targeting: What the Future Holds For Marketers

Cookieless targeting is part of a broad field of methods by which advertisers target specific audiences for their products or services without the use of cookies. As more and more platforms disallow and disincentivize third-party cookies (cookie deprecation), cookieless targeting is gaining momentum.

This makes sense. Tech companies wisely acceded to the demands of an engaged online public concerned about their privacy as it relates to cookies and data collection. But they still need to cultivate audiences for their advertisers and the agencies who work on their behalf.

Leavened does not do cookieless targeting. Instead, we use a marketing mix model (MMM) powered by a suite of tools that delivers cookieless measurements, insights, and optimizations with speed, value, and transparency. Leavened measures the effectiveness of different channels to assist agencies and clients in their own cookieless targeting efforts.

In short, we’ve worked within — and helped shape — the cookieless world before it became a thing.

MMM solutions are more important than ever as we continue deeper into the cookieless world. And with Leavened, agencies can run millions of models in just a few hours, helping marketers expedite their insights and interact directly with their marketing efforts and the audience that reacts to them.

Challenges of Cookieless Targeting

For agencies and their marketing clients, there are challenges to cookieless targeting and the burgeoning cookieless world.

Insights may result from the increased use of machine learning, authenticated solutions (getting explicit user consent to use their data), and anonymous targeting, where no explicit consent is acquired from the user. In the latter case, multichannel contextual targeting or aggregated targeting can assist advertisers in targeting audiences anonymously.

The main challenge, however, is learning how to effectively measure cookieless data feeds and correlate that data to the behavior of actual consumers. Without personally identifiable information (PII), can we really know about our target audience?

The answer is: yes, absolutely. We can still measure content consumption, for example, thereby learning a tremendous amount about what consumers are doing online and what content is driving their actions. As many experts have noted, this data can provide us with new or additional information that complements what we’ve already learned.

The key is to know where to look. Digital marketing and digital advertising in the cookieless future may look superficially different. But the engine that drives the insights is essentially the same.

In other words, we’ll still want to trace the customer journey — and track users — across web pages. We may not have access to a user ID, but the information we do have is actionable, and the data we can cull from it is robust.

Cookies will still be around even in the so-called cookieless world. Domain owners, apps, websites, CRMs, and ad tech companies, among many others, will still use first-party data to inform their own marketing and data efforts.

Cookieless targeting represents the latest chapter in an ongoing dialogue between agencies, advertisers, tech platforms, and their audiences. Those audiences are savvy about brand safety and the uses of their personal data, whether they surf with Safari, Google Chrome, or other platforms.

Leavened can help you make heads or tails of it all. Get in touch with us today to learn more about our real-time targeting methods and the cost savings that can be enjoyed while using the Leavened platform.