Media and marketing professionals warn ‘now is not the time to slow down’ following Google’s Cookiepocalypse delay

Cookies won’t be wiped from Chrome until 2024, according to a new announcement from Google’s Privacy Sandbox. The news brings good luck to many marketers, developers and publishers, who will now have more time to innovate and adapt by devoting resources to developing alternative privacy-preserving advertising solutions. Even so, the industry is still feeling the heat.

Google Chrome’s elimination of third-party cookies – the technology used to track user behavior across the web for the purpose of targeted advertising – has been officially pushed back to 2024.

This move will not only give Google’s Privacy Sandbox team more time to perfect new privacy-centric APIs, but will also give developers and advertisers a longer track to establish their own effective privacy-preserving technologies to the future of advertising and information brokerage.

Marketers say now is not the time to focus on innovative privacy technologies / Adobe Stock

So far, media and advertising players are happy with the decision, but warn of the risk of stalling at this time.

“The future of [digital] Identity is about the ability to leverage direct sources, with consumer consent, and to be smarter about signals that aren’t tied to a consumer’s identity,” said Iván Markman, Chief Commercial Officer of Yahoo. , at The Drum. He says postponing cookie deprecation will give the industry “more time to test and learn”.

Even so, he suggests innovating earlier and faster will yield better results for advertisers. “Adapting today’s solutions brings greater reach across the entire inventory, with or without credentials.”

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Some experts understand that advertisers are excited to learn they have more time to adapt to a cookie-free future, but are more cynical about the real benefits of this decision. “While the industry is rejoicing right now, this continued purgatory is actually bad for the market,” says Shiv Gupta, managing partner at U of Digital, a digital marketing education firm. “It will create more uncertainty, which will lead to more confusion, which will lead to even more identification solutions with no clear end in sight.”

In fact, Gupta predicts that the extension will only allow advertisers to continue mining individual user-level data in order to make a profit. “It’s an addressability and privacy purgatory that doesn’t allow the advertising industry to move forward in other more meaningful areas. It breathes life into scammers looking to make money out of a volatile situation instead of creating valuable marketing tools.

While he’s cynical that the delayed cookiepocolypse will ignite significant fire under the backs of most advertisers, he nonetheless urges them to scale — and scale quickly. “Marketers and smart publishers should look to diversify their approach to identity and work with partners who can deliver cookie-free results now instead of [focusing on] ambitious solutions. They need to act quickly and make flexible decisions that don’t bind them to big commitments, given the prolonged uncertainty.”

Others echo the advice that this doesn’t become a time to fall asleep at the wheel. “Google’s pursuit of third-party cookies through 2024 shouldn’t stop the market moving forward in taking steps to future-proof its business and enter the market with privacy-enhancing solutions,” says Jessica Simpson, senior vice president of global solutions consulting and verified technology at Publicis Media.

Adding to the urgency of the matter, a number of privacy developments are occurring outside of the cookie debate. “More than 25% of the world’s population is subject to privacy regulations – and that’s expected to triple by 2023,” Simpson says. “In the United States, California is refreshing [its privacy legislation] California consumer protection law, and work is underway to issue a [federal] bipartisan privacy bill. Additionally, she points out, Apple’s privacy-focused changes are already disrupting the way business is conducted in the mobile, desktop and connected TV ecosystems.

“Now is the time to get ahead of the curve by testing not only cookie alternatives, but also true AI-based targeting, value-driven data acquisition, and value-driven measurement solutions. customer value.” Whether advertisers, developers and publishers like it or not, Simpson says, “reform is coming.”

It should also be noted that this is not the first time that Google has changed previously established plans for cookies. Last year, the tech giant delayed cookie obsolescence to 2023 – back from an earlier deadline of 2022. “The goalposts moved twice. The goal posts will move again – guaranteed,” predicts Gupta. “If Google is forced to divest its adtech business before the deadline [amid ongoing antitrust efforts aimed at the tech giant]maybe the deadline will be moved earlier.”

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