Cookie crumble: what Google’s privacy policy means for digital marketers

Google takes on the cybercriminal web. — © AFP THOMAS COEX

With the increased focus on digital privacy, many marketers need to find new ways to monitor their audience. A new survey from Unsupervised reveals that more than 1 in 4 marketers with less than two years of experience aren’t sure about other data tracking options they have besides cookies.

In contrast, the study found that marketers with more than six years of experience are 35% more confident in their ability to track audiences without cookies than newer marketers. The experience gap is therefore quite considerable.

As for why this matters, with the upcoming elimination of third-party cookies (an initiative led by Google), those involved in marketing need to develop new digital marketing strategies and discover new ways to monitor their audience.

The survey looks at the future of digital marketing (where the views of some 800 marketers were solicited, with people at different stages of their careers).

The decline of cookies is a topic taken seriously by marketers. Here, 60% of marketers think it’s time to reevaluate marketing strategies due to the phasing out of cookies. Google’s phasing out of cookies was of most concern.

Cookies are tiny files stored on computers when Internet users browse the Internet. These snippets of data allow advertisers to track and target people as they surf. Google announced that it will not create alternative tracking IDs with similar cross-site tracking capabilities after phasing out third-party cookies.

According to Google: “Users are demanding greater privacy, including transparency, choice, and control over how their data is used, and it’s clear the web ecosystem must evolve to meet these growing demands.”

As a result, digital advertisers will need to find new ways to attribute conversions, cap ad placement frequency, and retarget site visitors. In terms of industry reaction, it has to do with experience. Marketers with less than two years of experience are more than four times more likely than those with more than three years of experience to not know how to track their audience without cookies.

In terms of the most likely solution, people-based marketing is the preferred cookie replacement option for marketers at all levels (as mentioned by 48% of respondents).

People-centric marketing takes a more personal approach to marketing, allowing brands to personalize messages and deliver campaigns at optimal times. This includes finding the right channels to advertise and capitalize on spend.

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