Data and Audience
Collecting data is just the first step—how you use that data will determine just how useful it will be.
Data collection, from audience modeling to conversion tracking and beyond, is key to a successful business, and the tools available to collect that data continue to shift and evolve. With more data available than ever before, sifting through the near-endless information is no simple task. Identifying what’s important to use and knowing what to do with that information to turn it into actionable information will give you an edge over the rest of the competition.
The data collection world is about to be turned on its head as third-party tracking tools will undergo massive shifts in the next two years. Not only do you need to future-proof your business, but you also need to make sure your current business model is leveraging the data you have to make smarter decisions with the right online and offline information to build insights that improve your marketing as a whole.
Google is Phasing Out Cookies in 2024
Among the recent changes, this could very well be the single largest shift in data collection since it became a core part of the business world. While currently slated for 2023, Google announced it’s pushing back the phasing out of cookies to the back half of 2024.
It’s been nearly 30 years since third-party data allowed marketers and advertisers to track customer behavior online through cookies. While cookies have been an invaluable tool for people looking to learn more about consumers in order to sell a product, privacy concerns, and other changes have taken the center stage over the past few years in particular.
A 2019 poll conducted by Pew Research Center found that 81% of American adults say the risks of data collection outweigh the potential benefits. This study clearly showed that the vast majority of Americans were in favor of higher levels of data security, as well as scaled-back data collection. Some browsers like Safari and Firefox have blocked third-party ad network cookies since 2013, and the General Data Protection Regulation enacted by the European Union in 2016 further pushed toward online privacy in Europe. Since then, the California Consumer Privacy Act in January 2020 continued its evolution.
Beyond regulatory changes, the April 2021 Apple update changed its tracking policy for iOS devices, allowing users to “opt-out” of app tracking. This means that iPhone, iPad, and Apple TVs require people to specifically allow apps to track their activity across multiple apps for data collection and ad targeting. An estimated 25% of people opt-in to app tracking—up about 14% since the change according to Flurry Analytics, which is used in over 1 million mobile applications.
These governmental and company-scale changes have already had a major impact on how advertising can be expected to reach consumers and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. While a shift in the landscape, taking the initiative to come up with creative and thoughtful strategies ahead of your competition will put you in a stronger position once cookies are fully transitioned away from. Here’s how this shift could affect your data-gathering processes.
The Value of an Omnichannel Marketing Strategy
The data available to you isn’t limited to what you find online, and you shouldn’t limit your advertising to those spaces either. When planning your advertising strategy, you need to carefully consider the channels available to you, and how you need to allocate your resources to target each one. These considerations need to include radio streaming, digital streaming, video streaming, programmatic ads, search, social media, and more.
When building our your marketing strategy, take into account what you’re saying in each channel, how often you’re saying it, and when you’re getting your message out there. Each of these areas provides different facets of information you can act on. Understanding the information at your fingertips will help you build a mixed media plan that puts your message in front of the right people when they need to see it.
While some channels are more popular than others, the right mix of targets will not only increase the range and scope of your messaging impact, you protect yourself from dramatic shifts in an individual industry’s area severely damaging your bottom line. Not only that, oversaturating a single market can get overwhelming for your potential customers—you want to spread that impact out to reach the right types of users at just the right moment
Use First-Party Data to Your Advantage
By tracking when a customer enters their personal information or makes a purchase through your website, you can generate informed inferences about your audience. Data scientists can turn this raw data into insights that optimize your advertising strategies. However, this data won’t simply generate itself. You need to carefully consider what types of variables you want to capitalize on, including addresses, household income, age, and more in order to capture a more complete image of your customers. Amsive is an expert in this field and can help you craft a strategy that best captures the data and delivers the insights you need to amplify your business growth.
Take Proactive Steps to Avoid Getting Caught Off-Guard
Losing access to cookies in the next couple of years is going to have a massive impact on marketing and advertising strategies that fail to adapt to the new landscape. Solely relying on this third-party data will no longer be an option very shortly, and coming up with a plan to shift towards alternate means of gathering data is a necessary step for every business. There’s no need to guess what those methods are—industry leaders know exactly what steps to take, and can guide you there.
Not only will accessing this data take refined skill and experience, but collecting first-party data will likely fall under increased scrutiny—these changes are being enacted in large part due to increased concerns over online privacy, so any data gathered from individuals online needs to be carefully collected. At Amsive, our in-house data scientists and statisticians both understand how to use the tools already available to us and how to seamlessly integrate new tools as they become available to keep you at the cutting edge of the marketing and advertising spaces, as well as maintain rigid security protocols to keep the information collected secure.
Having the right data and being able to interpret it in a way you can act on is core to a data-centric, omnichannel strategy. Learn more about what you can do to stay ahead of Google’s ever-shifting search algorithm, or reach out to us today to learn more about how you can achieve more for your business.