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Advertising in a Post-Cookie World

Advertising in a Post-Cookie World

The cookie has become a fundamental part of the digital ecosystem, powering everything from personalized content, to ecommerce, to the delivery of more relevant and useful advertising.

Quite a feat for a piece of technology created way back in the early days of the internet in 1994, when Netscape was the browser of choice, and the IAB didn’t even exist!

But as the ecosystem has matured rapidly over the years, digital publishers have increasingly relied on a broad number of integrated third parties in order to deliver richer personalized experiences to users on multiple screens and devices. Supporting these integrations with traditional cookie-based ‘state management’ has created its own set of challenges to buyers, sellers and users alike.

For buyers, it has posed limitations to personalization across devices, and a truly holistic view of campaign performance. For sellers, the proliferation of cookies has led in some cases to increased latency, and concerns of data leakage. Just as importantly, in terms of the digital user experience, it has resulted in slowed loading times, and lacked a single optimal point of data transparency and control, despite laudable and successful efforts by the NAI, and the widely used DAA’s Ad Choices program, of which IAB is a participatory association.

With all of this in mind, IAB’s Future of the Cookie Working Group, which I co-chair, recently released a whitepaper on the subject, in association with IAB’s Mobile Marketing Center of Excellence, entitled ‘Privacy and Tracking in a Post-Cookie World’.

The paper sets out to explain the current challenges and consider possible solutions, and includes a useful, comprehensive chart explaining how each prospective solution meets the specific needs of buyers, sellers and users alike.

Today at the IAB Annual Leadership Meeting in Palm Desert, CA I was proud and delighted to be presented with a Service Excellence Award for my efforts in this area.

However, in the spirit of collaboration on which IAB and other associations like it are based, I would like to dedicate this to the entire Future of the Cookie Working Group. This paper is the result of an incredible amount of work by all working group members (partners and competitors alike), and in particular my Co-Chairs.

Furthermore, we should also remember that this is merely the first step to a better ‘state management’ solution, which benefits the entire ecosystem. There is still much work to do. Our great industry has witnessed incredible innovation with cookies as a foundation. In order to fuel the next wave of innovation, it’s vital that we as an industry come together to develop standards in state management.

I welcome your feedback, and look forward to discussing the issues raised in the paper with you further, hopefully in person over the coming days at the IAB Leadership Summit.