When Google announced earlier this year that its Chrome browser would cease to support 3rd party cookies in 2022, it sparked immediate speculation about the impact this would have on digital publishers, ad tech platforms and marketers.

From the outset it was clear that audience targeting and attribution measurement would be impacted by this seismic change to the industry, and the initial response from many marketers was generally “let’s wait and see.” However, one consensus that everyone agreed on is that 1st party data will become significantly more valuable and actionable as this shift materializes.  

As an ad technology company with proprietary data-centric software, KORTX has been uniquely prepared to continually assess and respond to an evolving data landscape. With that in mind, we’ve compiled five strategies for marketers to begin positioning themselves for success in a cookie-less future.

Test and Learn with 3rd Party Data (while you still can)

The clock is ticking, and each passing day brings us closer to a digital landscape that will likely not have 3rd party data targeting. Now is the time to allocate additional budget to testing data segments in order to gather insights about which audiences are driving success. These insights can be applied to other targeting mechanisms that will continue after the cookies are long gone. 

KORTX Solution: Set up multiple line items in our Axon Audience Management Platform to test and measure 3rd party segments including demographic, behavioral, psychographic and purchase intent audiences.

Establish an Audience Discovery Process

Many attributes of a target audience can be identified and applied to future campaign strategies in lieu of 3rd party data, including device usage, day-part patterns, social media affiliation, geographic location along with many others. Combining these audience attributes helps paint a clear picture of the target audience from several dimensions. 

KORTX Solution: Leverage our unique Oracle Data Cloud integration to access audience insights for any custom keyword set based on user-intent across 15M+ websites. Get trends sourced from Oracle’s full online and offline database for visited domains, site topics, general interests, purchase behavior (Visa), TV viewership (ComScore), vehicle information (Edmunds) and other attributes of your target audience. 

Take Advantage of UTM Codes

The value of UTM codes goes beyond simply tracking the source of a site visitor or the performance of a campaign. Within the functionality of an audience management platform, UTM values can be used as events to construct 1st party data segments and elevate retargeting to a higher level of sophistication. 

KORTX Solution: Use UTM codes to identify and isolate valuable 2nd party audiences within the Axon platform, and translate them into 1st party data segments. Example use cases include verticals that typically buy niche contextual audiences from high-CPM trade journals and publications.  

Identify 1st Party Data Strengths & Weaknesses 

Not all 1st party data is created equal. Every site visitor offers value, however brands will want to fully understand where that value can be maximized. This may depend on the visitor’s source, the actions taken, campaign exposure or dozen of other variables, all of which can be ascertained using an audience management platform.

KORTX Solution: Create 1st party data segments based on more than two dozen site events captured by Axon’s JavaScript base code. Get instant audience size counts, and use boolean logic statements to stack site events for specific target audiences. Activate with KORTX and measure results to understand which site visitors drive performance in digital campaigns. 

Audit Your Site Tag Mapping 

Site architecture and content are likely subjected to constant updates, but the tags and pixels that enable retargeting, tracking and measurement could be misaligned. In order to get the most value out of 1st party data, a site’s tagging structure requires auditing to ensure that all relevant events are being accurately tracked and captured.  

KORTX Solution: Our partner solutions team has proven expertise in tag mapping and site auditing. Receive a custom tag mapping recommendation and Axon event recommendation to identify redundant tags and identify opportunities for updates.