For the last few years, data professionals have been playing whack-a-mole with the changes to how browsers handle first and third-party cookies. But now, it’s finally time to say goodbye to third-party cookies once and for all. And while some search engines like Google and Safari won’t completely eliminate third-party cookie tracking until 2022, you need to start preparing now in order to set yourself up for long-term success.

Luckily, we’re here to help! We have an entire masterclass series dedicated to helping you not only survive third-party cookie loss, but also thrive in the cookie-less world. We will be recapping our first session in the series in this blog post with 3 key things you need to be doing today to succeed later.

Keep reading to see the key takeaways from the first session in our masterclass series or watch the on-demand session here.

Speakers include: Jake Spencer, Director of Product Marketing and Travis Cameron, Regional VP of Strategic Partnerships at Tealium.

Data Deprecation – aka what it’s all about (8:35)

Before we dive into your course of action, let’s take a step back and talk about how we got here. What it has really come down to is the combination of three major changes: third-party cookie loss, regulatory changes like the GDPR, and browser changes like heightened controls on data collection. 

Forrester has coined the term ‘data deprecation’ to explain what has led to this big finale. Its defined as the restriction of tracking and access to consumer data due to regulatory, browser, walled-garden, or consumer actions. 

So while third-party cookies are the main focus here, there are other changes coming into play that will affect your entire data ecosystem. That’s why it’s crucial to start thinking about how to resolve it at an organizational level.

The Way Forward (14:31)

You really have three options here. 

The first is to give up and go back to the way marketing used to be by relying on fuzzy metrics and delivering very generic experiences. 

The second option is to continue to play whack-a-mole and constantly change your data strategy, resulting in a costly cycle.

The third option, and the one we believe is best, is to switch to a first-party data strategy.

By switching to a first-party data strategy now, you’re able to build a strong foundation and set up effective customer data practices for your entire business. There are so many perks to switching to a first-party data strategy as well – aside from navigating those three changes. First-party data comes directly from your customers which helps you sleep easier knowing it’s not only more accurate, but also trusted. This means as more data privacy changes come, you’ll feel more stable. 

What You Should Be Doing Today (19:30)

When it comes to actually preparing, these are the three main areas you should be focusing on to make an immediate impact.

  1. Build a Durable First-Party Data Core (21:16)

Like we said, this really is the way forward and will be the foundation for the next two areas we’ll discuss. It all starts with data collection – not just how you are collecting that data, but also the quality of the data you’re collecting.

Poor data hygiene can result in a domino effect and cause your targeting, personalization, attribution and analytics, and even just your basic customer experiences to suffer. As we said before, with a first-party data strategy you know your data has been given with consent and is entirely accurate because it’s directly from your customers. 

With these insights and trust, you can deliver stronger customer experiences. And while they may not be as super duper personalized like before, they’ll still be personalized enough to resonate with your customer. After all, overly personalized experiences were part of what got us here after customers began feeling creeped out and violated by what we knew about them.

  1. Adapt Media and Analytics Strategies (31:35)

As a result of these majors changes the way you’re reporting and what you’re reporting on will look different. That said, you need to communicate early and often with your organization, especially your executive team, so the difference in your dashboards won’t come as a shock. 

Additionally, you’ll want to future proof your performance measurements and simplify the way you look at those metrics over time. One recommendation we’ve consistently seen from publishers is to only have a maximum of only 7 different conversion reports. This limitation comes from that fact that you will no longer be able to or need to report on everything that happens on a digital property anymore. As a result, this helps to simplify reporting and focus your internal teams on what matters most and what is most impactful.

  1. Become a Digital Destination (28:00)

This really comes down to providing value to your customers to create long lasting relationships. With these relationships, you’ll have the ability to identify returning customers and better tailor their experiences. 

So how do you do that? One way is to be completely transparent with your data usage policy. In your cookie pop-up, disclose how and why you’re collecting their data as well as how it will benefit them. This is something you can start doing today to foster trust and gather more first-party data to fuel your strategy and technologies going forward.

We know this can be overwhelming so we’re here to help you throughout this journey! Check out the rest of our masterclass series to learn more about how you can better prepare for third-party cookie loss or watch the on-demand session of this masterclass here.

Ready to start taking action but not sure exactly where to start? We can help with that too! Get a personalized demo to see first-hand how Tealium can help you easily transition to a first-party data strategy today!

Post Author

Audrey Lewis
Audrey is a Demand Generation Manager at Tealium

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