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What Google’s Latest Announcement Means for the Open Internet and Amobee Constituents

by Gretchen Hyman, March 05, 2021

With the fast-approaching deprecation of the third-party cookie and Apple’s opt-in changes to IDFAs, Google (Alphabet Inc.) put a stake in the ground this week by announcing that it will not create or support alternative personal identifiers for the open web (or non-Google properties).

Google’s stance signals the potential for an even more gated “Google internet” that will further enforce its Walled Garden power over advertisers as it distances itself from creating or backing non-cookie IDs for cross-site usage. This includes some of the industry’s proposed alternatives that leverage permissioned email addresses as a hashed ID.  

To keep Amobee readers up to speed, here’s everything you need to know about this recent announcement, how it affects the industry, and most importantly, how it contrasts with Amobee’s positioning in our future-forward, privacy-compliant consumer identity landscape.

What this means for the ad tech industry

Google’s news specifically affects cross-site tracking and does not change what it does on its own properties. In sum, Google will continue to support first-party relationships on its ad platforms for partners, in which they have direct connections with their own customers.

This decision, however, will make it much harder for brands to achieve apples-to-apples measurement across all campaigns, including with partners such as Google. Instead, advertisers will have to compare measurement solutions from Google and Walled Gardens with other partners on the open web for meaningful insights.

With this news and other ongoing announcements around cookie deprecation, clients need to continue to shift their forecasting and planning strategies and prepare to activate cookieless identity solutions. Google’s decision doesn’t change the need for clients to continue to pursue consent-based solutions or panel-based decisioning. The industry is continuing to adapt and provide fluidity of various consent-based identity solutions in the market to provide the best possible outcomes to meet client KPIs. 

How will this impact Amobee’s identity strategy?

We believe the future of identity is not going to be reliant on a single form of identity. That’s why Amobee is actively vetting all existing in-market identity solutions, and we will integrate with leading identity solutions that drive business for our current and future clients.

We have invested in solutions that are purpose-built for understanding people and households in a consent-based and privacy compliant structure. The future of advertising will leverage this agnostic approach by blending multiple identity solutions to increase cookieless reach and yield better performance. 

More specifically, we are embracing the future of identity by building on the following three key pillars:

  • User-level identifiers: Amobee’s natively integrated identity infrastructure serves to identify users at multiple levels of granularity at the device, person, and household level with user consent and privacy controls. This is currently supported through our partnership with Tapad and LiveRamp. Amobee is also integrating the Unified ID 2.0 framework in the coming quarter and will leverage Tapad’s recently announced Switchboard, which is built to connect various emerging cookieless identifiers to traditional IDs.
  • User-level identities as a panel for measurement: Amobee will extend our usage of panels to create scalable targeting and measurement solutions.
  • Non-user-based targeting and optimization: Amobee is also investing in non-user-based targeting and optimization through partnerships, as well as our proprietary contextual and location-based offerings. Alongside these solutions, Amobee is keeping up with the outcomes from Google Chrome and Apple, in regards to Turtledove/Floc and SKAD, respectively. Based on the finalized solutions from browsers, we will integrate these browser-based measurement and activation capabilities as appropriate.

What’s next for Amobee?

Amobee will continue building technology that enables the free and open web while giving consumers control over their data. We continue to be neutral and interoperable with identity solutions that satisfy both consumer and industry needs. 

It is Amobee’s position that the open web is on a path that will make it operate more and more like the TV ecosystem, where identity is opt-in, panel-based, and weighted for national representation. 

Amobee’s core competencies in panel-based planning, allocation, and optimization of cross-screen audiences will allow our technology to continue to deliver unique value to advertisers. While log-in solutions like LiveRamp will not replace the scale of cookies and IDFAs, they will provide data to enable and enhance our differentiated planning and allocation tools while respecting consumer privacy.

If you have any questions or would like to explore Amobee’s identity technology, please contact us at Solution@amobee.com.

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