A web cookie is a packet of data that a user’s web browser stores on the computer when the user visits a website. It helps that website track the user’s activity while on that website, including visits and purchase decisions. Cookies are limited to a single device and have an expiration date, typically 30 days. Digital marketers have been using cookies to track online behavior and target users with ads for the past two decades. However, cookies are no longer the best method of accomplishing these goals.
The Problem with Cookies
The biggest problem with web cookies is they are a form of device-based targeting. Data insights are generally limited to a single, non-mobile device such as a desktop computer. Marketers can’t know for sure whose behavior they’re tracking since multiple users could be sharing that device. Furthermore, cookies eventually expire, so they only provide a small window for tracking behavioral data. Cookies are also isolated from other audience data such as mobile app usage, call center data and in-store purchases.
As you can see, cookies don’t provide you with the whole picture of how your audience is interacting with your brand across different channels and touch points. The lack of a complete picture means you could miss out on key information that can help you improve your marketing funnel and ultimately increase your sales.
Overcome Cookie Limitations with People Based Marketing
Cookies are no longer the only means of identifying and targeting digital audiences. Companies often collect tons of data related to customer engagement, but the data is often siloed into disparate systems. Thankfully, recent advances in technology are allowing brands to use their data to understand audience behaviors and connect with customers.
A people-based marketing (PBM) strategy can help remove data silos and extract insights to improve targeting. The PBM approach focuses on creating a holistic view of your most valuable audiences across all channels and touch points. This is achieved by collecting web cookie data, CRM data, call center records, in-app purchases, in-store transactions and other data silos into a centralized location. The data is transformed into rich consumer profiles while safeguarding the personally identifiable information (PII) of the individuals. From there, advertisers can match the profiles to media publishers’ inventory.
Move Beyond Cookies with an Audience Management Platform
Digital marketers have long relied on web cookies to identify and target audiences across digital media. With new technologies opening the door to more accurate identity-based targeting, cookie data just doesn’t cut it anymore. But making the shift requires new tools of the trade. An audience management platform (AMP) is a powerful tool that helps brands escape the limitations of cookie data and adopt a people based approach.
An AMP uses anonymized persistent identifiers to match audience data across silos and consolidate them into single identities. Advertisers use these robust profiles to understand how individuals interact with your brand across all channels and create more meaningful, personalized customer experiences across all touch points.
Getting Started with People Based Marketing
The advent of people-based marketing means that digital marketers no longer have to rely on cookies as the only means of targeting. Cookies provide only limited insight into web browsing behavior, whereas a people-based approach uses multiple data sources that can include cookies. People-based marketing helps brands create an entire picture of the people who buy from you, so you can target prospective customers much more accurately than with cookies alone. How much more accurate, you ask? A report published by Time Inc’s ad tech company Viant called Power of the People found that 83% of people-based marketing campaigns perform better than cookie based marketing.
Are you ready to transform your digital media campaigns and increase conversions with a people-based approach? Contact Wingman Media today to see how we can help you!