The Demise of Third Party Cookies: CMOs Playbook to Brace for Impact


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A customer’s right to privacy is the cornerstone of corporate trust. Ever wonder why users receive ads or pop-ups seconds after browsing an article? It’s because user movements, data, and interests are hyper-personalized to attract them to a product, service, or movement.

In January 2020, when Google disclosed the deactivation of third-party cookies, the marketing teams were challenged because their biggest data generation process was about to crumble. Third-party cookies are no longer the key for marketers to make informed decisions and draft a customer journey based on them. Consumers know companies are collecting their data almost every day. While this data may be necessary for a better customer experience, there are several strategies to ensure a right to privacy. Trusted companies will be those who imply the following strategies:

Determine the potential impact.

Marketing leaders must determine the way they use third-party cookies currently. Does the current strategy heavily depend on retargeting ads to attract new customers? Marketing leaders that determine how businesses leverage cookies help them to predict how their presales and advertising methods might evolve. For instance, companies will have to allocate additional resources to define the target audience to ensure ads attract quality leads. Marketing leaders that effectively determine how potentially their process will be impacted due to the demise of third-party cookies will be able to make a strategic plan to minimize the impact.

Publish their privacy policies

Consumers today are becoming more aware of their rights, which gives them more control over how they share their data and how it can be utilized. Marketing teams should set effective policies that set realistic customer expectations about how their data will be stored and used. Enterprises that set the right expectations with their customers regarding how they will use their data will help businesses to gather more valuable customer insights.

“Transparency is an important way to garner customer trust. By making privacy policies clear and easily accessible on a company website, customers will understand how and why their data is being used,” says John Paladino, Vice President of Client Services at InterSystems.

Continuously train the employees who take responsibility for protecting the privacy and sensitive data

The workforce plays a crucial role in protecting customers’ privacy. As the world slowly moves towards a cookieless future, privacy has become a top priority for companies. Businesses should conduct effective data privacy training and certification that makes the employees aware of the latest updates in the privacy laws so that they can adhere to them. To avoid compliance, companies should ensure data privacy training and certification is mandatory for all employees and subcontractors. This approach should be repeated regularly to ensure privacy is maintained throughout the company.

Take action to ensure compliance

A company benefits from not only being transparent with how it handles consumer data but also being accountable. Ensure you and your teams comply with all current regulations, and hold yourself responsible for providing the tools and infrastructure to stay ahead of any compliance changes.

john paladino“Bring in specialists, internally, such as a Data Protection Officer or a Principal Security Architect, to drive the necessary compliance processes and culture within the organization and, externally, as needed, to audit your company, provide teams with proper compliance training, staying up-to-date on current laws and regulations,” adds John.

Gather first-party data

Enterprises need to shift their focus from gathering third-party data to first-party data. Businesses need to ensure they have effective marketing strategies and an integrated MarTech stack that helps them to collect first-party data. This strategy is one of the most effective approaches to brace for impact for a cookieless future.

Ways to collect first-party data

Business marketing leaders can leverage website and mobile app analytics tools available in the market to minimize the impact of the demise of third-party cookies. Marketing teams can use tools like Google Analytics to monitor user behavior on their website and mobile app or gather customer feedback as first-party data through surveys, reviews, and customer support interactions. This will tell them more about customer preferences and help design and implement loyalty programs more effectively, winning customers’ trust. Encourage customers to sign up for loyalty programs and track their purchase history and behavior. They need to leverage email marketing tools and campaigns to gather information about the subscribers, such as their preferences and interests.

Marketing leaders that embrace social media tools in their marketing strategies will improve customer engagement rates. It is crucial to engage with followers on social media platforms and gather information about their interests and behavior. Host contests and giveaways that require customers to provide their contact information and other details. Collecting data through in-store interactions like point-of-sale transactions and customer service interactions will enable businesses to gather more customer insights. Marketing teams need to encourage customers to create and share content related to the brand, which can provide valuable insights into their interests and behavior.

Win customer trust to gather first-party data

Use customer data to personalize interactions and offer tailored experiences to win customers’ trust to gather the required information. Businesses that respond promptly to customer inquiries and provide helpful solutions to their problems will enable their customers to give the needed information voluntarily. Send regular updates and newsletters to customers to keep them engaged and informed about the brand.

Also Read: Intent-Driven Email Automation Qualities to Take into Account

Prioritize Privacy more than Personalization?

Marketing teams are still exploring more opportunities to gather valuable business data despite the death of the third-party cookie. Personalizing plays a crucial role in the customer experience. But if businesses are not able to collect relevant data customizing the customer journey will be a challenging part for businesses. Many business leaders might get into a dilemma about whether to prioritize privacy or to prioritize personalization. Companies can prioritize privacy at the top because no adherence to the compliance policies might have legal litigations, and customers might lose trust in their brand.

CMOs can consider these strategies to brace for the impact of the cookieless future.

Nikhil Sonawane
Nikhil Sonawane
Nikhil Sonawane is a Tech Journalist with OnDot Media. He has 4+ years of technical expertise in drafting content strategies for Marketing automation, and MarTech tools. His Commitment to ongoing learning and improvement helps him to deliver thought-provoking insights and analysis on complex technologies and tools that are revolutionizing modern enterprises. He brings his eye for editorial detail and keen sense of language skills to every article he writes. If he is not working, he will be found on treks, walking in forests, or swimming in the ocean.


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