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40% of digital marketers ‘not prepared’ for the death of third-party cookies, finds IAB Europe research

Newly-published research from IAB Europe, the leading European-level industry association for the digital advertising and marketing ecosystem, has revealed that 75% of industry respondents believe alternatives to third-party cookies are ‘very important’ or ‘critical’ but 40% feel their company is not fully prepared for the changes.

The findings are part of IAB Europe’s latest report – ‘Guide to the Post-Third-Party Cookie Era’ – to prepare brands, agencies, publishers and tech intermediaries for the much-anticipated post-third-party cookie advertising ecosystem.

The guide, developed by experts from IAB Europe’s Programmatic Trading Committee, updates the first edition in May 2020, provides the latest insights into the many alternative solutions that are being developed to replace third-party cookies when they are phased out in 2022, including context, identity, the use of telco data and the Google Federated Learning of Cohorts (FLoC) initiative.

To understand how involved stakeholders were with the different initiatives and how prepared they are for the new era, IAB Europe ran an industry poll in Q4 2020. Respondents were asked what new opportunities and challenges they foresaw, and how prepared they are for these changes. They were also asked about the impact they think it will have on targeting, measurement, verification and overall investment. Over 100 industry professionals completed the poll.

Commenting on the report, Helen Mussard, CMO, IAB Europe ( pictured above), said: “With less than 12 months to go until third-party cookies are fully deprecated, now is the time for every company within the digital advertising ecosystem to work together to deliver the solutions that are outlined in the IAB Europe Guide. As the European voice for digital advertising and marketing, our role is to help our members navigate these changes and ensure the €23bn European programmatic industry can continue to innovate and thrive in this new era.”

The 14,000-word guide provides a deep-dive into the following themes:

  • The three contributing factors to the depletion of third-party cookies;
  • The impact on stakeholder usage of proprietary platforms;
  • The impact on measurement and ad verification;
  • A detailed overview of each of the current third-party post-cookie solutions;
  • Information on how stakeholders can contribute to the ongoing development of these solutions.

Chair of the IAB Europe Programmatic Trading Committee and DoubleVerify Senior Director of Business Development, David Goddard, said: “Consumer privacy and respect in advertising is paramount. This guide – a collective effort of the IAB Europe’s Programmatic Trading Committee – includes input from companies across the digital ad ecosystem and is meant to provide an understanding of where we are now, and what options we have to move forward.”

Contributors to the guide include: Adform, BBC Global News, CNN International, DoubleVerify, IAB France, IAB Ireland,  IAB Tech Lab, IAB Turkey, ID5, Index Exchange, Integral Ad Science, Magnite, MediaMath, Novatiq, OMD, Oracle Data Cloud, Outbrain, PubMatic, United Internet Media, Xandr, Yieldbird, Zeotap and Zeta.

IAB Europe will be hosting a webinar featuring contributors to the Guide on 23 February 2021 at 3pm GMT to expand further on the themes covered. This will be a free industry event and registration is available here.

You can download the IAB Europe ‘Guide to the Post-Third-Party Cookie Era’ here.