There’s a fascinating interview at eMarketer that underscores something we’re witnessing more and more: cookies are gone as a top tech choice for tracking consumers.
Instead, ever since Facebook acquired ad targeting firm Atlas from Microsoft, consumers are increasingly targeted on the basis of what information Facebook has acquired about its users.
The interview posed questions to David Jakubowski, the Director of Product Marketing for Adtech at Facebook, and Facebook’s Atlas honcho Erik Johnson.
First of all, is Atlas living up to its billing?
“At Adweek, we announced that we are pushing the market into the next paradigm of “people-based marketing,” says Jakubowski. “We’ve gone out to all six agency holding companies, and we are in the process of cutting those strategic deals. The one that’s public is Omnicom, and we have been onboarding some of their clients.”
Will that “people-based” marketing strategy make cookies obsolete?
“People are using multiple devices, and they’re beginning transactions or tasks on one device and finishing on something else,” notes Jakubowski. “The technology that we use to measure on a mobile device is a cookie, and a cookie is fundamentally flawed. Atlas solves cross-device because Facebook is being used by 1.3 billion people, and if people are using Facebook on one device, they’re very likely using it on all of their devices.”
Jakubowski believes in the tracking mechanisms Facebook is building.
“We’ve got the demographic information to allow people to build targeting segments that are relevant, allow for better targeting demographically and allow for better tracking and conversions across devices to make sure you’re not serving ads to people who have already seen them,” he explains.
What does Johnson have to say about something in his bailiwick: the “online-offline issue”?
“An advertiser can use any CRM system they want,” says Johnson. “If they’re collecting information on their customers that includes a form of identification that we can match using the same technology we use in Custom Audiences on Facebook, then you would be able to upload that into Atlas.”
“We’re still working on some aspects of that platform, and not every merchant collects that information,” explains Johnson. “I don’t want to overstate that we’ve solved offline to online in every single instance, but it does seem to me that, based on my own personal experience and the people I’ve talked to, people are sharing more of that information.”
One thing the pair claims to have learned is that their people-based approach might lead to marketers taking more credit, not less.
“The number one thing that surprised me was that when you shift to people-based marketing, you see that there are people that you have served ads to who have bought something, either in your store or on your website, that you weren’t giving yourself credit for,” Jakubowski says.
The interview is a must-read. To check it out, click here.