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Jun 06, 2024

First-party data is crucial to success in a cookieless world

Dayna Lang
Author Dayna Lang

Third-party cookies are being phased out by major browsers like Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox and first-party data is more important than ever.

While third-party cookies rely on data from other websites to track the behavior of users, first-party data gathers information from a site’s own users and visitors. First-party data is not only reliable, but it is also readily available to marketers – all they have to do is ask. 

Marketers can leverage targeting information by collecting data directly from customers while maintaining user privacy and respecting user consent (two key factors in the shift away from third-party cookies). Gathering this data is also cost-effective and is considered highly accurate

First-party data is the gold standard for many marketers because of its ease of use and high accuracy. According to Advertiser Perception, it is the number one data type used for transactions. With third-party cookies falling out of favor, this data collection method is more important than ever in a marketer’s targeting tool set. 

Identity solutions used worldwide

First-party data gives marketers the information they need to provide privacy-compliant media in this new post-cookie age. Alongside other methods (like behavioral targeting and contextual targeting), first-party data rounds out a targeting strategy – giving marketers more than enough information to live without their dependence on third-party cookies. 

Customers are also more than willing to provide their information if they see value in it. 

According to a study by BCG, 90% of consumers are willing to share their data if given the right incentive. Some examples of incentives are improved convenience, personalized experiences, or tailored discounts.

Customers are less likely to provide their first-party data without enticing rewards, but these rewards don’t have to be extravagant. Small, cost-effective rewards are easy to provide and incredibly effective. 

Data-poor brands can still benefit from first-party data

Brands with less access to first-party data may be concerned, but they don’t need to be. While 49% of advertisers globally are cited to believe their own first-party data is the strongest solution to replacing third-party cookies, data-poor brands can still leverage this information to target audiences. 

How so? Through building partnerships. They can gain sustainable access to customer information by working with similar businesses and establishing relationships. 

Something to keep in mind when working with partners to acquire first-party data is consumer consent. The crux of the cookie issue has always been privacy and permissions. By acting in the interest of consent and data security at all times, marketers can future-proof themselves against further privacy protection measures.

One thing these brands need to consider when accessing first-party data is the very reason third-party cookies fell out of favor. Customer privacy needs to come first, which entails building trust and maintaining consent for collecting and using all personal data. Customers are willing to share their information because they trust you; if you break that trust, your first-party data strategy falls apart.

Third-party cookies were the crux of many traditional digital marketing strategies, but with their disappearance comes an opportunity to leverage first-party data for customer targeting. By providing appropriate incentives, marketers can easily gather and leverage user information to target ads and provide tailored services for their customers. This makes first-party data an obvious and effective part of a post-cookie marketing strategy. 


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