Why Nobody Will Be Talking About Cookies in 2024

For most marketers, shedding the extra “weight” of third-party cookies might just be their New Year’s resolution.

That’s because cookies are (finally) going away next year, thanks to increasing privacy regulations and major browsers like Google Chrome phasing them out. Advertisers are now shifting their strategies, directing more ad spend towards retail media networks and collecting first-party data alongside emerging technologies such as AI, signaling a major shift in how consumers are reached.

“Nobody is going to be talking about cookies in 2024,” Brian Mandelbaum, CEO of data commerce company Attain, said during a panel discussion with eMarketer earlier this week. “Looking ahead, the advertising landscape is clearly shifting toward a reliance on first-party data, as it not only complies with the growing privacy regulations but also offers a more accurate and effective means to drive business outcomes.”

This looming shift is significant, added Mandelbaum, as it will better align with evolving consumer privacy expectations while also bolstering digital advertising’s promise of efficiency that drives better business outcomes.

A New Era

Still, this new era of advertising is not without its caveats: “We must be cautious with retail media networks, as they can create their own walled gardens, potentially limiting the broader scope and reach of our advertising efforts,” Mandelbaum said. “But as retail media networks grow, they present a unique opportunity for highly targeted, context-rich advertising. It’s crucial for marketers to understand and navigate their inherent complexities and limitations to fully leverage their potential.”

Paul Verna of Insider Intelligence, who moderated the discussion, noted that the departure from third-party cookies is a double-edged sword. “On one hand, the absence of third-party cookies pushes us towards more transparent and ethical data practices,” said Verna. “On the other, it demands a more sophisticated approach to data analysis and utilization, which is where AI steps in as a powerful ally.”

Verna also noted the rise of AI as a crucial factor in this transition. “Artificial Intelligence is rapidly becoming the backbone of modern digital advertising, providing unparalleled insights and optimization capabilities,” Verna said.

This integration of AI into advertising strategies is poised to redefine the industry’s approach to consumer engagement and campaign effectiveness, according to Verna. “Its ability to analyze vast data sets and predict consumer behavior is transforming how we understand and engage with audiences, offering a new level of precision in targeting and personalization in a post-cookie world,” he added.

other stories you might like