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Privacy in Digital Advertising

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People are continually pushing for greater privacy in their internet usage, resulting in government legislation and regulations. Spearheaded by the California Consumer Privacy Act, many states in the country are following suit with marked developments this year for undergoing bills such as the Virginia Consumer Data Protection Act, Washington Privacy Act, and New York Privacy Act.

Take a look at this graph provided by We Are Social on worldwide concerns regarding data use:

Americans appear more concerned with this misuse at 66% compared to 64% of the global population. As such, top companies like Google, Apple, and Facebook each have their own stances on the issue and have implemented multiple actions in accordance to this, balancing the demands of both users and advertisers.

With these concerns in mind, how can you ensure that these enhanced privacy measures won’t severely affect your campaigns?

Google to halt third-party cookie tracking

Google is planning to halt Chrome’s use of its current tracking technology through cookies moving forward in hopes of incorporating privacy-first measures.

As an alternative, Google is experimenting with FLoC (Federated Learning Cohorts) ad technology which groups users with others who might have similar interests and browsing habits. Since FLoC looks at things at the group instead of the individual level, Google can protect users’ sensitive data and browsing history.

They plan on rolling out this technology through trials by next month and begin testing FLoC-based advertising in Google Ads by the second quarter of the year. FLoC is only one among the several other proposed solutions for Google to address privacy in advertising as shared by Chetna Bindra, Google’s group product manager in user trust and privacy. Read through her post here for more information.

What does this mean for your business?

As cookies have gained a negative reputation in recent years, adopting FLoC can be one of the ways to address and eliminate this concern for both tech companies and advertisers. While it is a change that will affect everyone in the digital sphere, it is not the time to fret as data can still be collected, analyzed, and used to guide your strategies and campaigns.

In fact, Google estimates that advertisers can garner at least “95% of the conversions per dollar spent when compared to cookie-based advertising, for reaching in-market and affinity audiences” with this new technology.

Apple Vs. Facebook on Privacy

Apple recently introduced its newest feature, App Tracking Transparency (ATT), which will require apps to ask permission from users in tracking their web usage and behaviors. Set for an early spring release, it has attracted criticisms from companies such as Facebook who have claimed that small businesses will be hit hardest with this update as they rely on personalized advertising to reach potential customers.

Moreover, Facebook is gearing to launch a notification among iPhone users to opt-in for activity tracking on their platforms, Facebook and Instagram. The back and forth conversation between these two companies is surely one to monitor as it can determine how advertising will continue to develop in the coming years.

As privacy concerns change and evolve, you need to be able to keep up with the disruptions for your marketing campaigns to remain effective. It’s now more crucial than ever that your strategies align with these updates.

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