Demise of the Cookie: PreBid

by Joy Brazelle

So today’s ‘morning-ism’ is ‘Hiding in the Crowd.’ I’ve seen this concept in a few articles lately. Although it seemed familiar, when I Googled it, I found this Spiderman reference, which seemed like a good illustration of the whole point of the new privacy changes being implemented by the browsers. (Yes, I can nerdier up an already nerdy reference).

There has been a lot of talk about the ‘demise of the cookie’ and the impact that it will have on online advertising, targeting and remarking. Sad news for marketers. Doom and gloom for some who write about it.

But innovation for those who can think clearly about it and listen to what is going on. There has been a ton of thought and action about how to react to this.

Bottom line – the goal is not to recreate cookies. That would be incredibly counterproductive. There is a good reason why cookies shouldn’t work anymore. (Yes, technically if the browsers did not change, they would still work as well as they ever have [which is questionable if you really get into the details]). So accept that. And accept the new reality.

The Next Best Thing (or two things)

Thing One:

Differential Personalization – I’ve talked about it before. It is the practice of publishers and data companies who have first party data, ‘obfuscating’ the data (making it anonymous) and injecting some ‘noise’ (fabricated data entries) to create audiences that are solidly, behaviorally like ‘cohorts,’ yet anonymous. So targeting is still a viable option, you just know that you are targeting ‘them’ generally, not ‘him’ or ‘her’, specifically.

Thing Two:

Prebid – This is awesome for so many reasons, not the least of which is that it’s bringing together groups in the ad industry who historically have never really gotten together to think through and create solutions for these new challenges that privacy changes are creating. Awesome.

Not to get too detailed, but as a bit of background, Prebid “created a simple, open tech layer upon which companies can add their code to a standard but optimized foundation which makes it easier to implement header bidding.

Prebid.js is the most widely used header bidding “container” or “wrapper” on the web”. (

You can see how bringing buy-side, sell-side, agencies, and other ad tech companies together would create the perfect storm of opportunity to find alternatives and solutions to the demise of the cookie and other fallout of privacy changes. There are some examples here. But if you want to be really intrigued, impressed, and want to think more about this, listen to this. It’s long. But it’s worth it.

So there are two examples of how the new normal of online advertising will be hiding in the crowd. We can all breathe a little sigh of relief and be thankful that only Peter Parker can call us out (nerd, nerd, nerd, I know)…

Want to learn how to succeed in a Cookie-less World? Don’t miss this webinar on May 20. Register Now

Joy Brazelle

Solutions Lead

I’ve spent over 18 years helping clients use analytics to improve the performance of their websites , SEO, paid search and other marketing programs, with a brief detour to the FinTech worlds to see how alternative payment options impact the very, very bottom of the funnel.

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