Why is first-party data so hard to come by, and why are publishers not seizing the opportunity to provide the data advertisers want?

Why is first-party data so hard to come by, and why are publishers not seizing the opportunity to provide the data advertisers want?

1st party data is the data that a company collects about its own customers and prospects. This data is highly valuable to advertisers, who can use it to target the advertising more effectively. However, 1st party data is often difficult to come by, and publishers are missing out on a great opportunity to provide this data to advertisers.

There are a number of reasons why 1st party data is so difficult to come by. First, many companies are reluctant to share this data with others, for fear that it will be used to target their customers more effectively. Second, even when companies do share this data, it is often in the form of aggregated data that is not very useful to advertisers. And third, 1st party data is often stored in silos, making it difficult to access and use.

Despite the challenges, 1st party data is still a valuable asset for advertisers. By working with publishers to provide this data, advertisers can more effectively target their advertising and reach their target audiences. In addition, 1st party data can help advertisers track the performance of their advertising campaigns and make necessary adjustments.

Though 1st party data can be difficult to come by, publishers have a great opportunity to provide this data to advertisers. By doing so, they can help advertisers more effectively reach their target audiences and improve the performance of their customers advertising campaigns.

As the 3rd party cookies get blocked in a larger and larger extent the data is disappearing from the programmatic marketing channel and this way of buying media is something advertisers love. Publishers that can effectively and securely expose their 1st party data to the programmatic universe will be winners in the post 3rd party cookie landscape.

Why aren’t the publishers providing the data that is in such high demand?
  1. First of all, despite many publishers arguing to the contrary, data is not in their comfort zone. They are used to working with unstructured data i.e. content, not structured data.
  2. Technology is complicated to build and with changes happening very fast it is hard to keep up, even for providers “native” to the digital landscape and Big Data. As a publisher with main focus on journalistic content it is almost impossible to stake out the data landscape and be competitive in it.
  3. For a very long time publishers have relied on 3rd parties providing the data advertisers want. And now that it is disappearing many publishers are waiting for a new 3rd party to solve the issue. But 3rd parties can’t fix it without 3rd party cookies.
  4. It is hard to translate the 1st party data that publishers have into actionable targeting data that advertisers want and need. Because it means both structuring data, enriching data and innovating the delivery methods of the data.
  5. GDPR scares publishers, this makes them wait for someone else to take the first step and follow once someone else triggered the legal minefield. This makes innovation hard & slow and it means any adaptation of new solutions takes longer time.
So what can publishers do?

Publishers could however seize this opportunity and make their ad inventory more relevant through their own 1st party data, by:

1. Collecting data from website visitors and storing it on logged in profiles

2. Use 1st party cookies or other secure tracking technologies that does not leak data to unauthorized parties

3. Leverage their content to create valuable data points like interest and context

4. Use customer loyalty programs to build up what they know about their customer base

5. Combine 1st and 3rd party data and link it to first party identifiers across their ad network

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