BY ANDY JOHNSON, CHIEF DATA OFFICER, ADSTRA
2020 is a watershed year for the data industry.
Even before the pandemic, a number of long-standing trends were rapidly converging toward an inflection point. 2020 is the year that CCPA went into enforcement, the year Google announced the end of third-party browser cookies and the year Apple moved to extinguish mobile ad IDs. These developments are abolishing the long-established linkages that connect the data-driven ecosystem. The technologies and service models designed around those linkages are rapidly turning obsolete.
Marketers are being thrust into a new era defined by first-party data and identity—an era that requires maximum (and maximally secure) portability between online and offline as well as known and unknown channels. Marketers need a way to orchestrate any form of data or identity to any endpoint, all while protecting user privacy and ensuring proper handling of consumer information. They need solutions that are people-based and privacy-first, agile and extensible, cost-efficient and value-based.
Finding that solution requires rethinking the business of data from the ground up, with first-party data and identity at the center of marketers’ efforts. As they build this new solution, marketers must both position for a future based on identity and a future where the security of that information is paramount.
Privacy regulations reflect a real shift in attitudes
The 2010s didn’t do any favors for marketers when it came to consumers’ attitudes about the handling of customer data, with data breach headlines tied to Yahoo, eBay, Equifax, Target, Uber and countless others.
Consumer privacy legislation, like GDPR and CCPA, reflect the fact that these breaches have led to a true shift in attitudes about data. Consumers want more control, more transparency and more safety.
These new regulations place new liabilities and demands on a marketer’s control and governance of consumer’s information. The more the data flows and the more parties are involved, the greater risk a marketer takes in tackling the data and identity challenge. Relying on multiple partners and point solutions to orchestrate data between different systems leaves marketers exposed at every handoff.
The problem: Too many data handoffs
The net effect of the new privacy regime is that sending customer data to third parties has become an incredible chore with increased stakes. Companies must put in extra effort to convince their legal departments that it’s worth sending the CRM data out for matching, appending, and related processing.
Adding to that, they also need to go through the inevitable contracting marathon of redlines and back-and-forth negotiations around indemnification and limitations of liability. It’s exhausting and, ultimately, not worth it for many marketers.
The solution: Don’t send your data out
What if marketers didn’t have to release any personally identifiable information (PII) to build a persistent identity? What if customer data stayed in their environments, safely behind their firewalls? Risks diminish, speed to execute increases and complexity drops. The trouble is, almost every data and identity solution lives as an external system.
But Adstra—as the industry’s first data bureau—is different, providing the opportunity to leverage modular data assets and identity resolution capabilities safely behind a client’s firewall. There’s no PII to send. Contracting is quick and simple; clients maintain full control of the data and full transparency into its applications. Even the matching can be conducted entirely behind the marketer’s firewall, under their complete control and supervision.
Adstra can ingest any form of identity (individual or household), assign a persistent ID connected to attribute data, and action against any other media or form of identity. It works independent of a brand’s choice in technology and enables brands to meet privacy regulations by linking data back to validated individuals or customers. A data bureau is compatible with CDPs, DMPs, onboarders and marketing clouds, facilitating privacy-compliant portability of critical data and intelligence between these different systems.
We’ll be sharing more about the data bureau and its role in tackling some of the biggest data challenges at our upcoming AdstrAct series. We hope to see you at these sessions.
With over 20 years of experience in the data-driven marketing industry, Johnson is responsible for building strategies that connect data-driven products with advertising solutions. He strives to build a unified organization, aligning data-owner relationships across platforms, brands, and global teams, managing systems and tools to produce and optimize data assets, and overseeing multimillion-dollar budgets.