Google strives to maintain advertisers completely satisfied whereas bettering person privateness
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At Google’s annual marketing event Thursday, the company shows how advertisers will continue to be able to reach consumers by reducing support for tracking cookies, which advertisers have been using for decades to track users across websites to target ads to switch and to measure their effectiveness.
Google’s marketing livestream is intended to give advertisers, agencies and other partners an impression of the technology giant’s roadmap for the coming year and to gather feedback. Jerry Dischler, VP and General Manager of Ads, one of the moderators, told CNBC that Google will be discussing privacy, measurement and automation at the event.
Given that regulators are scrutinizing users’ privacy and consumers are more concerned about how their personal information is used, tech giants are trying to move forward with changes in the name of privacy. In early 2020, Google announced its intention to end support for third-party cookies in its Chrome browser within two years.
However, advertising remains Google’s core business and needs to keep advertisers happy. The company has been the leader in online advertising for more than a decade and is expected to account for nearly 29% of global digital advertising spend in 2021, according to eMarketer. In 2020, parent company Alphabet had sales of nearly $ 183 billion. Of that, $ 147 billion – over 80% – came from Google’s advertising business, according to the company’s 2020 annual report.
Here’s what Google plans to discuss with advertisers on Thursday:
One focus of Thursday’s event is the company’s collaboration with industry on technologies that it believes are geared towards data protection techniques, but also support promotional purposes.
“It is very clear that consumer expectations with regard to data protection have changed. And we are also seeing signs that governments and regulators are viewing data protection differently,” said Dischler. “And we want to be able to build on a lasting privacy future that has important advertising use cases.”
One of these options, Federated Learning of Cohorts (FLoC), would essentially categorize people into groups based on similar browsing behaviors, which means that only “Cohort IDs” and not individual user IDs are used to identify them as Set goal. It has already been pushed back by privacy advocates and some publishers have said they refuse to test the tool, Digiday reported in April.
Google believes that FLoC improves user privacy while supporting relevant advertising. Suggestions from others in the ad tech space to replace third-party cookies with alternate identifiers might work for large publishers. However, a spokeswoman said the company “needs to think about the wide variety of ranges our product uses, including long-tail pubs.” These publications may not have the same amount of first-party data as larger publishers.
“Right now we’re hearing from some publishers that they are skeptical. They say, ‘Hey, well, we have these alternatives. And we think this will preserve whatever we wanted. So why should we have to compromise? ‘”said Dischler. “Now we feel that these solutions are not permanent and that we should build for the long term future.”
Google also argues that users’ personal browsing history does not leave their browser or device in FLoC and excludes cohorts when they reveal potentially sensitive information. The company also announced that Chrome is rolling out a control that will allow users to opt out of inclusion in FLoC and other privacy sandbox suggestions.
Google plans to discuss solutions for advertisers who want to continue measuring ad performance in a different environment.
“The data protection environment is changing. And our ability to access data is limited,” said Dischler. “At the same time, advertisers have certain expectations about how they measure their return on investment and we want to serve them. So we’re using a combination of first-party data and forecasting that can approximate the precision they previously had with these new systems.”
The company invests in products that use machine learning to provide advertisers with more information about consumer behavior and purchase decisions. Google recently informed advertisers that they can still use activated first-party data for measurement after the cookie changes. The company announced that it is expanding the availability of Customer Match, which allows advertisers to use online and offline data that customers have shared to target ads to themselves and other customers like this one.
Invest in automation
The company plans to stay informed about upcoming automation moves as well.
Google offers a number of automated products. For example, with a product, advertisers can enter multiple headings and descriptions to create a “responsive” search ad. Google Ads then automatically tests these combinations to see which one gives the best results.
According to Google, more than 80% of advertisers use automated bidding, where an advertiser chooses a strategy – like trying to increase website visits or get the most conversions for a certain budget – and then let Google automatically bid for trying to accomplish these goals.
The company is expanding the opportunities for advertisers to develop targeted return on ad spend strategies on more Google channels such as YouTube, search, ad, and more.
“The people who used our automation gave us their business goals. And they rely on the power of machine learning to find out how that business goal can be adapted to our various advertising systems across all these channels,” said Dischler. “When we saw that these systems could withstand a shock like Covid, we said, okay, this really is the best solution for most advertisers in any situation. So we increased our investment there.”
This means in part that the “Performance Max” campaigns will continue to grow after testing started last year, and general availability will follow later in 2021. According to Google, this type of campaign uses its automation to get better results across all channels.