Research Insights Time for a rethink in digital advertising

Time for a rethink in digital advertising

June 2022
Phocuswright Research

Citing privacy concerns, two of the major browsers - Firefox and Safari - have already eliminated third-party cookies. When Google Chrome does the same by the end of 2023, this will have major impact on all marketers, as Chrome owns 60% of the web browser market. Without third-party cookies, all digital marketers will lack insight into customer behavior beyond their own website interactions according to Phocuswright’s latest travel research spotlight The State of Digital Advertising in Travel: Time for Rethink.

While the loss of third-party cookies may present a challenge for digital marketers, there are emerging ways to deal with this change. The most important advice from experts such as Zeek Coleman from Adara: "Listen to your data". We are entering a new world of walled gardens where data resides behind firewalls and thus may be inaccessible. The key is understanding internal data and breaking it down to define customer segments and behavioral trends. This analysis can then be compared against established third-party data sources such as Adara or Sojern to further refine the specific segments identified, enhancing internal data.

The future of digital advertising in travel include:

  • SSI ushering in even bigger changes: Varied use cases paint a picture of the emerging world of SSI designed to simplify all aspects of travel and provide travelers greater control over their information
  • Personalization vs. Privacy: This paradox is real for all e-marketers, but significantly more impactful in travel due to the relative infrequency of purchases versus other consumer goods.
  • Bigger opportunity for smaller players?: The loss of cookies would help democratize digital advertising, enabling smaller players and marketers to compete with mega travel companies on digital advertising spend.

With an increased level of consumer control emerging, next-generation travel e-marketers need to persuade travelers to opt-in and provide access to personal data to improve digital ad campaigns. The full report addresses the immediate, near-term and mid-term factors impacting digital advertising, the issues they represent and strategies to consider to address these challenges.

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