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Google is saying goodbye to third-party cookies

Google recently announced that it will be eliminating third-party cookies over the next two years. This effort aims to improve online privacy for consumers. Let's break down what that means for nonprofit organizations and their digital media plans in the future.

WHAT ARE THIRD-PARTY COOKIES?

Third-party cookies are data files created by website domains other than the one a user is visiting. They provide insightful understandings about website traffic. The data storage is used to identify a visitor’s digital footprint, personalize website experiences and track specific browsing history for cross-site tracking and retargeting.

You’re not alone if this news and the subsequent reactions have left you feeling a little confused on what this means for your nonprofit organization’s digital efforts. Over the last few weeks, many groups have voiced their opinions on the announcement – ranging from praise to criticism.

Remember when everyone had to go from regular websites to secure websites? Everyone panicked, but in the end we’re all better off.

HERE’S OUR PERSPECTIVE AND PREDICTIONS FOR THE FUTURE

Despite some of the articles you’ve probably seen, it isn’t all doom and gloom. Advertisers will still get their brand in front of their audience.

Similar to Facebook, Google could be attempting to build their own walled garden, positioning themselves as the end-all-be-all for advertising consumer data.

Both tech giants have an increasing hold on consumer data. By getting rid of third-party cookies, advertisers may have to go straight to the source – Google – if they want to use that data for digital media efforts.

HOW WILL THIS AFFECT THE WAY IN WHICH NONPROFITS ARE ABLE TO UTILIZE DATA WITHIN DIGITAL MEDIA?

There’s no need to panic.

Although this may seem intimidating, this will ultimately have the biggest effect on those who use retargeting on a regular basis.

These changes could put more of an emphasis on search and content advertising, which are both still powerful options. The good news is nonprofits will still be able to target their donors with relevant information.

RKD’s list of vendors include key programmatic advertisers and demand side platforms (DSP) that hold a standing partnership with Google. That means they have already begun the groundwork for securing a solution.

In addition, the use of first-party data will continue to sustain a large emphasis in website learnings. This puts us – and you – in a great position when it comes to digital advertising.

For nonprofits, building your targeting off your first-party donor data is always the way to go. Relying on your CRM data will become an even more effective solution as we move away from third-party cookies.

To sum it all up – two years is a long way away, so a lot is still unknown. However, with the current workarounds in place, the strength of our vendors and your donor data, we’re able to help you navigate this change smoothly.

Shane Thornal

Shane Thornal is an experienced leader within the digital landscape and serves as Senior Director, Digital Media, at RKD Group. Shane understands programmatic media buying and knows what questions to ask to drive campaigns forward. He is a strategic thinker, focused and extremely hard working. Shane understands how to build high-performing teams, has great industry knowledge and knows the triggers to pull to get the best out of everyone. He is driven and dedicated to his clients’ goals and objectives, and will not rest until they are achieved.

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