How marketers can succeed in the cookieless era: Best Media Info

Ever since the deprecation of third-party cookies by tech companies, like Google and Apple, marketers have been trying to overcome the hurdle of targeted marketing, in the absence of individual tracking.

To tackle the data-related challenges of personalisation and measurement in the post-cookies era, a panel at IAMAI’s India Digital Summit comprising of President, Commercial – (Asia), Nielsen, Arnaud Frade; Chief Executive Officer, Havas Media Network India, Mohit Joshi; Senior Executive Officer, Maruti Suzuki India, Shashank Shrivastava; Chief Digital Marketing Officer, ITC Limited, Shuvadip Banerjee engaged in a discussion on the ever-evolving landscape of modern marketing, explored strategies to adapt to a cookieless era and emphasised the pivotal role of data in shaping successful marketing strategies.

Vivek Malhotra, group chief marketing officer and chief operating officer – consumer revenue, India Today Group, was the moderator.

Leverage the wealth of data 

Srivastava initiated the discussion by highlighting that prioritising customer understanding is essential—a fact often sidelined.

He explained, “In earlier times, this understanding of the customer relied on sampling, market research, and analysis of demographics and psychographics. However, the abundance of data and advanced technologies now allow for a significantly more personalised approach to customer insights. Maruti Suzuki’s sustained market dominance, holding approximately 45% market share over four decades, stems from aligning with evolving consumer behaviours and processes. Extensively researched, the car purchasing journey involves 26 touchpoints, 24 of which Maruti Suzuki has seamlessly digitised. Aspects like test drives and delivery are transitioning to digital.”

“This transformation underscores the shift towards treating cars not just as vehicles but as repositories of data. Leveraging this wealth of data empowers us to engage with consumers on a deeply personalised level, a cornerstone of our success,” shared Srivastava.

Quality over quantity

Frade emphasised the importance of utilising data effectively, noting that the focus should not just be on acquiring more data but on obtaining better quality data.

He expressed, “Technological advancement also generates vast amounts of data, which must be leveraged more effectively. The challenge lies in obtaining precise, high-quality data that empowers marketers, brand owners, and other stakeholders to make informed decisions. In this rapidly evolving landscape, understanding the changing dynamics of the shopper journey is paramount. The proliferation of mobile technology and diverse forms of commerce has fundamentally altered how consumers engage with brands. We are witnessing a transition from discrete ‘moments of truth’ to a continuous journey, where decision-making occurs at various touchpoints. Marketers must excel not only at the final interaction but throughout the entire marketing funnel.” He summarized, “It is not about more data, it about better data.”

Banerjee believed that while amassing a significant amount of data, traditional measures like top-of-mind awareness and purchase motivation persist.

He said, “The marketing landscape has evolved, with real-time multi-touch attribution and market mix models becoming commonplace, aiding investment allocation. Despite lacking a unified media measurement standard, metrics like scroll depth on owned assets and engagement within communities offer insights into consumer behaviour.”

“Additionally, distinguishing between always-on and start-stop campaigns and measuring baseline improvements helps gauge campaign effectiveness. Despite the abundance of data, the challenge lies in harnessing it effectively to inform decision-making and optimise campaign impact across different funnel stages and mediums,” voiced Banerjee.

Don’t be data blind 

Joshi cautioned that amidst the sea of data, there’s a risk of becoming data-blind and misinterpreting insights.

He stated, “At Havas, we’re addressing this challenge of misinterpreting data head-on. We aim to refine our approach to a market mix model and ensure clients receive accurate input-output assessments. While data is invaluable, we must ensure it guides us in the right direction. By striking a balance between bottom-of-the-funnel optimisation and top-of-the-funnel investment, we can sustainably drive acquisition and growth. The key is to navigate the complexities of data and maximise its potential to drive client success.”  [email protected]

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