SAN FRANCISCO — An initiative from three big ad-tech players to create a single pool of user identities is nearing technological completion and could go live from this coming Q2, according to an exec from one of the players involved.

AppNexus, Index Exchange and LiveRamp created The Advertising ID Consortium last May in an effort to reach scale versus the two big giants of digital advertising. It is trying to advance two pieces of technology:

  • Open Ad ID: used by the consortium members as the standard for single­ device cookie identification.
    Open IdentityLink: a common people-based identifier provided to consortium members, for resolving identity across channels, devices, and platforms.

In this video interview with Beet.TV, AppNexus marketplace partnerships SVP Patrick McCarthy provides an update on the consortium’s roll-out.

The progress has been really good. We’re almost done, kind of completing the consortium set-up as a legal entity with all the right bylaws and agreements,” he says.

“AppNexus is very close to finishing our portion of the tech that helps power it, and Live Ramp has finished their version of the tech, so if AppNexus and Index will go live with Identity Link-enabled supply using the Open Ad ID in Q2, so that’s really exciting.

“Then we (will) continue to sign up platforms that would like to join the consortium and participate. We (have) started evangelizing it to publishers and marketers. For the most part, publishers and marketers don’t have to do anything technically.”

Google and Facebook control 60% to 70% of US digital ad spending, according to an analysis of several sources’ figures by Digital Content Next, the pro-publisher group campaigning against the pair’s dominance.

But competition is not the only reason for The Advertising ID Consortium’s creation.

“The effort is to really solve two problems,” McCarthy continues:

  1. “The identity structure of the open internet and programmatic advertising has really been based on cookies, (and now) a lot of the environments out there (like) connected TV, (and) mobile devices are becoming more and more cookie-less.”
  2. “Marketers today don’t have a very good ability on the open internet to be able to reach someone based on their identity. All of those CRM-based budgets are really going to Facebook (and) to Google to some extent, which is great for Facebook and Google – but, for the rest of the publishers and marketers out there, they want to be able to reach those users on the open internet as well.”

This video is part of a series produced in San Francisco at the RampUp 2018 conference. The series is sponsored by Alphonso. For more videos from the series, please visit this page.