SAN FRANCISCO – Apple is blowing up a key piece of infrastructure many advertisers use to target iOS users.

But, whilst many in the industry are fearful of the impact of IDFA changes, a growing number are coming to believe they also represent an evolution toward a more-effective, more-robust and more-trustful relationship with audiences.

The tech company is due to change its Identifier for Advertisers (IDFA), which advertisers use to identify iOS devices so they can deliver customized advertising, to a default opt-in.

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It had been due to make the change in this month’s iOS 14 release, but has delayed the change to early 2021 amid industry concern.

In this video interview with Beet.TV, Travis Clinger, SVP of addressability and ecosystem at LiveRamp, says the changes will be profound – but the change they drive will be ultimately beneficial.

30% opt-in fear

“The iOS 14 changes are a big deal for the ecosystem,” Clinger says. “This is a major change.”

He thinks the experience from a similar, earlier change, in which iOS now routinely asks users for active permission to continue using location tracking, shows the impact will be significant.

“We suspect that many users may not consent,” Clinger says. “We’ve seen … 70% opt-out for Location Services.

“The general industry consensus is that we’ll have similar opt-out rates, 70%, potentially even higher.”

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Leaning into first-party

A similar threat is seen in the ongoing deprecation of third-party cookies, with Google’s Chrome set to follow Safari and Firefox by 2022.

But what lies on the other side of these changes is not a barren wasteland of targeting opportunity but, rather, a chance to establish real, close audience relationships that use of traditional ad targeting methods had always seemed to keep at arms-reach, execs like Clinger are saying.

“Publishers need to lean on their first-party data,” he says. “IDFA is all around device data, but publishers have user-level relationships with their consumers, they have relationships that transcend devices.”

Clinger advises brands to begin asking for email addresses, and a lot sooner than they typically may be doing today.

Publishers, too, are currently deploying strategies to do just that. For each party, it is a case of providing adequate value exchange.

Cross-device identity

One of the beauties of consented relationships with users is that they can transcend devices.

No longer is the desktop PC king. Multi-device modalities are commonplace these days. To account for that, ad-tech has attempted to match up users’ different devices into single user profiles – often with sub-par results.

But, when a user is authenticated with a publisher or brand, and when that authentication is required on each device touchpoint – be it mobile app, desktop website or iPad – the advertiser or publisher are guaranteed to see the real user each and every time.

Clinger says LiveRamp is approaching the problem by offering a “consented IDFA graph” , plus its Authenticated Traffic Solution (ATS), which allows operators to leverage user accounts for mobile app, display and connected TV.

Going to the Source

The company also offers IdentityLink, its people-based, deterministic identity solution.

It gets user profiles from publishers and passes them to ad bid requests, effectively allowing advertisers to bid on real identities rather than cookies, enabling cross-device targeting, frequency-capping and private marketplace continuity.

This summer, MediaMath connected IdentityLink to its Source platform, allowing ad buyers to bid on user identities across display, mobile and connected TV.

You are watching a segment from a Beet.TV series titled Programmatic Buying: Accountability & Transparency in Focus presented by MediaMath.  For more videos from the series, please visit this page