The story that started here as GOOGLE’S DÉJÀ VU will have lots of future twists and turns as the (third-party) cookie crumbles. We decided to follow the chapters that we actually understand and think are important in the Marketing Wilderness context. Let’s do this in snackable ‘headline/behind-the-headline’ format:

Apple’s Move to Block User Tracking Spawns New Digital Ad Strategies

—The Wall Street Journal, Mar 26, 2021 [1]

Behind the Headline: Just like Google, Apple is only stopping the collection of third-party data through (third-party) apps on its phones. Remember, Apple is the king of first-party mobile data based on device IDs. The first announcement of this plan was first made almost a year ago. It looks very much like Google’s third-party cookie deprecation plan—a move that signals a commitment to privacy and/or transparency to legal and government stakeholders, but doesn’t hurt Apple’s first-party mobile data supremacy in any real way.

Adobe Announces CDP Built for First-Party Data

—, Apr 30, 2021 [2]

Behind the Headline: One of the logical strategies for those directly affected by third-party data deprecation is to build and use proprietary first-party data. However, scale is the issue here. No one can match the volume of first-party data collected by Google and Apple, so the latter will be the best at future consumer targeting, whatever the algorithm.

Adobe sees an opportunity in providing the tools for everyone other than the behemoths to collect and use data in real time from all sources to target new customers. This collection of tools falls under the term ‘Customer Data Platform’, which Adobe has tucked under its Customer Experience Platform, with literally dozens of other related products. There are so many components to this platform you can’t even start your Adobe ‘purchase journey’ without talking directly to an Adobe salesperson. How wonderfully old-school!

Clearly, Adobe would love to repeat their best-in-class success first enjoyed in the graphic design world. But CDP is only for the super ad-tech savvy. It makes most sense for the publishers and ad-tech agencies [3] as opposed to small or even medium-sized brands. Let’s see how this cookie crumbles.end-of-post-symbol

Notes and references:

  1. Patience Haggin & Tim Higgins, “Apple’s Move to Block User Tracking Spawns New Digital Ad Strategies”, The Wall Street Journal, Mar 26, 2021.
  2. Stephanie Vaughn, “Adobe Announces CDP Built for First-Party Data“,, Apr 30, 2021.
  3. Formerly know as media planning & buying agencies.
  4. Main image credit: Baking Kneads, LLC.