Thanks to Chrome Changes, Email is Needed More Than Ever


Nearly all Adtech and Martech platforms have been utilizing third party-cookies for years to track website visitors, collect data to better personalize and help target ads to the right audiences.

The digital marketing world thrived on cookies, but things are about to drastically change.

Since 2013, Apple’s Intelligent Tracking Prevention (IP) and Firefox’s Enhanced Tracking Protection (ETP) have blocked third-party cookies. Earlier this month, Google Chrome (which is made up of more than 56% of the web browser market) has joined the party by announcing its decision to also phase out third-party cookies over two years to eliminate cross-site tracking.

Third-party cookies are not only crumbling due to Apple, Firefox, and Google. Take a look at other factors LiveIntent mentions in a recent piece:

  • Cookies reside on a single device or browser, yet users jump around from device to device each day and often use more than one browser.
  • Third-party cookies don’t work in mobile apps, but the average person spends 2 hours and 57 minutes per day in apps, according to eMarketer.
  • Privacy regulations that address cookies use have emerged like the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA).

What does this mean for marketers? That our old reliable friend email becomes that much more vital as a unique identifier.

Long Live Email

Email is a perfect supplement for cookies and a media channel that has never had to rely on third-party cookies to be fully functional.

Marketers utilize email because it's a universal identifier that transcends all channels.  Email addresses are common data points in identity graphs, and can be used as a unique identifier to match and target audiences. Consent based identity resolution consortiums for example use personally identifiable information like email as a linkage to other advertising mediums. 

Browser fingerprinting, while not a new technique, also can be combined with email to increase the accuracy of identification. If you’re not familiar with browser fingerprinting, it's a method that websites use to gather information about your browser, operating systems, active settings such as plugins, your time zone, and much more.

These data points might seem like it wouldn’t be enough information to identify one single person, but according to “there's a significantly small chance for another user to have 100% matching browser information. Panopticlick found that only 1 in 286,777 other browsers will share the same fingerprint as another user”. The accuracy improves even more when combined with email.

Let those cookies crumble! Who said email was dead? This is just another example of why email continues to be king.