​Identity 2020 – The Future of Addressable Digital Advertising

August 19, 2020

On Tuesday, August 18th, The Trade Desk Co-Founders Jeff Green and Dave Pickles joined IndexExchange CEO, Andrew Casale, and Magnite CTO, Tom Kershaw, for a discussion regarding the future of identity in digital advertising. The session was hosted by AdWeek, and moderated by AdWeek reporter, Ronan Shields, and The Trade Desk CRO, Tim Sims.

The conversation was prompted by Google’s proposal to eliminate 3rd party cookies by 2021, and The Trade Desk’s initiative to build on the IAB’s roadmap and create a new, better alternative to cookie technology.

The Value Exchange of the Internet

“There is a core value exchange of the internet,” said Green at the outset. “Users see relevant ads in return for free content…and without relevance, the effectiveness of ads will drop, CPM’s will drop, publishers will struggle, and it will be a huge hit to professions like journalism.”

Kershaw reiterated his point and outlined how important it is that this value exchange is understood by consumers experiencing free content on the open internet. “We’ve done a horrible job of explaining how the internet works to the consumer,” he said. “We need one system that explains everything, including connected television.”

Casale underscored what’s at stake for publishers in this debate. “When you remove the signal, we see a significant reduction in ad spend,” he said.

Unified OpenID 2.0

In proposing an upgrade to cookies that provides the consumer with more control while preserving the value of relevant advertising for advertisers and publishers, Green outlined four key elements of Unified OpenID 2.0:

“This has been designed from the consumer’s perspective,” said Pickles, highlighting the importance of consumer control. “This has to be an upgrade for them, and for everyone.”

The Collaboration Imperative

All the panelists focused on the need for the industry to collaborate on this new approach, even if they will compete on services and value they’ll build based on this solution.

“There’s no way to scale the internet without collaboration,” said Kershaw. “It’s not important that we work together, it’s imperative.”

“Solving this problem is not where we should be looking for competitive advantage,” added Casale. “This is the wrong problem to do that on…the stakes are too high.”

Speaking of the momentum behind this proposal, Green highlighted the universally positive feedback from advertisers and publishers, and Pickles focused on the speed with which The Trade Desk is collaborating with the industry to get the beta solution in the hands of industry participants.

“We are working together to go as fast as we can and get a proof of concept in front of everyone as soon as possible,” he said.

Click here to watch the full webinar.