Our Guide to Healthcare Advertising in the Cookieless Future

For years now, one of the most pressing topics in the advertising industry has been preparing for the cookieless future. Browsers like Apple’s Safari and Mozilla’s Firefox deprecated third-party cookies years ago. After extending its deadline multiple Google is sticking with its commitment to do the same in Chrome in 2024.

Early next year, Google plans to disable third-party cookies for 1% of Chrome users, migrating them to Privacy Sandbox. They will be completely deprecated during the second half of the year. While that may seem like a long time from now, what many people don’t realize is that we’re already living in the cookieless present.

We partnered with ID5 on an exclusive guide to help healthcare marketers start their cookieless migration journey. Here’s an overview of what you should know about going cookieless.

1. A cookieless future does not signify the end of advertising as we know it.

Chrome has 47% of browser market share in the U.S. Once Google deprecates third-party cookies, they will be missing from the vast majority of Internet browsing. While these changes are prompting healthcare marketers to take a closer look at their digital advertising strategies, it’s important for us to acknowledge what will remain the same.

For example, addressable advertising is still possible with or without third-party cookies. You can still plan and activate healthcare provider (HCP) and patient campaigns using your own first-party data, and publishers can still identify returning users with their third-party cookies. Additionally, connected TV (CTV) is one of the more recent channels to emerge as a cookieless advertising solution.

2. Expect changes around publishers, inventory, and campaign performance.

When we talk about going cookieless, what often comes to mind first is how our own methods of advertising will be impacted. In a cookieless future, many aspects of the advertising ecosystem will evolve.

We’ll see how inventory will consolidate around reputable publishers as first-party data becomes more valuable. Audience-based CPMs will lure publishers to innovate and drive more value, increasing addressable inventory, and that uptick in quality will have a positive impact on campaign performance. What this means for healthcare marketers is that we’ll be better able to reach high-quality HCP and patient audiences, ultimately improving patient outcomes.

3. For a seamless transition, give yourself a timeframe of six months to one year.

In order to adequately prepare for a cookieless future, there are a number of key steps involved, each of which can take a minimum of 1-2 months to complete. Some steps can take even more time depending on the type of healthcare audience you want to reach.

Though we still have two years to go, it’s never too early to start planning for the five phases of your cookieless migration journey. These include:

  1. Starting your impact assessment, in which you’ll evaluate your dependency on third-party cookies.
  2. Evaluating and integrating first-party universal identifiers, to determine what privacy-compliant solutions are available to you.
  3. Reviewing your ad tech vendor’s and partners’ compliance, to understand whether your ad tech partners are prepared to support you in the cookieless future.
  4. Running a test campaign with cookieless traffic in Safari and Firefox.
  5. Adapting your KPI and media performance dashboards by incorporating first-party universal identifiers in your analysis.

For timelines and step-by-step instructions on how to prepare to go cookieless, download Transition to a Cookieless Future: A Guide for Healthcare Marketers.

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