Zero-Party Data Platform Jebbit Lands $70 Million Investment

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It pays to be in the right place at the right time. With less than a year to go before Google officially phases out third-party cookies from Chrome and more brands searching for viable solutions to personalize digital campaigns, a startup called Jebbit has stepped into the limelight.

Jebbit recently announced a $70 million strategic growth investment from Vista Equity Partners, a global investment firm focused on enterprise software, data, and technology-enabled businesses. Jebbit will use the capital to scale and accelerate its mission to help brands deliver personalized digital experiences that collect data in a privacy-friendly way.

Many see zero-party data as the key to brand marketing in a future without cookies. It’s one of a handful of new key privacy assets beginning to emerge, as brands look at how they can stay relevant and increase the effectiveness of their targeting strategies without relying on third-party cookies.

According to a survey by CMO Club, 77% of chief marketing officers at B2B and B2C organizations are investing more in zero-party data sources to acquire and retain customers. Eighty-four percent of respondents in CMO Club’s survey said they are moving away from data sources with privacy concerns — such as third-party data — to data sources that accommodate more stringent privacy requirements.

For Jebbit, the timing couldn’t be better. This latest round of investment comes after a banner year for the company, which doubled its revenue and inked partnerships with major brands like L’Oreal, ASICS, e.l.f., Lush Cosmetics, and Samsonite. 

Jebbit CEO Tom Colburn sees Vista’s investment as validation for the zero-party data industry, given the impact that global privacy changes had on the effectiveness of mainstream social advertising platforms in 2021.

“The brands that are scaling their ZPD quickly are the ones taking an evergreen approach for key moments along the path to purchase. For example, you can create an onsite product match quiz to greet and guide every user; a personality quiz about your preferences as the first touch in an email welcome series; a social media education or assessment experience that captures leads,” says Colburn. “These interactive touch points have all proven to provide a much better experience and consistently beat performance benchmarks at every stage of the journey from awareness through to conversion.”

Nearly every consumer-facing brand has either become a direct-to-consumer brand or will need to become one to survive in the coming years, Colburn says. The collecting, buying, and selling of consumer data behind closed doors is over, thanks in large part to evolving privacy regulations and increasing awareness on the part of consumers.

The Jebbit platform allows brands to create experiences that capture their own zero-party data, rather than aggregating data from external sources. That data is the brand’s alone, making the zero-party approach less about supporting a specific campaign and more about helping consumers at every stage of the journey. Jebbit works on an opt-in basis, with consumers deciding who, when, and how much information they will provide.

“Zero-party data is a form of first-party data that is willingly and explicitly shared by the consumer to the brand. It increases transparency and trust because the consumer understands that they are providing their information directly to the brand,” Colburn says. “Think about the holidays and how many purchases are made for someone else but yet the onslaught of retargeting and endless emails begin. If the brand had the context that it was a gift and the buyer has no interest in the brand, it saves them both time and money, not to mention doesn’t annoy the consumer.”

With additional privacy changes from Apple and Google on the horizon, Colburn expects third-party data solutions to recede into the background in the coming year. He also anticipates seeing personalization at scale become a reality as more brands create better retargeting and multi-touch programs based on what they’ve learned about their consumers.

“What will be exciting to watch will be the rise of brands starting to put their zero-party data into action — using that data to build audiences in social media,” he says.

​​Stephanie Miles is a senior editor at Street Fight.

Stephanie Miles is a journalist who covers personal finance, technology, and real estate. As Street Fight’s senior editor, she is particularly interested in how local merchants and national brands are utilizing hyperlocal technology to reach consumers. She has written for FHM, the Daily News, Working World, Gawker, Cityfile, and Recessionwire.