More Advertisers Explore Opportunities in Logged-In Media
Data privacy and online anonymity are layered into nearly every major martech project today, but a new survey of advertisers from the email based marketing technology company LiveIntent questions whether that approach is what consumers or advertisers actually want. Deep in the findings presented in LiveIntent’s 2023 Retail Media Playbook is this: Two-thirds of advertisers (66%) favor logged-in media over the more anonymous open web. Logged-in environments are deemed “very important.”
Advertisers appear to be following the lead of consumers, many of whom have grown frustrated by the downsides of the privacy-first, privacy-always landscape.
As a result, 3-in-4 advertisers in LiveIntent’s survey (74%) say they plan to increase their investment in retailers’ logged-in media channels compared to the previous year.
“It’s true, consumers want privacy, but they don’t want an inconvenient internet that’s impenetrable for new voices,” says LiveIntent Chief of Staff Adam Berkowitz. “However, logged-in media — like the email channel — is actually fairly clear to the vox populi.”
Email has traditionally been one of the most adherent digital channels when it comes to conforming to people’s preferences. Berkowitz says CAN-SPAM is strict, and it’s nearly two decades old, but a significant part of the reason why email remains consistent as the best performing channel year after year is because consumers understand the value exchange and what they’re signing up for, and how to unsubscribe.
“That clear permissioning builds trust, and that clear trust helps advertiser performance, which sustains publishers, like retailers who have strong email lists,” Berkowitz says. “Email is opt-in: the consumer raises their hand and asks for content. They receive emails from the brand, knowing they signed up to do so. Email is a logged-in channel where the value proposition is clear. When third-party advertisers are able to run advertising campaigns inside of these emails from a retailer to their readership, they are able to achieve reaching a logged-in audience in a channel that consumers understand.”
Enhancing Retail Media Value
Retail media ad spend in the U.S. could pass $51 billion this year, if projections from firms like eMarketer prove accurate. With that in mind, LiveIntent analysts surveyed more than 200 marketers on retail media adoption and performance, potential value of retail media networks, first-party data and retail media, and the opportunity to utilize logged-in media channels, such as social and email, to enhance retail media value. They found that 52% of marketers and advertisers anticipate a “slight increase” in dollars to retailer’s logged-in media, while 32% of respondents expected a “significant increase.” Just 15% of respondents in LiveIntent’s survey believed dollars to retailer’s logged-in media would remain the same.
“This year, we’ll see ‘dipping the toes,’ which in our industry often means testing the waters with smaller campaigns, and scaling as success is either ‘correlated’ or directly attributable. Those channels that are able to offer better measurement opportunities across device, channel, platform, and in person are those that will likely see the most momentum,” Berkowitz says. “That means that channels that produce data that can be given back to the advertisers and the retailer and is interoperable and will be those channels with the most momentum.”
Going forward, the biggest opportunities for advertisers in logged-in media channels could be in precise targeting, where advertisers use first-party data to target consumers more accurately, and measurability. Logged-in media channels generally offer highly-measurable results, allowing advertisers to assess campaign effectiveness in nearly real-time.
“The coming era will be the biggest sea change in advertising since digital. The opportunity to reach known people across devices, channels and platforms will decrease, so the environments that provide for this will become more of a commodity,” Berkowitz says. “Any publisher, retailer or not, who has built a logged-in audience is in a position to control their destiny. But it means that publishers must come up with a value proposition strong enough to get first-party permissions from a subscriber, and it means advertisers must prioritize and learn how to make logged-in inventory a part and parcel of their marketing muscles.”