Autotrader Develops Targeting Around Apple's, Google's Decision To No Longer Support Cookies

Autotrader is sitting pretty following Google’s announcement that it will phase out support for third-party cookies in Chrome within the next two years.

The company, which seems to have created a closed-loop data system, has begun building out identity graphs and consumer profile insights by leveraging first-party and third-party data, Kevin LeSage, director of digital marketing at Autotrader, a Cox Automotive company, told Search Marketing Daily.

The first-party data is owned by Cox companies like Autotrader, and Kelley Blue Book, he said, along with vAuto, NextGear Capital, and a host of global businesses and brands serving auto dealers, manufacturers and financial institutions.

The insights are available to any Cox business unit. The project has been in the works for two years, but during the past eight months developed dedicated data teams across Cox Automotive. A tag embedded in each property owned by Cox allows marketers to map consumers on their journey.



When asked about the number of available attributes, LeSage couldn't provide a specific number, but said the list of insights filled more than 1,600 pages. He once worked as the product manager when the company initially built out this division. 

Autotrader also combines the first-party data with third-party data. “The third-party consumer data has attributes like credit scores, marital status, whether or not he has kids and if they are male or female,” LeSage said. “Some of the third-party data aggregators we work with track more than 300 million Americans and process more than one trillion transactions weekly,” he said.

Estimating the number, LeSage said Autotrader built out customer profile insights for 38 million households in the last 90 days. That data will allow Autotrader and its network of companies to personalize advertisements and marketing to millions of consumers.

LeSage provided a real-life example that could allow brands to specifically target consumers with a free gift. “My wife is pregnant with our second child,” he said. “Her car is just too small for two dogs and two car seats. So she went to Kelley Blue Book to see the worth of her car. Then we decided to get a used, newer model within a 50-mile radius.”

LeSage said his wife became an “in-market” shopper. Knowing the household is looking for a newer, used car ups the ante in personalization, allowing the manufacturer or brand to target the household, and other like them, with a specific offer such as a free baby seat with the purchase of the car.

“It’s all privacy compliant,” he said. “You also need to stay in touch with the privacy changes from each company such as Google and Apple. And we’re no longer reliant on one cookie.”

The ability to track cookies for 30 days and target consumers with messages continue to quickly fade, LeSage said, because Apple, Google and Facebook have begun implementing some sort of intelligent tracking prevention (ITP).

1 comment about "Autotrader Develops Targeting Around Apple's, Google's Decision To No Longer Support Cookies".
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  1. Robin Caller from LOLA GROVE, January 20, 2020 at 5:17 p.m.

    I'd dearly love to see the clear explanation of the consents permissions abd purposes Cox presents to use this data. If ordinary people can understand it, it must be a very skillful piece of copy, and many other publishers will be interested in following suit. Obtaining informed consent from the car buying public is a big ask when you're stitching data together across properties thru don't even know are connected. I always worry when someone says that "it's all privacy compliant".... Are they marking their own homework? That's fine, and normally results in very good marks.... Until exam time! 

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