Identity Resolution In An Ad World Constantly Changing: Report

Improving the return on investment and effectiveness of marketing, customer satisfaction, and privacy safeguards to reduce compliance or regulatory risk are the top three objectives for the next 12 months, according to the companies participating in a study released Monday.

The study, commissioned by identity-resolution company Tapad and conducted by Forrester Consulting between March 2021 and April 2021, focuses on the top goals that marketers are working toward this year when it comes to data and identity resolution.

About 314 marketers at brands and agencies responded. The survey reveals why more mature identity programs correlate to how brands achieve their key objectives, even in a difficult year. 

Brands struggle with the core capabilities of identity resolution, but putting in the hard work to improve their capabilities will deliver near-term business benefits and will future-proof marketing strategies as they enter a period of upheaval.



When asked a series of questions related to data and marketing functions, about 40% agree and 33% completely agree that marketing functions have a higher level of strategic importance within brands than in the past.

  • About 40% agree and 32% completely agree that customers expect brands to deliver relevant, personalized experiences in nearly real-time
  • About 35% agree and 35% completely agree that consumer data is the lifeblood of brands’ marketing strategies
  • Nearly half -- 47% -- said they agree vs 22% completely agree that customers are increasingly aware of how their customer data is being used by brands

Survey respondents also reported that adopting identity-resolution strategies to create more powerful customer experiences, and more sophisticated and ethical data collection and management capabilities, can help them respond to the multiple simultaneous changes.

Two-thirds of respondents stated that their organizations aim to use identity resolution to help improve customer trust and implement more ethical data collection and use practices, while about 60% believed it will point the way to more effective personalization and data-management practices.

More than half of marketers look to identity-resolution strategies to power consistent omnichannel customer engagement, improve targeting, and get ready for regulatory and other customer data restrictions. In this way, identity resolution plays a critical role in the future of customer data-driven marketing strategies.

The top challenges that organization say they have experienced when building or executing identity resolution include capturing and integrating different forms of customer data such as behavioral, transactional, preference, and compliance. Others include integrating multiple new identifiers into an accurate and complete view of the customer, ensuring proper precision or accuracy of customer data within the program, managing complex platforms, and ensuring compliance with regulatory mandates and customer preferences.

Recommendations from the data suggest identifying the impact of data deprecation on the business, building an identity-resolution roadmap and factor in data disruption, choosing the solution that makes the most sense for the business, and continuously assessing the company's strategy and partners.


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