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18 - 19 September 2024
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18 - 19 September 2024
ExCeL London

Press Releases

26 Jul 2023

Are CMOs prepared for the 'cookieless world'?

Are CMOs prepared for the 'cookieless world'?
Research from Relay42 highlights the 'cookieless' technologies that brands are actively researching
Nearly 72% of CMOs around the world consider the loss of third-party cookies a major challenge for businesses, revealing the urgent need for radical changes in acquisition and retention strategies, according to a global survey issued today by Relay42, a global enterprise Customer Data Platform. The survey was conducted by London Research in March and April 2023 and polled 319 senior marketers from various industries.

New research from Customer Data Platform vendor Relay42 reveals that 72% of CMOs recognize the need for radical changes to acquisition and retention strategies when third-party cookies are removed from Google Chrome in 2024, while CDP-equipped brands are 7X more likely than non-CDP users to be positive about the change.

Key findings:

  • 319 marketing leaders from across the globe recognize the urgency to adapt to the impending deprecation of third-party cookies in Google Chrome. 

  • Almost three-quarters (72%) of respondents say the loss of the third-party cookie poses a major challenge for their businesses. 

  • 55% of brands are at risk of losing valuable data as the transition to GA4 remains incomplete. 
  • Organizations using a Customer Data Platform (CDP) are 7X more likely to see the shift away from third-party cookies as positive than those without (30% vs 4%).
  • There's a strong correlation between CDP usage and digital marketing maturity. CDP users are six times more likely to be leveraging AI/machine learning than non-CDP users and twice as likely to be using multi-touch attribution. 

Brands ill-prepared or the Cookieless World

Despite the imminent deprecation of third-party cookies by Google in its Chrome browser in 2024, a recent study by Relay42 of 319 CMOs has highlighted that brands are yet to fully understand the necessary changes they need to make to their digital marketing solutions.

The research suggests that there is no single technology or solution that can directly replace third-party cookies. Instead, the future will involve integrating multiple solutions. The top five solutions that brands are either ‘already using' or ‘starting to explore' are GA4 (70%), contextual advertising (66%), data clean rooms (64%), first-party data unification (63%), and identity management (61%). Perhaps the most striking result comes from 27% of respondents who have ‘no idea' about Google's Privacy Sandbox, Google's umbrella for various post-cookie acquisition tools.

CDP-equiped brands face the future with assurance 

Among CDP users, 69% believe that the demise of third-party cookies will have a positive impact on their marketing. Furthermore, CDP users are seven times more likely than non-users to anticipate a significant positive impact (30% vs. 4%). In contrast, over half (59%) of non-CDP users expect a negative impact.

Tomas Salfischberger, CEO & Founder at Relay42 comments on the results: “It's really encouraging to see that the majority of senior marketers understand the necessity to make the shift towards first-party data. Unsurprisingly, businesses that have already made that investment via a Customer Data Platform (CDP) are much more prepared for the transition and see the change as having a positive influence on their business. At Relay42, we are committed to guiding our customers in navigating these changes and helping them harness the potential of their customer data to thrive in a cookieless world.” 

Strong correlation between CDP users and digital marketing maturity

The report also uncovers a strong correlation between CDP users and digital maturity. Companies equipped with CDPs demonstrate higher digital marketing skills and capabilities. CDP users are six times more likely to leverage AI and machine learning, four times more likely to have integrated Adtech and Martech, and twenty times more likely to have first-and-zero-party data integration across owned and paid channels.

To help marketers assess their own organizational capabilities, the survey team developed a Digital Maturity Model, covering the five key areas of digital marketing – Customer Insight, Campaign Planning, Activation – Paid, Activation – Owned, and Measurement and Attribution. Data from the survey reveals that CDP users demonstrate a higher maturity across all five areas than non-CDP users. 

"The deprecation of third-party cookies is a hugely significant sea-change for marketing which companies typically need to do more to prepare themselves for", says Linus Gregoriadis, Co-Founder and Director, of London Research who conducted the survey for Relay42.  "The onus is falling on CMOs to make sure that they are steering their marketing strategies in the right direction. This research highlights the threat for brands but also focuses on the opportunity for companies that can tackle the challenges. The Digital Marketing Maturity Model is a great starting point for marketers looking to ensure their marketing is going to be fit for purpose. The report also shows that companies with customer data platforms are generally in a much stronger position than those who are yet to adopt this technology."

Relay42 will be exhibiting at the Technology For Marketing show at London Excel on 27-28 September (Stand C55), where marketers can get demos of the Relay42 Customer Data Platform and discuss their challenges as they start to plan strategies to thrive in a 'cookieless world'.

To download a copy of the full report, visit

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