Media buying types have seen the privacy screws tightened over the last couple years. First, it was GDPR and now the the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) is on the horizon.
While a nice summary can be found here, Californians will have the right to:
- know what personal information is being collected about them
- know whether their personal information is sold or disclosed and to whom
- say no to the sale of personal information
- access their personal information
- equal service and price, even if they exercise their privacy rights
And because California represents a huge percentage of US online users, and that trying to geo-target tech privacy updates would be such a royal pain, you can expect companies to comply with the law nationwide.
You can hear the audible groans of media buyers everywhere. One more thing to worry about. How am I supposed to buy media within the CCPA guidelines? It’s like buying with one hand tied behind my back?
The counterarguments for media buyers “needing” this data
- The data is largely flawed. Visit the Oracle Data Cloud Registry and see for yourself. Here are some things wrong in my profile:
- Self-declared geography of Evanston (I’ve never been there. I’m sure it’s nice)
- Undergraduate degree (True, I guess. Though I have a graduate degree)
- An elderly parent in my household (I sure hope not – they’d be seriously neglected if this were true!)
- I reside in 5 (!) income brackets.
- Renter (I’ve owned a home for 12 years)
- There are other ways to reach eyeballs in media without prying into our targets’ personal data.
Older forms of targeting are starting to be dusted off. I can’t think of a marketer who thinks it’s a misuse of advertising dollars to show an ad when the user is browsing for something similar. Hell, that’s exactly what search engine marketing is and that is a mainstay on media plans – for good reason.
One important side note in defense of audience targeting – media buyers need the option to exclude individual audience to keep their companies or clients compliant with laws. E.G. blocking viewers likely under 21 years old from alcohol advertising.
- Just because we have the ability to target on a user level, does not mean we should
Browsing down a list of personality characteristics and demographic data is certainly the easiest way to get an audience buy rolling. It takes a minimal amount of effort and puts the onus on the technology partners and DSPs to deliver on the promise of delivering that audience. It has also taken much of the onus off the media planner herself. Why pay a premium for this role when the buyer does the minimal effort within the planning tool?
No wonder clients are bypassing agencies and their media-buying talent to create a direct relationship with the tech partners. Perhaps media buyers need challenges like buying media within CCPA guidelines to drive up their fading value.