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Make your first-party data work for you in advertising – Implementing identity solutions using cloud

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The recent debates on digital privacy and several decisions by government and influential corporations have brought to focus how customer data is collected and used by companies. The broad trend is towards more transparency for users as to how their data is utilized and shared. Generally, users have shown more willingness to share data with the platforms they use. The direct use of that data for personalization and better engagement is a win-win situation for both parties. Such a scenario shifts the onus to the first-party platforms to use their consumer data judiciously, and any enrichment or extension of that data is only allowed with proper consent in place. This implies that the publishers have control over providing a meaningful and personalized advertising experience for their customers. Identity solutions built custom or otherwise are vital tools for publishers in such scenarios.

What are identity solutions?

Consumers can have multiple touchpoints with media companies. The service is accessed through a variety of devices, customer service interactions, social media interactions, content consumption, etc. Identity solutions assist in tying these various interactions together around a single user. Sometimes the connections between these interactions are obvious, such as a consumer’s ID and identity are easily established in this case. It isn’t always the case. Identity solutions are built around well-established databases, such as graph databases, which make indexing and searching easier.  Moreover, it necessitates the execution of specialized algorithms, such as the connected component algorithm, which generates a consistent virtual ID for a user.

End-to-end identity solutions include data collection from various sources and the creation of an identity database. This identity database serves as a downstream reference for developing multi-tiered use cases that provide end-user personalization.

Identity Graph Use Cases in Advertising

Identity serves as the foundation for the development of numerous use cases. It is extremely useful in maintaining a low latency profiling database that can be used to feed downstream solutions.

  1. Audience segments: Instead of third parties, publishers can create customer segments themselves using an identity solution. Business rules set up for different segments help in the classification of audiences. These audience segments get auto updated as they tend to change over a period.
  2. Personalization Engine: The identity graph captures the actions of users, with respect to interests and preferences not only explicitly but also implicitly. Since all actions are in one place, giving a 360-view, the personalization engine can feed off this information.
  3. Creative optimization: Not everybody gets the same advertisement as the information available about the history of the user enables advertisers to show personalized creatives.
  4. Brand safety: If the content being consumed does not match the ad shown, the reputation of the brand can be impacted. An identity graph can provide supplementary information regarding user preferences that can protect the brand.
  5. Campaign Analytics: The performance of campaigns can be measured against audience segments. These are key metrics on which advertising is bought and sold.


Why cloud for Identity Graph implementations?

Identity solutions map and unify billions of relationships and query customer data with millisecond latency. There are many purpose-built cloud databases made for identity solutions, for example: AWS Neptune, Neo4j, etc. Cloud solutions reduce the total cost of ownership by storing and querying billions of nodes and edges, with lower latency and lower costs for storage compared to other models. Usually, these solutions are quick to deploy and can be up and running without taking much time.


It has become imperative for media publishers to develop identity management solutions of their own as they ensure that first-party data is fully consolidated. Identity solutions can not only provide personalization for the publisher’s users, but also serve as data rooms for their advertisers. These solutions help publishers meet the privacy rules and also provide their users all the relevant content they require, including advertising.

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