Identity has been a hot topic for a while now in the ad tech world. While state-triggered regulations (GDPR in EU, CCPA in CA, etc.) have made user consent the king, the industry itself has also prioritized user consent, and that has made first-party data much more important than ever before.
Let’s take the example of Apple’s AppTrackingTransparency (ATT) framework to understand this a bit more. The framework enforces the idea that if a user has not consented to be shown a personalized ad, there is no way – be it through IDFA, hashed email, hashed phone number, IP address, etc. – to identify and target an individual user. But users who have consented are not only associated with an IDFA but also with a lot of other first-party signals (like hashed email, hashed phone number, IP address, etc.) that can be used to securely show them the most relevant ads. This is where the Universal IDs (or UIDs) come in.
UIDs are standardized identifiers that recognize users and user identities across different platforms. UIDs enable ad tech agencies and marketers to target the right users with the right advertisements at the right time across platforms and devices.
UID partners create encoded UIDs from first-party signals available on the supply (Publisher/SSP) side and pass them upstream to the demand (Advertiser/DSP) side. The demand side then decodes these UIDs (with keys/token IDs received from their respective buy-side UID partners) and uses them along with mobile advertising IDs and other signals for media buying. Identity resolution has gained more prominence in the desktop world due to the depreciation of cookies. While universal IDs have been often associated as a replacement of cookies in the desktop world, they have gained a lot of traction in the in-app world too and are now being looked upon as an alternative to mobile advertising identifiers like IDFA by global brands.
Significance of Universal IDs for Publishers
Addressable Audiences – UIDs enable buyers to recognize a publisher’s audience and bid more on its inventory, in order to improve campaign performance. Thus, publishers partnered with Universal ID partners will have a higher fill rate.
Scalable Revenue – Authenticated user information drives deterministic ad matching that outperforms older models based on probabilities. Thus, a UID-based system will be able to command higher eCPMs for a publisher’s identity-rich inventory.
Omnichannel Targeting – The UID partner unifies siloed first-party data under a single user/customer view, which is persistent and valid across many channels and acts as a one-stop solution for publishers looking to monetize their users across channels (mobile web/desktop/in-app/CTV).
In a nutshell, these UIDs supercharge consented inventory, making it highly monetizable for the publisher and super valuable for the advertiser.
Now, while advertisers use one/many UIDs based on their needs (e.g. connecting their CRM data to UIDs), demand-side platforms (DSPs) integrate with different UID partners to cater to the various advertisers using their platforms. Hence, from a monetization and cost/effort standpoint, this means publishers should work with multiple UID partners to provide the multitude of buyers with acceptable identifier-based solutions.
Collaborating with multiple UID partners will, however, include multiple integrations, meaning legal contracts per each UID partner, along with deployment, activation and post-activation workflows for each one, which would be time-consuming and operationally challenging for any individual publisher. To solve for this, InMobi has built a one-stop solution for in-app publishers, called UnifID, to help them seamlessly integrate with multiple Universal ID partners with the click of a button. Moreover, UnifID is an open platform solution, which means that publishers can pass these UIDs to external ad tech ecosystem partners. Stay tuned to hear more about this!
In the meantime, if you have any questions on UIDs or would like to know more about UnifID, please reach out to your dedicated Customer Success Manager or to the Product Marketing Team at InMobi.