Ossie Bayram is UK Country Director at mobile advertising company Ogury. We caught up with Ossie to talk about all things adtech, including privacy, personified advertising, and ad fraud.

You’ve previously talked about a “wholesale reinvention of the advertising industry” – what do you mean by this?

“The adtech industry is currently at a crossroads. To survive, players must make the correct choice between ignoring the inevitable and clinging to disappearing advertising identifiers, or shifting towards a more promising cookieless and ID-less model.

“As it goes, ad tracking has most definitely become socially unacceptable, and more and more users are declining to have their digital lives tracked in any way. For digital advertising to remain aligned with its mission to enable brands to better understand and connect with their audience, the industry must now find a future-proof technology that is fully independent of advertising identifiers.”

What trends might come to the forefront for the digital ad industry in the next 12 months?

“Over the next 12 months, cookies and IDs will disappear from adtech ecosystems. However, advertisers still have limited awareness of alternative options.

A global survey we conducted recently on 1,000 major brand and media agency executives actually found that 60% of respondents believe user tracking to be a source of reputational risk for brands, and 56% of them think cookies and IDs represent a threat to user privacy. What is surprising from this survey is that 41% of advertisers are only moderately, if not at all, familiar with targeting methods other than cookies or IDs. This clearly reflects that innovative cookieless technology companies must evangelize their models, which can be challenging for the industry to grasp. In particular, it can be easy for advertisers to get confused by new solutions that claim to be cookieless but in reality, are clinging to identifiers.

“Contextual and semantic targeting don’t know users’ interests. While it goes further, cohort-based advertising is an invasive solution as it collects data without users being fully aware of it to analyse their behaviour and identify general topics. And unified IDs lack the cookies’ scalability since they are siloed, can’t be interoperable, and require user consent – which is more and more difficult to get.”

How can brands navigate current challenges in digital advertising?

“One way of doing this requires moving away from personalised advertising. Rather than leveraging users’ identities, brands should utilise targeting technologies which are based on personas and the destinations where these personas consume content instead of the individual users themselves. This is what we call personified advertising.

“In stark contrast with personalisation, personified advertising stays clear from users’ online behaviour. It takes the focus from a user-centric to a placement-centric approach, to look at the destinations where personas might access their content – at scale. It gives brands actionable insights, allowing them to effectively reach their consumers while respecting their privacy.”

What’s next for Ogury and your role?

“The fourth wave of digital advertising is here. It is centred around ID-less and cookieless advertising, and will be unstoppable. At Ogury, we consider moving away from user-centric advertising as an exciting opportunity because it’s an issue that impacts the whole industry. Within this shifting ecosystem, personified advertising is the solution the industry has been looking for. It enables advertisers to target personas instead of people and does not rely on someone’s identity. With cookieless and ID-less advertising already our day-to-day reality, personified advertising will define, and dare I say lead, the next phase of digital advertising.”