#238: Cookies Causing Chaos - with Epsilon's Elliott Clayton (Short Summary Show)

In January 2020, Google announced that it would no longer support third-party cookies for users of the Chrome browser.

What sounded like a massive challenge for marketers who’ve relied on them for many years, may in fact result in incredible growth and opportunity for loyalty marketers.

In today’s short summary episode of Let’s Talk Loyalty, we review our conversation on this huge topic with Elliott ClaytonSenior Vice President of Media for Epsilon in the UK.

Elliott explained why it is such an exciting time to work in loyalty marketing, and how loyalty marketers can help their brands embrace the cookie-less future.

Show Notes:
  1. Epsilon
  2. Elliott Clayton
  3. #92: The Increasing Importance of Loyalty in a Changing Media Landscape with Epsilon

Audio Transcript

Welcome to Let’s Talk Loyalty, an industry podcast for loyalty marketing professionals. I’m your host, Paula Thomas. And if you work in loyalty marketing, join me every week to learn the latest ideas from loyalty specialists around the world.


This show is brought to you by The Loyalty and Awards Conference, the leading annual event for loyalty professionals in the travel industry. Make sure to join us this year from the 10th to the 12th of October in Madrid. For the perfect mix of inspiring content and exciting awards. Check out loyaltyandawards.com for more information and to register.


Hello and welcome to this week’s short episode of Let’s Talk Loyalty today. I’m looking back to my conversation in spring of 2021 with Elliot Clayton from Epsilon in the UK. In that episode, it was the very first time that I realized the dramatic changes that were unfolding with Google finally, committing to discontinue its use of third-party data and cookies on its Chrome web browser.


Now we’ve talked about it, a huge amount of the show ever since then, and I’m sure you’ve heard loads on the topic. It really is hugely important for us as loyalty marketers with the Chrome browser, such an important source of data capture in our digital world. Now the exact date of when this will happen has changed a couple of times, but once it does every market here worldwide is likely to be affected.


The change comes amidst to competing forces. Firstly customers really do like personalization or even hyper-personalization as Elliot calls it, they want insights, relevance, and the personal touch in the message they receive from the brands they like to buy from. On the other hand, we also value our privacy. None of us likes being tracked without consent. So that makes it really difficult to gather data in an ethical way that doesn’t affect customers yet still collects the data they need to give them the positive experience that’s available with hyper-personalization.


Elliot explained that actually cookies were really never the best tool for brands to be using anyway. Actually, outside of the consent and transparency issues, they don’t really do a great job as they were intended to do. Instead. Elliot framed the conversation around these changes, being a huge opportunity for us brands to build our data via our loyalty program. And as you know, this has come up time and time again has a huge opportunity for everyone listening to this show since this first conversation back in early 2021.


Loyalty programs, I think we all agree are the perfect tool for a brand to use, to collect customer data. As those members see a transparent value exchange for giving their data, then directly receiving something in return. And of course, it allows the brand to own the customer relationship, to capture the data in a way that customers really feel comfortable with. And then we can provide that personalized experience, all focused on increasing company, revenues and profits. So for us as an industry, the impact of this decision from Google, as well as the increase in consumer protection from legislations, such as GDP or in Europe, I really think now is the perfect storm for everyone working in loyalty and marketing when it comes to protecting consumer privacy. 


So that’s all I wanted to say in this short summary. What I’d love is if you check out the full conversation, which is available quite simply on letstalkloyalty.com/ 92. Then our show tomorrow brings back an interview from Hong Kong’s leading loyalty program, which is super interesting.


Then on Thursday, we have another show from Asia when we’re meeting with Dan Cantorna, from our friend in Collinson to hear some of his insights and perspectives as head of data analytics and technology for the Asia Pacific region. Thanks for listing guys. 


This show is sponsored by The Wise Marketer. The world’s most popular source of loyalty marketing news, insights, and research. The Wise Marketer also offers loyalty marketing training through its Loyalty Academy, which is already certified over 245 executives in 27 countries as certified loyalty marketing professionals. For more information, check out thewisemarketer.com and loyaltyacademy.org.


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