Welcome to The Martech Weekly, where every week I review some of the most interesting ideas, research, and latest news. I look to where the industry is going and what you should be paying attention to.
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It’s that time of year, folks. Every analyst, content marketer, consultancy and their dog pulls out their 2024 predictions for marketing and tech, which usually turns into an entertaining exercise of posturing for clicks and pretending for a hot minute that any of us knows what the future brings.
That’s why, for the first time, TMW is doing its own forecasting for what to expect in 2024. I think it’s worth wading into this especially strange type of online content for TMW; I want to give you a look into what I’m expecting this coming year – that’s why they’re called trajectories, not predictions. Predictions are for the weird fortune tellers, horoscopes, and people who blame having a bad day on “Mercury is in retrograde.”
But trajectories are more of a reflection of how the Martech industry changed this year and what we can learn from how they might change in the future. So, strap yourself in: over the next three Sundays of the holiday break, I’m going to give them to you.
The three main trajectories for 2024:
- Customer identity is going to get messy
- Generative AI will start to spiral
- Cloud platforms will try and fail to get into Martech
Let’s dive into our first one: Customer identity is going to get messy
The first thing you need to know about this trajectory is that we’re not entirely sure if Google will back out of cookie deprecation this coming year. And a lot of what I’m about to say here relies on that being true. If they end up pulling the trigger like they promised to, there is going to be a lot of marketers looking for new ways to drive growth without third-party cookies, along with the destruction of a lot of third-party-centric technology – including Google’s sprawling Adtech network.
A March 2023 Adobe study estimates that 75% of marketers still rely heavily on third-party cookies, with 64% planning to increase their spending on cookie-based advertising this year. Marketers are still using third-party cookies, and I know that it’s been a long time coming.
But prepare yourself for the absolute mess this will create when Google pulls the pin on third-party cookies. Martech and Adtech have been significantly underpinned by anonymous user identification across multiple platforms for a long time now. And the ship is creaking as it sets sail for a new direction.
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