Digital Strategy | Untitled-13 5 min read

Moving forward: a conversation starter

by Bench February 4, 2021

Moving forward: a conversation starter

After a year unlike anything before, it’s still quite uncertain how 2021 will unfold. The advertising industry is facing both monumental challenges and exciting opportunities. This is particularly true in the identity and data space as the industry waits to see what will happen with the deprecation of the cookie, Apple’s proposed iOS updates and other evolving solutions put forward by technology leaders. 

We asked several senior leaders at Bench to share their thoughts on the year ahead and the evolving nature of identity and data.

Let’s get the conversation started. Get in touch to learn more about our marketing solutions for the year ahead.

What are you most excited about for the year ahead? 

Ori Gold, Chief Executive Officer: There are very exciting megatrends going through our industry as it matures. Callouts on anti-competition and privacy issues are coming from all directions: consumers, regulatory bodies and the marketplace itself. This creates a lot of healthy discussion and opportunities for brands and agencies to educate themselves about the risks of putting all their eggs in one ad or media basket. Working only with one ad stack or DSP, and buying most media through Google or Facebook, has a strategic warning sign on it. 

It’s very exciting for us to advise both brands and agencies and provide them with the right software to be independent and avoid these pitfalls. We provide clarity on the prices and outcomes of their media, and properly control their ad activity in this time of change.

Shai Luft, Chief Operations Officer: The last year has been challenging for the industry. In spite of this, it has made us innovate at a faster speed than ever before, and become more agile and responsive to our clients’ needs. It’s very exciting to see us extend our footprint into Asia and adapt to this complex landscape so that we can help more marketing teams better control their digital investment. 

David Cameron, Engineering Director: Seeing all the new ideas that have been generated through the Covid lockdowns come to life.

Esther Carlsen, Commercial Director: I feel really ready to get stuck into this year. We are hitting reset, launching new offerings and focusing on transition and growth. With programmatic now operating across all media channels, it’s important to tailor solutions for marketers’ needs more than ever. It’s essential to drive strategic value for our customers at every step. 

What are your thoughts on the evolution of identity and data in 2021?

Ori Gold, Chief Executive Officer: There are many great initiatives being put forward by different players, which is great to see. It’s not yet clear what solution will take the realm, but this evolution is very healthy for our industry and will accelerate the trust that consumers put in the digital ecosystem. At Bench, we’re very excited to be able to provide our customers with a variety of solutions in this area, and tailor the right one to fit brand ethos and marketing needs.

Shai Luft, Chief Operations Officer: Ultimately everyone wants better control over their data: what they give, who accesses it, and the ability to be in the driving seat of our valuable information. Our job is to be relevant to the right people that are a good fit for our product and services. If the industry creates an identity solution that gets this right, people will be more willing to engage with relevant ads, which will lead to a better marketing experience for everyone. 

David Cameron, Engineering Director: We’re going through a pretty seismic change in the industry. We’ve got consumers, governments and market players all pulling in different directions. Clearly there is a need for a solution, and it’s going to be interesting to see where it lands.

Esther Carlsen, Commercial Director: Well, it’s a big topic — that’s for sure. It’s well documented that there are serious headwinds to the way we have ‘done’ data in the past, and from my past life at LiveRamp, I fully understand the importance and relevance of first-party data, privacy and identity resolution solutions.

There is a lot of noise, a lot of confusion, a lot of claims to unpack, but ultimately the move is happening. Data as we know it is finally changing.

There are some very interesting opportunities coming from the likes of The Trade Desk and LiveRamp around addressability and interoperable ID solutions. On the flip side, I’m liking the fact that contextual and good old behavioural targeting is making a comeback — much like boyfriend jeans — as there is much value to be derived from this. We have been working on how to help our customers prepare, which includes partnering with the right people, developing products that make sense and delivering real tangible alternative solutions for marketers. We do not need to catastrophise, but we certainly need to understand the gaps and how we can pull together as an industry to fill them.