Posted - October 14, 2021

Preparing for When the Cookie Crumbles

Posted Privacy

Google recently updated its cookie guidelines for the digital marketing industry, but hold on! Google just announced that it will delay the end of third-party tracking cookies from 2021 to 2023, giving brands more time to prepare for more privacy-conscious targeted ads.

So, marketers may have two more years before the cookie crumbles. While this is undoubtedly a godsend for marketers, businesses should not over-rejoice or continue with their current third-party procedures.

Brands must keep preparing. Time to act now, as this is only an inevitable postponement; cookies are still disappearing. That is, unless you’re ZuuKeeper, as we’ve been preparing.

Our ability to target consumers accurately and effectively is now and will remain intact without third-party cookies. ZuuKeeper has always done this. We’ll get a better response if we target all visitors to a site like Motor Trend or Car and Driver instead of just Harry’s Hotrods.

Here are five effective strategies brands can use to maximize their remaining cookie time:


Consumers used to be unconcerned about things like privacy, but that era has passed. The public has become warier of invasions of privacy. Sadly, as technology advances for the better, there will be advancements for the bad to use their information maliciously. Apple has invested heavily in privacy-protective marketing campaigns, hence the policy changes.

This is not the time for marketers to flee. Many brands feel like they’ve been given another twenty-four months to target the buying public with retargeting ads and try to increase click rates. That may sound simple, but it will ultimately harm brands. We must earn the public’s trust by not abusing this extra time.


Most businesses expected to be left in the lurch after Google announced the extension. The agencies and vendors who claimed to be ready simply planned to go back ten years to when they only used contextual targeting. This means they can only target genres of sites where they think their users are, with no real targeting or accuracy. This loss of targeting ability is intolerable. Because many of their cookie-free future solutions weren’t ready for widespread implementation yet, the transition to a cookie-free world wasn’t expected to be seamless!

That’s why Google extended its timeline. Even their best cookieless methods couldn’t handle the big league. That’s why it’s critical for brands to keep testing and learning throughout 2021 and 2022 to improve and perfect their solutions.


Many in the digital marketing community expected a flurry of announcements about cookie-free platforms, privacy-compliant data products, and new identifiers in the third quarter of 2021. Many vendors take advantage of the extra time and delay their launches, but Genius Monkey is confident that the expected influx of cookie-free solutions will still occur. These marketers should focus on preparing for 2023 as they did for 2021.

It’s like being late for work, fearing you won’t make your flight, only to learn that it will be an hour later than planned. Do you relax and watch 60 Minutes on TV, or do you keep getting ready and getting to the airport early to avoid being in the same situation an hour later? The answer is obvious and can be compared to those brands that haven’t prepared for the cookie’s demise.

This means there is more time to experiment and develop the perfect mix of first-party, contextual, co-op, survey, and other data. So they can learn how to live without cookies. The goal is to develop methods that are as effective as current methods but do not violate consumers’ privacy.


Safari and Firefox account for 39% of the US browser market, according to While Chrome has the majority (49%) of online users, the other two share 41%. Marketers have avoided targeting this group for a long time because these browsers disable cookies by default.

All the attention about Chrome’s cookies disappearing has persuaded brands to pay more attention to this large and previously neglected audience. They’re now looking into how they can be reintroduced into their targeting strategy. These two browsers will have to experiment a lot to learn how targeting works without cookies. A new focus on these two browsers will provide a new audience for brands who perfect their strategy before 2023.

Google’s latest announcement shows how quickly things can change in the digital world. This change has been implemented gradually, but Google could follow other browsers’ lead and disable tracking by default. Cookies may still be supported but disabled for some users.


When Google made its initial announcement, several tech vendors had to adjust their attribution methods. The new strategy will lose cookies, affecting attribution for those without a plan. Many developers have had to follow ZuuKeeper’s lead and develop performance measurements without cookies.

While it is true that Google’s timeline adjustment has relaxed many brands, they must not rest on their laurels. Marketers know what consumers want in terms of privacy, and we must deliver. It’s time for a paradigm shift… why not now?

Overall, marketers are thankful for the delay in Google’s rollout because it buys us time, but we should be grateful for the reminder to keep innovating and adapting. We strongly urge you to consider your internal process changes to prepare for a cookie-free future and what else may change in the future, and how you can prepare now.

The programmatic advertising space can be a zoo!  You will need a ZuuKeeper.

Programmatic advertising is the most efficient and effective way to reach your audience without wasting ad dollars by throwing money at the wall and seeing what sticks.

ZuuKeeper is an all-in-one programmatic advertising company that does it all. From ad creation to campaign launch plus ongoing optimization. We eat, sleep, and breathe, helping our clients grow their businesses in the most cost-effective way possible.

Reach out to the ZuuCrew today to learn more about how we help businesses of all sizes create and launch effective programmatic ad campaigns.

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