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Aymeric de Lansalut Data Partnerships Director Europe adsquare

Why App Publishers Are Missing Out On The Data Opportunity That Comes With GDPR

Monetisation is one of the key challenges for app publishers, after content creation and user acquisition. The options available haven’t changed a lot for the past 10 years: paywall, in-app purchases, and media selling. But one revenue channel still remains overlooked by publishers: data monetisation. With the 25th of May now just a few days away, selling data is probably the last thing most publishers want to hear about. During my meetings with prospects, I have heard a few times: “Fantastic product, I like it, but let’s talk end of June”. What they are missing out is, that GDPR can be an incredible opportunity for publishers.

On the contrary, data monetisation should have been planned ahead. Let me explain: for years, plenty of third parties have been festering upon publisher’s data: from networks and exchanges or any entities listening to bid requests, to (increasingly) agencies building data assets of their own. Data leakage was not a problem, it was the norm. GDPR introduces the notion of explicit and informed consent from the users. Third parties who want legal access to users’ data will have no choice but to ask permission to the new gate keepers of data: publishers. They now have the power to clean the data supply chain if they leverage CMPs (Consent Management Platforms) intelligently, such as the one the IAB Europe released recently. Any third party that does not bring value to publishers will be eliminated.  

It is clear that first-party data will dominate the landscape and that its value will increase. We are facing an incredible opportunity for publishers to start thinking about standalone data monetisation. Of course, one can argue “yes, but a lot of publishers already have a data strategy”. Using a DMP and hiring a few data scientists and then bundling the result to your inventory is not “a data strategy”. It is rather an attempt to fight the ever decreasing CPMs - it is inventory centric, not data centric. 

In the Advertisers Perception study dated December 2017, we learn that if 80% of marketers use audience insights, only 33% of them say they completely trust them. Because with third party data, assessing quality is extremely difficult. In a 2017 poll done by eMarketer and Pitney Bowes, the top criterion for data vendor selection is quality (94% of respondents). Reach actually comes last, behind methodology and price, with 56% of respondents.

Monetising first-party data requires the correct tools. Particularly because you don’t really want to sell it - what you want to do is licensing your data. Monetising data should never involve transfer of ownership, but rather right of use. adsquare’s self-service platform offers exactly that. Our pre-bid integrations with programmatic platforms, privacy by design infrastructure and an ‘Audience Management Platform’ that puts the publishers in the driver seat, prevents data leakage and limits data usage to real-time enrichment. And the best thing of all, there is no SDK integration required. 

The market is ready to pay to use your first-party data. Are you ready for this?