Irish Times, Philadelphia Inquirer share advertising strategies without third-party cookies

By Nevin Kallepalli

New York, United States


INMA Advertising Initiative Lead Mark Challinor opened the Digital Advertising workshop during the recent World Congress of News Media with an open-ended question: “How do we place our future bets in a fast-paced ad world?”

As the Internet phases out cookies, companies will be forced to come up with creative strategies for targeting potential consumers. Challinor’s answer to this is contextual targeting:

“The right ad at the right time with the right content is the goal,” he said. And if media companies are able to improve user experience, “no one will win more than the consumer.”

So what considerations should advertisers bear in mind as they move forward in 2023? The cost-of-living crisis, a demand for authenticity among companies, and sustainability to name a few.

Making use of first-party data

“It is crucial to link subscription data and advertising data into one big data lake,” Challinor said, and strategies like these were echoed by the presenters. 

Eimear Moran, media solutions director of The Irish Times, is foregrounding privacy concerns in the newspaper’s ad strategy. Currently, 60% of advertisements are targetable by cookies, but that number will sharply decline in the new future. Thus, identifying trends among the demographics of subscriber data is vital.

Moran’s attitude about this is quality over quantity. “Reach the one’s that count, don’t just count the ones you reach,” she said. Ads themselves should be more specific.

At The Irish Times, a number of questions inform marketing strategy. What device is the user viewing an ad on? Does the content of the ad align with the page in which it’s placed? How can user activity as readers toggle from sections within the newspaper be analyzed and put toward higher quality ads?

Gamification and quizzes are also useful potential tools in getting to know the needs of consumers.

Optimising internal communication 

Lauren Amato, vice president of digital sales strategy at The Philadelphia Inquirer, offered a series of strategies her team uses to ensure cross-departmental collaboration. She used the Inquirer’s sports working group as an example. 

In 2021, the Inquirer launched its app Gameday Central, an interactive experience users can engage with alongside live coverage of sporting events. Gameday Central is a rich hub of potential sponsorships, ad placements, and increased reader engagement. 

How did they pull this off? By abiding by 10 helpful tips:


Reaching Spanish-speaking audiences

The sole objective of Cayetano Chimeno, country manager/Spain and global partnership at Digo, is reaching Spanish-speaking consumers in the United States.

Chimeno shared with workshop attendees a scrupulous report on demographics among American Latinos. A few key touchstones: by and large they are growing and they embrace technology.

If advertisers are to reach the needs of Latinos, they must understand Spanish-speakers are an inextricable part of this nation’s DNA:

Chimeno offered a few succinct points: “Brands can’t afford to ignore this large — and heterogeneous — demographic.”  

About Nevin Kallepalli

By continuing to browse or by clicking “ACCEPT,” you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance your site experience. To learn more about how we use cookies, please see our privacy policy.