PPA Blog

The Battle for Attention in a Cookie-less World

By Jess Browne-Swinburne

11 May 2021

Media has been disrupted like no other time in our lifetime. Consumer habits and attention patterns were changed, representing challenges but also opportunities for magazine brands. What have we learnt about the changing nature of attention and consumer needs over the past 12 months? As we move into an accelerated digital future without third party cookies, how can publishers persuade advertisers and other partners to work and think differently about the opportunity that magazine environments offer. Anna Sampson, Insight & Strategy Director at Magnetic Media tells us more.

Key Takeaways

1. Many commentators see the cookie changes as a chance to improve current practices. An academic paper that analysed over 90 third party audiences across 19 data brokers showed that they only correctly identified gender 46% of the time (which is worse than random). Marketers are looking to use context-based targeting for possible answers. Publishers are well placed to be part of these 1st party data solutions.

2. The reality is whether you take a targeted or a broad reach approach to your communications, impressions only work if they make an impression. Data will get you to the audience, but it won’t get you their attention.

3. Ground-breaking work from The Attention Council and founding member Karen Nelsen Field, author of ‘The Attention Economy’, has shown a positive link between attention and sales.

4. Magnetic has added to this body of work with their own project using Lumen’s eye tracking approach to QUANTIFY attention to advertising on magazine websites.

5. Ads on magazine sites tend to outperform similar sized ads on close comparator sites. Adverts on magazine websites viewed via desktop get on average 2 seconds of attention compared to 1.4 seconds for other quality digital displays.

6. Because more people look at the ads and for longer, magazines generate TWICE as much attention to advertising compared to other quality digital display.


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