Explaining the fundamentals of transient identifiers

28 Jul | 4 minutes

Most people who work in digital advertising know about shared identifiers. They’re being touted as a replacement to cookies and mobile device IDs for use in targeting audiences and personalising content. But what about the transient ID?

Here, I want to lay out the fundamentals of transient IDs – how they relate to shared IDs and what their role will be in the future digital ad ecosystem.

What is a transient ID?

The ad industry of tomorrow will require an interoperable network of identifiers to enable effective people-based marketing. This network will include both shared IDs and transient IDs.

Shared IDs use log-in authentication to create a single, shared identity for a person across publishers. Transient IDs, on the other hand, are a solution for data delivery to enable privacy-first, people-based marketing on the anonymous web (i.e. the portion of the web where users’ activities and PII are not tracked by brands). As the latter captures both authenticated (i.e. logged on to a shared ID service) and non-authenticated web users it has the broadest reach.

Transient IDs, like our own “Dynamic Snowflake ID”, keeps the private data of end-users secure by using a different identifier for each data signal. In theory, this means that the identifier is completely anonymous. In reality, the ID is used alongside persistent shared IDs in the bid request, so transient IDs are more accurately described as pseudonymous.

What are the characteristics of transient IDs?

With transient IDs, there’s just one ID in the bid request but the segment response is specific to each buyer and rotates with each transient ID generated. Importantly, the segment goes directly to the buyer – it’s not distributed in the bid request. In the case of our Dynamic Snowflake ID, the response is served directly from the data source (i.e telecoms networks) to the buyer based on a query raised using the ID. Once the ID has fulfilled its purpose, its ability to be re-used evaporates. Transient IDs can therefore be characterised by individual segment responses for each ad request that goes directly to the buyer.

Why use transient IDs?

Different types of identifiers have different uses, and there’s space for all of them. Transient IDs are ideal for privacy-first targeting and personalisation. The identifier provides advertisers peace of mind that they are using verified and consented data to map segments and that their approach is compliant with major data privacy regulations. Transient IDs safeguard personal data by keeping personally identifiable information (PII) within highly secure telco networks. At no point does personal data get transacted within the advertising value chain.

How are transient IDs processed?

Transient IDs are created in partnership with publishers and then added to the bid stream by Supply Side Platforms (SSPs).

In Novatiq’s case, we integrate our Dynamic Snowflake ID with ID5’s Universal ID (their shared identifier). Both IDs are generated on the publisher side and lifted by the SSP. The integrated approach thereby provides both data delivery and measurement capabilities for publishers.

How do advertisers benefit from transient IDs?

The main benefit of transient IDs is that advertisers can continue to target precise audience segments in a privacy-first way. Accurate targeting helps increase the effectiveness of campaigns. Novatiq’s Dynamic Snowflake IDs have a track record of delivering impressive results for major brands.

For example, OMD Programmatic brought Novatiq on board to help with a campaign it was running for Nissan. Using our Dynamic Snowflake IDs, the company was able to generate a precise audience segment to generate leads for the Nissan Micra.  Our in-network process allowed eligible audiences to be matched to Nissan’s campaign request, safely behind the firewall of Turkcell – the first party consented data provider.

As a result of this precise, privacy-first targeting, the campaign saw a 30% higher clickthrough rate than a sister campaign that focused on cookie-based segments. The campaign also achieved a staggering 300% uplift on the cookie-based approach.

These figures are not an exception for campaigns that leverage transient IDs, they are the rule. You can learn more here.

28 Jul