How technology is upending the advertising business

WPP London.JPG

  • Technology has upended the advertising business.
  • Changes in ad tracking and evolving consumer habits are forcing advertisers to change longstanding ways of zapping ads at people.
  • Here's a breakdown of Insider's coverage of how these changes are impacting ad buyers and sellers.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

The advertising industry is going through big changes as technology changes upend consumer habits and where and how marketers reach them.

Apple and Google's phasing out third-party cookies threatens to upend longstanding ad targeting practices. The acceleration of streaming TV has fueled the chase for TV ad dollars.

The shift to online shopping has attracted new players for digital advertising.

Insider has been tracking these trends at some of the biggest advertising buyers and sellers, including WPP, Omnicom, Google, and Amazon, and rounded up our coverage.

The crackdown on ad tracking is changing advertising

Targeting changes are forcing advertisers to come up with new ways to reach consumers. Google and Apple have sent shockwaves through the ad industry when they announced changes that would put an end to longstanding ad targeting practices in the face of pro-privacy regulation.

Those moves have led marketers, their agencies, and adtech companies like LiveRamp and The Trade Desk scrambling to find workarounds.

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Marketing meets tech

Mars Inc M&Ms
Employees work at the chocolate maker Mars Chocolate France plant in Haguenau.

CMOs are finding new ways to target consumers, building homegrown tools, using targeted ads, or ​​snapping up ad tech and martech companies.

Brands like Anheuser-Busch, Mars, P&G and L'Oréal have ramped up efforts to gather data on consumers as platforms clamp down on ad targeting and e-commerce accelerates.

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Adtech is hot again

Even as advertisers slashed their spending in the economic downturn, the rise of streaming TV and online shopping has benefitted adtech companies that help connect ad buyers and sellers and solve advertising and marketing problems.

Investors are pouring money into firms like like TVision DoubleVerify that are solving problems in digital advertising. Other firms are going public as Wall Street fell back in love with adtech due to broad macroeconomic changes.

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New players are disrupting the ad industry

Instacart Shopper Car
Instacart is adding 30-minute delivery.

The established holding companies are scrambling to adapt to the digital shift, while new kinds of specialty ad companies threaten to take their place.

And a new set of companies including delivery services, retailers, and platforms like Instacart, Walmart, and TikTok are gunning for a piece of the ad business.

Investors, startups, and vendors are also trying to cash in on the opportunity.

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