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How Facebook’s shutdown of third-party data affects advertisers

March 30, 2018 / Shareen Pathak

Agencies and marketers are scrambling to make sense of the latest Facebook move to drop third-party data. “It’s been a busy 12 hours,” said Donnie Williams, chief digital officer at Horizon Media, which has had been fielding clients’ questions such as: “Is this a big deal?” “How prepared are we?” “We have campaigns running — what happens to that?” This week, Facebook pulled back on its ad-targeting offerings, shutting down its Partner Categories program that lets brands use third-party data to deliver ads. Partner Categories, which came about through partnerships from data companies like Epsilon and Acxiom, let advertisers target customers based on behavior that happened outside Facebook. The move doesn’t affect use of Facebook’s own user data or brands’ own user data — Facebook said it still has good user data, and on that strength, advertisers will stick around. Since the news, Acxiom’s st...