Advertising ID Consortium Rolls On

Rumors of the Advertising ID Consortium’s demise were greatly exaggerated after AT&T announced that its programmatic ad tech arm AppNexus was “no longer participating” in the group.

Soon before the launch of AT&T-AppNexus conjoined ad tech division Xandr, the Advertising ID Consortium founding member and major exchange took a step back from its group leadership role and left the board of directors. However, the AppNexus cookie-based ID remains available to Consortium partners alongside LiveRamp’s IdentityLink, Digitrust and The Trade Desk’s Unified Open ID (

Confusion circling the consortium’s fate post-AppNexus-AT&T merger can be tied to a lack of understanding of the purpose and setup of the consortium. One primary goal of the group is to reduce fragmentation and poor user match rates caused by an abundance of cookie-based IDs along with easing online congestion for users from user sync calls.

The use of common identifiers can greatly cut down on user syncs, speed up data-driven transactions, and bump up match rates between exchanges and DSPs. In addition, the Consortium’s aim is to bring identity- or people-based marketing – to the open programmatic market, while also improving data-based campaign capabilities such as frequency capping and attribution.

Early on, members of the Consortium realized that choice was important. So while the initial cookie-based ID was built around the domain and the IdentityLink device graph of LiveRamp, compatibility partnerships were also formed with The Trade Desk and DigiTrust to ensure choice of options.

Sources are expecting the forthcoming rollout of common identifiers to significantly increase DSP match rates. They will not interfere with or expose buyer and seller efforts to leverage first-party proprietary data. While progress was slowed due to the announcement of AT&T’s acquisition of AppNexus, updates will soon be rolling out by Consortium members.