What is a walled garden in advertising?

Q: What is a walled garden in advertising?

A: A walled garden, in advertising terms, is a closed platform or technology ecosystem with the ability to control the hardware, applications, and information required for access. In advertising, a walled garden is considered a source of second-party data, which marketers can purchase to extend customer profiles.

As marketers prepare for Google’s cookie deprecation planned for late 2023, many are taking a new look at second-party data from “walled gardens” to fill the gaps.

How to spot a walled garden

A walled garden in advertising is a closed platform wherein data does not leave the system. All walled gardens have a data management platform (DMP), demand-side platform (DSP) where customers can buy ads, and dynamic creative optimization (DCO) to allow customers to use DMP information to create personalized ads. Examples include Amazon, Facebook, Walmart, and Google.

What you can do with second-party data

Second-party data does give marketers access to first-party data from another organization, which can extend their understanding of customer profiles and allow them to target ads effectively without cookies. Walled gardens generally have significant customer bases and traffic, and their data, even in aggregate, is considered higher quality and more complete than third-party data.

How to judge if a walled garden is a good fit

The first question you should ask when you explore opportunities to use walled gardens in advertising strategies is whether or not the company has similar data governance and security policies to your own. Also consider whether the walled garden’s customer base is similar to your target audience, and how that data might fill gaps for your strategy.

Ultimately, the best approach is to prioritize first-party data, but as you transition your customer data strategy, second-party data may help make the process smoother.

Not sure if walled gardens are right for your advertising strategy?
Learn more about first-party data strategies, and how to get prepared for cookie deprecation >>

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