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The Emergence of the SaaS Hybrid Model

SaaS, Software as a Service, has disrupted a model that has been in place for decades (and some big companies are still trying to hold on to it) whereby businesses rent a solution rather than buying and owning that solution. With the SaaS model, businesses have really no control or say over the solution they are “renting” other than subscribing to it or configuring it. That does not mean it is a bad thing. However, a new SaaS model is emerging, the SaaS Hybrid model, enabling businesses to have some control over their systems and to also meet regulations regarding data storage.

The Advantages of a SaaS Model

  • One of the biggest advantage of SaaS solutions is that they are always up to date. Gone are the days where your IT team need to go through patch updates and upgrade cycles.
  • Another big advantage is that you don’t have to worry about infrastructure that is becoming more and more complex, gone are the days of having to add more storage, servers, memory, firewalls, etc. All that is being taken care of by the SaaS company.
  • There is of course the big incentive for businesses in all their decision making, which is cost. For the most part and for most business types, renting is going to be cheaper. Gone are the days of very heavy initial investment before you even know how things are going to work and if you are going to be stuck with huge bill and a system that no one knows how to use. The SaaS model allows businesses to assess and measure the solutions they want at a small fraction of the cost they used to pay before.

However, for certain businesses, there are some restrictions that might prevent them from renting a full solution (like banking and government) and there are other businesses that want the technology to be part of their intellectual property.

Hence there are growing calls for a hybrid SaaS model that combines ownership with rent in one solution. The ownership in this case would be on the data side (and maybe some capabilities) while the renting would be on the application side.

The Advantages of a Hybrid SaaS Model

  • It allows the businesses to maintain control over their data by hosting it in their own environment (whether on the cloud or on site) while renting the processing power and the brain of the solution from a SaaS company.
  • It enables the business to their own internal applications and capabilities on top of their data while still leveraging the power of other SaaS applications.

However, the Hybrid model comes with certain challenges:

  • Cost is the biggest challenge as it goes without saying that renting a full solution is in general cheaper than renting part of it and building/maintaining the other part.
  • The upgrades and updates need to be closely coordinated with the SaaS company (or companies).
  • Security and data privacy in this case fall on the shoulders of the business, since data is in their environment so their IT team would be responsible for its security.
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The Death Of Browser Cookies & What That Means For Online Ads

For 25 years, third-party cookie technology was the main source of DATA that forms the basis of advertising. However, due to growing privacy concerns and regulations, the death of browser cookies was not a big surprise as technology companies and more specifically “Internet Browser” companies like Apple (Safari), Google (Chrome), Microsoft (Explorer), and Firefox and others have started to implement stricter privacy policies when it comes to tracking people who are using those browsers through what is known as the third-party cookies.

Some browsers—Safari and Mozilla Firefox—already no longer support third-party cookies. The announcement by Google that it too will block these cookies in Chrome by end of 2021 has provided the impetus for a range of responses from martech, adtech, advertisers and publishers.

To be clear, there is no threat to first-party cookies, the cookies used by websites to collect information about users who have chosen to interact with them. On the other hand, Thirdparty cookies are created by domains that are not the website (or domain) that you are visiting. These are usually used for online-advertising purposes and placed on a website through adding scripts or tags. A thirdparty cookie is accessible on any website that loads the thirdparty server’s code.

Take for example the Facebook Pixel ID, which is simply a snippet of code that is embedded within the web site that automatically tracks users’ activities like browsing products, and shopping carts (even abandoned ones) that feeds into the Facebook advertising algorithm that enables businesses to target users on Facebook more efficiently. It is through the Pixel ID that Facebook is able to display an ad showing the product that you left in your cart a few minutes ago.

With browsers blocking that kind of code to be used on web sites, this leaves online platforms like Facebook (along with businesses and online advertising agencies) somehow in the dark and the overall efficiency of online advertising goes down drastically. This poses a big challenge for businesses as they need the data to optimize their online ads but they can no longer rely on third-party cookies to do that.

How To Overcome The Death of Browser Cookies

No longer able to rely on third-party code to collect user data that is essential for optimizing online ads, businesses are now faced with the challenge of collecting that data themselves directly on their sites and then send that data to online platforms like Facebook where that data is used to help them optimize their online ads targeting.

That does not mean that businesses now need to start hiring developers and build software development team as there are other companies that can do that for them. However, this is something that businesses now need to plan and and, more importantly, budget for.

One of the most efficient solutions to help businesses tackle that challenge is the Customer Data Platform, CDP; a solution that collects, unifies, and centralizes the customer data of a business across the different channels, offline and online. That data can then be used by the business to efficiently engage their customers and to also optimize their online ads by sharing that data with the likes of Facebook and Google.

One of the many advantages of a CDP is that it enables the business to easily control which data to share with the online ads platforms as opposed to having third-party cookies blindly sending all information out. This means that business can still be able to optimize their online ads while adhering to the privacy regulations.

The UrbanBuz CDP Platform With Online Ads Integration

With the UrbanBuz Customer Journey Management (CJM) platform, a business can quickly centralize all their customer touch points, online and offline, and with the very user-friendly and intuitive design along with seamless integration with online ads platforms like Facebook and Google, they can easily connect their data to their online ads accounts, control what data to use to optimize their online ads, and measure the ROI of those online ads offline and online.

Customer data is critical to the success of a business now more than ever as privacy regulations are locking down on random and blind data gathering without the knowledge and consent of customers. However, businesses now can take control of their relationships with their customers and gather data they desperately need for their growth in a safe and efficient manner.

To learn more how UrbanBuz can help you optimize your online marketing, click HERE.