FMNs may be the future of ads

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The Future. Banks and financial services firms are launching financial media networks (FMNs), online platforms that use customers’ first-party data to advertise in place of third-party cookies. FMNs yield huge quantities of valuable customer data that could be the future of advertising… and an enormous privacy risk for consumers.

Banking on data
Digiday covers the new technology of FMNs and their implications for customer privacy.

  • FMNs are similar to RMNs (aka retail media networks), which major retailers like Walmart and Target can use to observe customers’ spending habits and monetize as data.
  • FMNs are trying to cash in on RMNs’ popularity now that RMN spending is estimated at $140 billion this year and set to tie social media for the second-largest means of global ad spending in 2027.
  • The big difference is that FMNs — often run by banks — can examine all the activity in customers’ bank accounts. This is way more informative (and invasive) than RMNs.

Chase Bank launched an FMN this April, while PayPal, Revolut, and Klarna all have similar services in the works.

“Just checking”
Data harvested by FMNs is certainly valuable; economically, it could rival or even surpass third-party cookies. The real question is whether it can be gathered and sold in a way that preserves consumers’ privacy since the whole point of outlawing cookies is consumer protection.

Will customers be able to opt out of FMNs? Or is the cure worse than the disease?

Luke Perrotta


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