iOS apps now have privacy settings that let users opt out of tracking
Western civilization has long been rooted in areas surrounding the sea for survival and maintaining economic and social ties, much like how businesses use the internet and apps for connecting with their consumers. Nearly 300 million people use smartphones in America. More than 113 million of those are iPhone users, accounting for about 47% nationwide. That’s a lot of people, which guarantees a large portion of consumers use iPhones, and in turn, are affected by Apple’s recent iOS 14 privacy update. Changes in technology are no surprise to seasoned marketers — we batten down the hatches a lot but this is a storm we can’t wait out.
“Privacy is a fundamental human right and at the core of everything we do. That’s why with iOS 14, we’re giving you more control over the data you share and more transparency into how it’s used,” Apple states on their website. A lot of consumers are excited about their ability to opt out of tracking but there’s also a lot of apprehension on the business side about how to reach these consumers still, specifically ad buys through Facebook (and apps owned by Facebook like Instagram, Messenger and WhatsApp).
“Privacy is a fundamental human right and at the core of everything we do. That’s why with iOS 14, we’re giving you more control over the data you share and more transparency into how it’s used.” – Apple
Digital marketers know Facebook advertising is a huge piece of marketing strategy for audience targeting, lead generation, conversions and brand awareness. Whether or not you’ve had a moment to digest the changes to privacy and data sharing policies, figuring out what it means for your brand is another matter.
Ad Tracking, Measurement + Proprietary Data
Reporting will look different in the coming months so get your sea legs fast. The best digital marketers are the ones that are quick to adapt and capitalized on emerging changes. Measurement will continue to get more difficult because there are some unknowns we can’t predict yet, like how many iOS users will actually opt in or out? And how will this change already established custom audiences?
We do know more platforms will start using modeling to determine the performance at the ad set and individual ad levels. Outside of Facebook and Instagram, not a lot will be changing but you have to double down on using data that you own. First party data has always been king but will become an even bigger player in this new digital landscape.
“We disagree with Apple’s approach and solution, yet we have no choice but to show Apple’s prompt.” – Facebook
Start thinking about how to diversify your advertising and revenue-generating strategies. Small businesses were hit harder than most, especially those that struggled with physical restrictions during COVID — so you went heavy on digital advertising — but now you really need to explore other strategies to manually collect customer data to help with your retargeting efforts, such as extra landing pages and email captures. Yes, the age-old tactic that not only communicates directly to your audience but allows you to create custom audiences with data you already own.
Prioritize Pixel Events
Pixels are the unsung heroes of Facebook advertising. Remember the days when there were no limits and you were even recommended to add a pixel to every single page on your website? No more. If you optimize, target or report on web events from pixels, you have to run a tight ship and update your event setup. The new update only allows you to place eight pixel objectives on a single domain or else Facebook will choose them for you. This reduces the amount of data you can collect so you need to be savvy about which events you choose. Not being able to effectively target properly means your ad spend will become less efficient and more expensive.
We’re in deep water now. Be sure to verify your domain and enable the Conversions API to help collect data from other avenues like email open rates. If you’re eligible for value optimization (VO), enable it as well so you can bid for the highest-value users to take the desired action on a website.
Honorable Mention: Android Only
Remember, you can still cater to and target Android users and devices. Those consumers aren’t affected by iOS 14 updates and Facebook will still be able to track their data across their decision-making journey.
Don’t let Apple’s privacy update leave you dead in the water. This is an opportunity to ride the largest swell of a challenge yet! Here at YPM we’re ready to help you not only understand how to best position your business with this new update but also navigate it seamlessly. Marketers have to adjust their strategies all the time with new technology and this is no different.