(And How It Might Impact Your Marketing Results)
Tech giants Apple and Facebook are going head to head with the latest software update and both businesses and individuals are set to feel the effects over the next few months.
Apple’s latest update, iOS 14.5, prohibits apps from collecting user data, unless you opt-in with a prompt on each app. This prompt will allow the individual to choose whether they consent to third-party sites like Facebook and Instagram tracking their data for advertising.
It’s been the talk of the digital ‘town’ for months, but the new software is only now slowly rolling out to Apple users across the world. While it is a great step for individual privacy and security, it’s set to make personalised advertising and current marketing strategies a lot harder for businesses.
The impact on your marketing results
While it’s a little too early to know its exact effects, marketers can expect less total data, more inaccurate data and a decrease in reach on paid advertising – largely due to underreporting.
One of the key shifts will be in measuring Facebook and Instagram advertising results. Prior to the change, we could track a number of actions or events that a user took on a website using a Facebook Pixel. We could then remarket a product or service to them, capture a conversion or create a lookalike audience to expand our reach.
With the new change, Facebook can’t track user behaviour as a default, with users having to opt-in to allow this tracking. Working on the presumption that many will opt-out, this dramatically reduces the amount of potential data collected, as well as the potential audience that you can remarket to.
There will also be a delay on the data you can collect – accurate data will only be available three days after recording, due to Apple’s Private Click Measurement (PLM) protocol, which can restrict and delay data access.
It’s not all bad news
Paid advertising is still incredibly effective if done correctly, with web traffic and lead generation campaigns continuing as normal. While it’s too early to tell, it could also result in more engaged and tailored audiences, as those who have opted-in have done so on purpose and are happy to receive personalised advertising.
It’s also not to say that your advertising or desired messages won’t reach as many people as before – it’s more that tracking will become more difficult.
What can we do about it?
If you do run conversion campaigns, you could potentially exclude iOS devices from the audience (to target Android only). You could also shift the focus of your campaigns outside the conversion objective, such as traffic and lead generation.
Overall, Facebook will continue to drive brand awareness and new leads to your site, so making sure you’ve got a high converting landing page connected to any social media campaign is still well worth using the platform as part of your marketing strategy.
How will this affect builders?
We don’t rely heavily on conversion campaigns, so we don’t expect to see a monumental shift in our paid advertising strategies. As most of our builders don’t require 100s of leads per month, a more targeted campaign could actually save money in the long run by reaching ultra-specific audiences that could turn into clients.
Outside of this, you can focus your efforts on alternative marketing strategies: email marketing, content creation and organic social channels. Invest in growing your email marketing database, creating landing pages that capture email addresses and allow for automated campaigns that encourage action with a similar level of personalisation.
If you haven’t already, review your sales process and customer service procedures to make sure they are at their most effective, and turn the focus to your organic social content, investing in delivering quality content that potential customers will find value in.
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