If you’re advertising and reaching users on their mobile devices, the latest iOS 14 update will impact you.

Apple launched a new iOS 14 update in Q1 2021 which forces iPhone users to “opt-in” to be tracked by 3rd party apps downloaded from the App Store.

In this podcast episode, you’ll learn what this means for marketers and what to do about it.

Want more details immediately? Check out WebMechanix’s iOS 14 Preparation whitepaper.

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– If you are advertising
and reaching users[00:00:05.04]
on their mobile devices,
through apps, such[00:00:08.03]
as Twitter or Facebook, et
cetera, this will impact you.[00:00:13.02]
Hey, welcome back to More Than Marketing.[00:00:15.03]
I’m your host Arsham Mirshah
big topic for you today.[00:00:19.02]
Apple’s IOS 14, IOS 14.4 is
being rolled out this quarter

and it has major
implications for advertisers

who are doing user acquisition
or advertising otherwise

on app based platforms,
such as Facebook, Instagram,

YouTube, Tik Tok,
LinkedIn, Twitter, right?

If you are advertising and reaching users

on their mobile devices,
through apps such as Twitter

or Facebook, et cetera,
this will impact you.

I’m going to talk about what it is,

what the potential impacts
are, what you can do about it

and some predictions.

Without further ado, let’s jump in.

So what’s happening?

Apple is rolling out a
new IOS operating system

for their iPhone where all apps

are going to have a prompt that says

do you allow this app
to track you? Basically.

If you’re watching this on
YouTube you can see that here,

if you are listening to this as a podcast,

imagine you open an app,
you’ve done this on your iPhone

and it says, you know, this
app wants to use your camera

or this app wants to send
you push notifications

and you have the choice
to allow or deny that.

The same thing, the same
prompt is going to come up

and it’s going to say
instead, do you allow this app

to track you and otherwise,
you know, use the data

from your activity on this
app, for whatever reason.

And then the app developers
going to be able to say,

you know here’s what we do with that data,

as well as you as a user are
going to be able to go in

and see exactly what they
are collecting, right?

So Facebook is kind of
at the forefront of this.

They’ve done a lot of webinars

for their advertisers and
they’ve rolled out new policies

and regulations and features

and what have you to not
combat this, but you know,

to prepare for this really

and Facebook is really
kind of upset with Apple

because this is going to impact
the way that targeting works

on Facebook, as well as the data that you

the advertiser are going
to be able to get back

from apps like Facebook, I’m
going to use Facebook a lot,

they’re kind of at the forefront of this.

So, you know, you can interchange Facebook

with Instagram obviously

but also Tik Tok and Twitter
and LinkedIn and others.

So that’s, what’s happening.

You know, users are going
to update their iPhones,

they’re going to buy new iPhones,

it’s going to have IOS 14.4 on it.

And they’re going to be able
opt in or out of tracking

on each app that they use on their phone.

Right now we’re
guesstimating that maybe 30%

of people opt in.

That means 70% of people opt out

and some statistics for you,
so that is just a hypothesis.

You know, we don’t know
what it’s going to be

but if you are in the US
or advertise in the US,

or you know that’s primarily
where your business is,

61% of people in the US have an IOS iPhone

versus about 39% have an Android.

Globally, those numbers
are very different.

Globally, it’s 72% of
people have an Android

and only 26% or 27% of
people have an iPhone.

So if you’re globally

this is kind of a less
of an impact for you.

If you’re in the US much bigger impact.

So what does it mean again,
you’re going to have less data.

What’s happening is, you
know things like events

are being limited and attribution
windows are being limited

and events and conversion
data is being aggregated.

This is to help aid the user’s privacy.

So, you know, for instance
in extreme example,

you know today you’re able to say,

Oh, you know, I got a conversion.

It was John Doe Or Jane
Smith, I got it at this time,

And then I see the Facebook
event and I can tie

that Facebook event back to this ad.

And this ad says, you know,
it’s about this pain point

so now you know that Jane Smith
has this pain point, right?

That’s kind of an extreme example

but that’s the idea,
is that Facebook is now

going to aggregate events, so
it’s going to be harder for you

to analyze the data, generally speaking,

especially if you’re in a low event,

low conversion kind of
environment like that, you know,

if you only post, I don’t know, three

or three to seven conversions a week

versus 70 or 7,000 conversions a week,

you’re going to have even
less data to work with, right?

So what’s changing? I’ll
give you a quick rundown

and then we will go into details

of each and action steps for you as well.

So the first thing is attribution windows.

If you’re used to a 28 day
click attribution window,

it will be no longer is going down

to a seven day attribution window.

So if you have a longer sales cycle

and you have people who
are clicking your ads

but they’re not taking,
you know a certain action

or the action that you want for, you know,

more than seven days,
that conversion or event

is no longer going to show
up in Facebook’s platform.

I think that it will still show up,

I’m still learning about this one

because I think that the
event will still show up

but it just won’t be attributed to an ad.

And so that’s going to hurt your analysis

maybe your optimization as well.

And I’m still looking into like,

why would the events still
show up or will it show up?

I don’t know, but I
think it might be akin to

what Safari did, another
Apple product obviously,

their browser and Firefox as well,

where they limited all cookies
down to seven day lifespan.

So maybe that’s the same thing here

maybe they’re doing that
and I just haven’t seen it

or they haven’t published it.

And so like they’re
providing a temporary ID

or something like that, I don’t know.

And that temporary ID, you
know, expires in seven days.

The next thing is domain verification.

This is extremely important

for anyone who’s using the Facebook pixel

which is pretty much everyone.

If you don’t verify your domain,
your ads will be shut off.

Now, luckily, this is really easy to do.

It’s akin to Google search
console verification

where you change the DNS record

or upload a text file to
the root of your domain

and then it verifies your domain

and adds that legitimacy
to your ad account.

The next thing that’s
changing our conversions

and events at large, and
basically anyone who opts out

of the ATT prompt, the tracking prompt,

will have their conversions
beyond a delay back to Facebook,

24 to 48 hour delay.

So anyone who is kind of
doing a real-time reporting

or analysis or whatever, you know,

you’re going to want to wait
basically and look back, you know,

for longer time periods like
a week or something like that.

And even start your
analysis two days behind

to make sure all the
events and attributions

has it been captured.

On top of that conversions and events

are going to be aggregated, so again,

this is not good for like
low event environments

’cause you’re just going
to have less and less data,

it’s going to be less granular

and make it harder to do deep
analysis, which, you know,

there’s pros and cons there
’cause if you have an N of two

and you’re making decisions based on that,

it’s probably not a good thing anyway.

Okay, so also we’re only going to be able

to use eight events total.

I’ll go into a deep detail about this

but you’re going to be
limited to eight events

and you’re going to
have to prioritize them

and in what order you want
Facebook to collect them

I’ll go to detail on that one later.

And then the last kind
of overview piece here

is audience insights, anyone who opts out

of the ATT prompt will be
blocked from demographic data

so that’s going to make it a
little harder to see you know,

who your target audiences is you know,

you’re still going to be able to see it

but it’s going to be kind of
skew to the people who opt in

and to Android users, right?

So that I guess, and
towards desktop as well.

That’s interesting because I
think people will still use

that data but they may forget
that it’s kind of skewed now,

you know, you’re looking through
a opaque lens, so to speak.

You know, that’s something
to keep track of.

So that’s an overview,
attribution windows are changing,

you need to verify your
domain, conversions and events

are going to be delayed,
aggregated and limited

and audience insights is
going to be opaque now.

Let’s jump into some action steps.

You know, one of the action steps here

is to download your historical
data so you can use that

to analyze offline, off of Facebook,

’cause Facebook is going to start changing

their attribution windows,
you know no longer

with a 28 day attribution
exists, for example, right?

Everything’s going to
seven and one, I believe.

So, you’re going to need to
download your historical data

so that you can analyze that later

cause that’s going to be going away.

Another action step for you is to audit

and prioritize your customer events.

If you are, you know,
running the Facebook pixel,

you’re going to be limited
to eight events only.

Now, if you’re running like a basic

kind of lead gen campaign
or e-commerce program,

you’re probably going to be okay

with just eight events
like let’s use e-commerce

for example, you know,

your eight events will
probably be purchased,

add payment info, add to
cart, add to wishlist,

view product, you know,
lead, view content.

Okay, that’s cool.

So you can live with eight events.

You will need to prioritize them.

That means you have to go

into Facebook’s event manager
and set the priority of them.

There is some reason
for that it’s, you know,

Facebook is going to say, if
I can’t collect certain data,

that I’m going to opt to collect

the more prioritized data first,

if you have a complex
funnel and you have lots

of brands or lots of
websites, or lots of actions,

for your users to take, and
you’re used to having a lot

of events to use for
optimization or reporting

or whatever or analysis,

you’re limited to eight
now, unfortunately.

Another thing you’re going to
need to do is verify your domain.

So you’re going to have
to add a DNS record

or a text file to verify

that your top level
domain is in fact yours

and then tie that to your ad platform,

else, your ads are going to be
shut off on Facebook, right?

A really big one is automated rules.

If you’re using automated
rules in Facebook,

you’re going to want to audit them, right?

‘Cause if they’re running off of some data

that’s no longer going to be there,

they’re going to start
going haywire, going nuts,

so you’re going to want to audit them

and you know, choose
wisely what you run on.

You know, we’re suggesting to our clients

and what we’re doing for our clients

is removing a lot of those automated rules

and going back to good
old manual days, right?

To see what happens and we’re
doing this over the course

of the next couple months,
using that time to analyze,

you know, what can we run

with automated rules and what
is not going to work anymore.

All in all I hope my tone is
not kind of here to panic,

here to scare you.

You know, change is the
only constant, right

We kind of knew this was coming

and this is just the
start of it, you know,

user privacy is a big deal

especially with kind of
the blue sweep in Congress

and White House and what have you,

it’s likely that we’re going to
see more regulation on big tech

especially in the realm of privacy

and that’s generally a good
thing for users, you know,

users should have their
privacy in control,

they should be in control of their privacy

and big tech shouldn’t, you know
just be kind of manipulating

or overreaching their their power

to monetize users so to speak.

At the same time, you know

on the other side of the
coin is that, you know,

I think what you’re going to see happen,

well, we’ll see, this is now
I’m kind of in the predictions,

but if you imagine you’re on
Facebook and you’re getting ads

for things that you
don’t care about, right?

You’re not going to want that.

You want personalized ads.

You want ads for things that, you know,

speak to you for products and services

that you need that you’re
in the market for, right?

At least that’s what I
want for me personally.

I don’t want, you know ads for
things that don’t interest me

’cause that’s a waste my time, right?

I’ve learned a lot about a lot
of new products and services

through ads and I like that.

Maybe I’m biased, but
that’s how I feel, right?

But generally don’t panic I mean,

this is a great time to kind of focus

on the things that you can control

such as your user experience
and your creative.

I would also say, you know,
remember that there was a time

before Facebook and all of the, you know,

nitty gritty data that we could
dig into and analyze, right?

Algorithms and cookies
didn’t exist 20 years ago

maybe cookies did but
you get the idea, right?

There was a time where we
didn’t have all this data

and all this machine
learning and what have you.

And this is just a step
kind of back a little bit

towards that, not a big
deal, things still work.

If you have a good brand,
if you care about your user,

you know, you have a good user
journey, you should be fine.

You know, you may not have
all the granular detail

to know exactly which ad is
working at which time of day

but there was a time

when you didn’t have that either, right?

So, some predictions for you,

’cause this is kind of the fun part.

Facebook, isn’t the only app
that’s going to require users

to opt into the tracking prompt,

obviously it’s going
to be every single app.

And the more trusted the app is,

the higher the opt-in rate is going to be.

Also think about the
user’s demographics, right?

So Reddit has millions of users of course,

but there is a certain
subset of Reddit that’s like,

hey, you know, very privacy minded

and very kind of attuned
to this kind of technology

and so they’re going to opt out.

Similarly, Facebook is no
stranger to controversy,

especially as it pertains to privacy.

So we could see lower opt-in rates there.

At the same time, you have kind of

an older generation
relatively to other apps,

such as Tik Tok and Snapchat
on Facebook that the generation

is a little bit older

and they may just go look at that prompt

and click one of the buttons
and not know which one it is

and so you may see higher.

So we’ll see that one
is no prediction there

but I will predict that this is
going to be like a major issue

for the next six to 12 months.

Many advertisers are not going
to be able to weather the storm.

You know, their budgets are too low

or they don’t have room for error.

and Facebook’s tracking is
not going to be targeting,

it’s not going to be favorable
to them and it’s going to hurt.

So as a result, you could
see advertisers stop ads

and move those dollars elsewhere.

And if that happens CPMs will fall

and there’ll be lower competition.

And that may actually
offset the negative impact

of Facebook’s targeting.

It’s very possible that that happens.

We kind of saw that at the
beginning of the Corona virus

in March of 2020, March and April,

where lots of advertisers left the auction

the Facebook auction in particular here

and you know, you saw that if
you’re still in the auction,

your CPMs dropped pretty
pretty dramatically

to a tune of 25%.

And that put all your
downstream metrics got better

as a result, right?

You know, that’s going to
hurt Facebook’s revenue,

so shareholders be aware,
this is on financial advice,

some need to consider it, to consider.

We’re going to see new ad
placements and formats be introduced

and come out on new ad platforms
as well I imagine, right?

Pinterest has been doing some
really interesting updates

to their ad self-serve ad platform

and the way the users
experience those ads as well.

Most advertisers they’re
going to you know,

need to diversify, right?

YouTube is right now kind
of a wild wild Westish area

and CPMs over there are going to triple

over the next three years,
that’s our prediction.

First party data is going to
become more and more important,

you’re already hearing this

as it pertains to third-party
cookies going away

on Chrome browser in the next two years

and it’s going to become
kind of mission critical

to own your user’s data
particularly email address,

you know, most likely is and,
you know, having some kind

of experience web app,
experience that incentivizes them

or otherwise encourages the
user to sign up with you

and trade their email address
for some kind of value,

so to speak, you’re going to want that

because first party data
is going to become more

and more important as
third-party data starts

to be restricted, shut
down and even go away.

And if that happens you
know, platforms like Google

and Apple and other big tech
stocks are going to battle

for the future of advertising
tracking and targeting,

you know cookies are going to be obsolete.

Trade desk is they have a
unified ID, 2.0 type thing,

that’s going to become the standard,

this is our projection, right?

Trade desk will not monetize it

but they’re going to be
kind of the go-to platform

for programmatic media
buying and that the strengths

of the universal ID is going
to be that unique positioning

in their block, in their platform

in their media buying and
CTV and OTT space as well,

connected TV and over the top
for streaming, advertising

on the streaming platforms,
if you’re not familiar.

So again, not stock advice,
not financial advice,

these are public companies
that we are talking about

but you know,

this is just what we see
happening in the industry.

And these are our predictions.

And, you know, as we saw
with GDPR and CCPA, you know,

they were really big
deals when they came out

and things have kind of normalized

to a new standard, to a new
level and I think that’s similar

to what you’re going to
see here with the IOS 14.

One way or another we’re
on a roller coaster.

This is an industry that changes
faster than your underwear.

Hopefully your underwear
changes really quickly

and you know, buckle up ’cause
this is just the beginning.

It’s fun you know, changes
the only constant like I said

and hopefully this was a helpful podcast.

If it was share with a
friend, like it, comment,

let me know what you’re
doing, what are you seeing?

What are you planning on doing?

I would love to talk
about this kind of stuff

and we’ll share our insights as well.

I have, and we’ll put it in the show notes

a link to this PDF.

And if you’re on YouTube,
you can just read the URL

and type it in if you like,
but I’ll give it to you there.

And thank you for listening.

Hope this is not a big deal for you.

And you can just go on your merry day

and everything is normal and
your ad campaigns don’t suffer.

But if they do, you’re not alone.

Thanks for listening, take care.

Want more details now? Download the iOS 14 whitepaper.

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