Apple recently announced their iOS14 update. With this update comes changes to how IDFAs (identifiers for advertisers) will be shared with apps. Now, users can choose to opt out of sharing their IDFA with individual apps — meaning apps won’t be able to track as many results of their advertising.
Facebook isn’t happy. Advertisers are worried. And brands are left wondering what this all means for their business.
We’re breaking down what we know right now about how Apple’s new privacy updates will affect your Facebook advertising, whether you’re an agency or a small business, and we’ll give some actionable tips to help you move forward!
With the iOS14 update, Apple has increased their focus on privacy. The tech giant is allowing users to opt out of tracking on apps such as Facebook, which will heavily impact advertising. This update comes as no surprise, as data privacy has become a national issue over the last few years.
If a user opts out of tracking for Facebook, you will only be able to track one conversion event. Attribution windows will be taken down as well. This will not only affect tracking, but also targeting.
This update affects how mobile apps (including iPad apps) track your information — technically, it affects app-to-web browsing. Likely, desktop and mobile browsers will not be affected.
Facebook has been incredibly vocal about disagreeing with the update. In a statement on their website, Facebook says, “We support proactive privacy measures and data transparency, but we don’t agree with Apple’s policy changes.”
In the future, this update could affect other advertising platforms, such as Pinterest, TikTok, and SnapChat. As of now, these apps will be affected minorly from this update. Additionally, we have not seen any effects of this announcement on Google. However, we are keeping a close eye on the platform, as this update could affect it down the road.
This update could also affect Android devices, even though they do not run on iOS. We do not have enough information on the widespread effects of this on other devices yet.
In addition, on January 19, the attribution window was cut down to a 7-day click — with no other default attribution. People who relied on 28-day click attribution (longer customer journey) can’t report on that any longer. If you do default to a 28-day click, you will see a decline in your ad manager because you’re looking at a much smaller attribution window. We have already seen the effects of this within the reporting platform.
Impact on Advertising
Anything that happens before you click off the ad — impression, reach, click, etc. — should all remain the same because you can see these metrics within Facebook’s reporting.
However, when a user goes to your website, that’s where the changes take effect.
Whereas previously you could track a user’s entire journey through multiple events — visit a product page, add to cart, initiate checkout, etc. — this iOS14 update only allows you to track one conversion event. You get to choose which event you want to track.
Most people will likely see a decrease in ROAS, but it will be unclear how accurate your data will be because you won’t know how many people will have opted out of your audience.
How to Move Forward
Regardless of how you personally feel about privacy and data sharing, there’s no doubt that this update will affect many brands who rely on advertising to sustain their business.
Every brand will need to rethink the way they report. Rethinking how we report metrics will be crucial, especially since mobile is one of the top drivers of revenue and traffic across the board — with our clients, we’ve seen mobile generate anywhere from 65–90% of traffic. Generation Z, especially, dominates mobile app traffic.
You’ll likely need to look at ROAS as a holistic number instead of just looking at it in a vacuum. Start looking at the digital ecosystem as a whole instead of relying on a single number to determine your success.
Advertising will still be a crucial part of many brands’ digital marketing strategies. Remember that not all people will turn off tracking, so you are still able to advertise successfully — you just won’t be able to see as much of the customer journey.
If you haven’t already, it’s also time to double down on your engaged audiences on social and email. These followers and subscribers are able to be marketed to without being impacted by the iOS14 update.
Want a team of experts to handle your Facebook advertising in the midst of these changes? Talk to the team at Blue Wheel today.