There has been a lot of talk about the iOS 14 update and how it will impact online marketing. If you work at a Facebook advertising agency, you have probably spent some time trying to figure out how it will affect your campaigns.
If you are new to this discussion, it centres around new privacy policies that will go into effect with phones that run on iOS 14. Most notably, the fact that there will be an opt-in prompt with all third-party apps. This means that users will need to opt-in to allow apps to track their activities. For an advertising ecosystem that largely depends on user data, this is going the way ads work.
For businesses that rely on Facebook ads, understanding these changes will be important. Here is a brief overview of some of these new policies and how they will impact Facebook ad campaigns.
Limitations for Mobile Web Advertising
One of the policies is to prevent cross-site tracking. In the past, if an iPhone user clicked on an ad that directed them to a website in a browser, the user would be identifiable through a cookie that had a device or user ID. Since this is no longer allowed, it will make web attribution a little more difficult.
To support developers and provide some data, Apple developed the Private Click Measurement (PCM) protocol. While this will provide some level of attribution, some of the data will be lost. You will get a report, but some of the identifying information will not be there. As an example, it might be difficult to connect a conversion to a specific ad click or you might not be able to see all of the demographic information associated with clicks.
With that said, Facebook is developing tools like Aggregate Events Measurement to help provide some clarity for advertisers.
Challenges for App Advertising
The changes will also affect app advertising campaigns. In another move to protect user privacy, Apple introduced the SKAdNetwork API. Under this framework, instead of being able to get the granular data on a campaign, Apple collects the data and reports it to the advertiser in aggregate.
Using this tool to gather information, you can get a report with data aggregated at the campaign level. You can then use statistical modelling to get an idea of what the results would be at the level of the ad set or the individual ad. Furthermore, event data will be limited to a maximum of nine campaigns and each campaign will only be allowed five ad sets.
This will also have an impact on the reporting of ad data. Not only will there be restrictions on the data that can be reported, but there may be significant delays in the time the data is reported. This will result in fewer conversion events being reported and a delay in your ability to react and adapt to the data that is available.
Fewer Optimization Options
You will also be limited to eight events per pixel for optimization. This means that you will need to determine the events that matter most to your campaigns and make the adjustments in the Ads Manager.
This will definitely create some inconvenience around optimization, and as more people choose to opt-out of tracking, it will have an impact on retargeting. This could increase the value of custom audiences based on lists.
These changes are relatively new, and the entire impact has yet to be fully understood. Advertisers will develop strategies to account for these changes, and Facebook is going to continue to develop tools to make the experience more effective.