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Facebook iOS 14 Changes To Advertising Data And What It Means For You

It may seem quite daunting to your business, especially if you run advertising campaigns on platforms like Facebook, which largely rely on these data points in order to serve optimised advertisements that are actually useful to your prospective clients.

Facebook iOS 14 Changes To Advertising Data And What It Means For You

With the recent update to Apple’s iOS14.5, users have been afforded the opportunity to opt-out of advertising data collection in all of their apps. Whilst this is great for the end-user, it makes your life as a business more difficult. With 96% of users running iOS14.5 or later opting out of ad tracking, it’s important you understand how this affects your business and the changes to ad optimisation and targeting

So What's New About iOS14.5?

While some platforms like Facebook have taken big shots at Apple for implementing an opt-out ad-tracking service, it’s not as doom and gloom as they are making it out to be. More often than not, it just means you will need to make some changes to your digital marketing strategy. Which is why at Mensa Marketing we are here to help you ensure that your digital advertising is still effective and you receive accurate data for your future marketing campaigns. 

The main change is that iPhone users running iOS14.5 or later will be delivered a prompt each time they use an app, website, or other platforms that run third-party trackers. This prompt will ask users whether they want to “Allow” or “Don’t Allow” data-tracker points like, generalised location data, email addresses or website engagement (among other tracker points). 

It may seem quite daunting to your business, especially if you run advertising campaigns on platforms like Facebook, which largely rely on these data points in order to serve optimised advertisements that are actually useful to your prospective clients. However, these changes are not as dramatic or life-changing for your business as some platforms are making them out to be. 

Changes In Mobile Web Advertising

The biggest change to mobile web advertising for Facebook ad campaigns is a new limit on the number of ‘events’ you can run on each domain. What does this mean? Basically the Facebook ‘Pixel’ the key method of data collection for advertising campaigns will have an eight event cap per pixel. This means that each advertiser is only able to use eight conversion events per domain for optimization.

For example, a conversion event could be: visiting a website, adding an item to the cart, a purchase request, form submission, clicking your business's phone number, or a custom event. So you must be mindful of each ‘event’ and how important it is to your business. Whilst this is a cap towards the number of events you can optimise towards, it does not cap the events you make for reporting and audience creation.

Changes To Optimisation And Targeting

The biggest change to optimization and targeting is that conversions made by users who have opted out of targeting tracking on iOS14.5 will not be tracked. Meaning that as an advertiser you should expect and anticipate lower conversions in your advertising reports. Expecting lower conversions especially in Month-over-Month (MoM) and Year-over-Year (YoY) results. Additionally, due to lower levels of Facebook-pixel tracking for iOS users, you will have less data to use and therefore less ability to optimise your ads for specific audiences. If you are a small business that has access to less data points, this will affect you more-so than a larger business. 

However at Mensa Marketing we have unique solutions that will ensure your business is able to generate successful and useful advertising campaigns on Facebook. With our understanding of the changes to iOS14.5 and its implications for Facebook advertising, we are able to work around these limitations and ensure that your advertising campaigns are high-quality.

Impact On Audiences

The biggest impact on audiences is that generally they will see less targeted advertising and see more general advertising. This is a consequence of a number of protocols that Apple has implemented with iOS14.5. Amongst these is the ‘SKAdNetwork’ API. An API (Application Programming Interface) is an intermediary within software that allows two applications to talk to each other. So, for example, if you are using the Facebook app and you click an ad that redirects you to the Safari web-browser, that is taking advantage of an API (since it is allowing the Facebook app and the Safari app to communicate with each other).​ This is the key API that affects advertising on Facebook (as well as other apps). This API is responsible for restricting, aggregating, or delaying all app event data (like purchases, adding items to a cart, amongst others). 

This will also affect campaign management, as through this API event data is restricted to a maximum of nine campaigns and five ad sets per campaign (for every Facebook Ads account). 

This means that the audience will receive more generalised advertising broadly speaking, however, at Mensa Marketing we have intimate knowledge of these API’s and how it affects iOS14.5 (and later) users in particular. Due to our expertise, we will still be able to ensure that your advertising campaigns reach your desired audience and you receive rich and useful data.

Delivery And Reporting Changes

Due to changes to delivery and reporting, your data will be subject to a three-day delay on data that is coming from iOS14.5 users. This is due to a specific protocol implemented by Apple called ‘Private Click Measurement’ or PCM. This means that your reporting data will have a slight delay as real-time reporting is no longer possible. For example, say an iOS14.5 user is served an ad on Facebook for plumbing services. The user clicks the ad, and is then taken to a web-browser to complete a purchase and they complete that purchase. Due to the implementation of PCM this purchase ‘event’ will be lost, and can not be properly attributed, meaning that you will lose out on that data. However, due to changes made by Facebook through the Aggregated Event Management and our expert understanding of these new protocols, we will still be able to properly attribute this sale. 

Some other minor changes include the “Value Optimisation” tool, which has been shifted over to ‘Events Manager’. However, this change does not affect most advertisers as the ‘Value Optimisation’ tool is only used by a relatively minor number of advertisers. 

Additionally, there have been some changes made to attribution windows. For example, the 28-day click through, 28-day view-through, and 7-day view through, attribution windows are no longer supported for iOS14.5 users. Instead they have been replaced by a standard 7-day click-through attribution window. Whilst this will affect you - since you are unable to as accurately follow your users - this is not as dramatic as it sounds. Largely because Mensa Marketing has a number of strategies in place to ensure that you still receive rich and relevant data.

The Mensa Marketing Solution

Apple has, for the past few years, clearly announced its changes to user privacy and application tracking. So, we have been able to prepare for any changes that it may implement into iOS. Despite many at Facebook claiming that this is ‘the death of Facebook advertising as we know it’, this is not the case. Largely many of these issues can be mitigated, due to our expert understanding of how Facebook marketing campaigns work for iPhone users. Therefore, you can rest assured that when you run a marketing campaign with Mensa Marketing you will be receiving a high-quality, highly-targeted, and highly-effective campaign. We have expert knowledge in ensuring that the ‘events’ you now track are the best events for your business to track. Furthermore some changes made by Apple are even beneficial for you as an advertiser, especially the retargeting conversion pool. Whilst it used to be 28 days, this has now been reduced to 7 days. Whilst it may sound like you would always want more time for retargeting, the new 7 day window is actually better, as it is more likely that your ad will be ‘fresher’ in your audiences’ mind. 

At Mensa Marketing we have helped thousands of Australian small businesses like yours increase their growth and attract new customers. We always provide expert tracking know-how and rich data-driven creativity, which will elevate your digital marketing strategy to the next level. We have extensive experience in social media marketing, and we specialise in tying together your social media presence and your business objectives. With our unified strategy across content, social media, brand awareness, social setup, affiliate marketing, content creation, and marketing audits, you can be confident in our ability to elevate your business! 

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