How will Apple’s iOS 14.5 update impact my PPC ad campaigns?
On April 27, 2021, Apple released its iOS 14.5 update, ushering in a new set of default internet privacy settings that should impact how digital advertisers can operate and track the user.
The changes will give users the option to opt out of sharing unique identifiers (things that track what you see and do online) at the app level, which impacts the level of marketing insights that users give to apps that show ads. like Facebook and Instagram.
Will these apps continue to serve ads? Yes of course.
But will targeting be as smart if Facebook isn’t allowed to know so much about you? Maybe not, but there is still power in the product.
Some estimates suggest that up to 80% of users will choose to block unique identifiers. Now that’s the worst case scenario and ignores all the other smart information brands like Facebook will have about you even without knowing your internet history – like your email, phone number and friends.
How do iOS 14.5 changes impact PPC digital ad campaigns?
One change we’re noticing within the digital advertising team at S3 Advertising is the decrease in audience size. This is due to the Tailored Audiences we use when targeting customer campaigns – for example, high earners interested in luxury vacations – not including people on iOS 14.5 and above.
Another impact is on which conversions (such as your sales and leads) are attributed as a result of your PPC campaign and which are not. Less tracking means less ability to connect the campaign to the result. However, it is important to say that the result will always be there.
S3’s statistical modeling PPC reporting methods will still accurately attribute conversions to our campaigns, but some will slip through the net. However, you’ll probably notice conversions from another area of your marketing increasing – these users will likely have been driven to buy by our PPC campaigns, so together as client and agency we’ll just have to be handy in attributing them to the good part of your marketing mix.
Third, data lag is still a factor when reporting and we are seeing more delays in reporting some results. Low opt-in rates can mean difficulties for advertisers.
It also means that we are limited in what we can measure, which is why the digital team at S3 prepared for this well in advance by creating the aggregate measurement of events. This supports the advertiser’s efforts to maintain privacy while running effective campaigns.
Finally, the changes limit the number of Facebook tracking points you can have on a website.
Only eight Facebook conversion events from a single website domain can exist. A domain with multiple Facebook conversions should be adjusted for updates.
This is of course a blow for Facebook, which has announced the phasing out of some of its products, which will complicate the measurement for advertisers. This will ultimately mean that we will have to find new solutions to track efficiency.
However, it will allow us, as a digital agency, to be more focused on what we optimize websites for – it makes us think about the most important signs a user might consider converting with us, and put our common resources for this. smarter campaigns.
Where else have privacy changes impacted the digital advertising industry?
Recently, Google also took a step towards privacy, setting out a clear trend in big tech. They’ve made changes that will see them – and much of the internet – begin to move away from third-party tracking, the practice of using packaged and sold datasets to inform your campaigns.
Their reasoning? That ads should work for everyone. This includes publishers, advertisers and, most importantly, consumers. The removal of third-party tracking from Google’s ad buying tools means that users of these platforms will now be more dependent on Google itself for audience measurement and targeting (a smart move for Google, some would say).
The overall picture is that third-party data sources are becoming less and less relevant. As trackers are blinded, first-party quality data (which is earned rather than bought) and audience modeling will grow in importance – as will collaborative datasets where legally possible.
Is everything catastrophic for advertisers?
PPC advertising and digital targeting are still extremely powerful tools in a marketing box. Even without knowing all the little things you’ve done online, the fact is that the internet will still know a lot about the users surfing it – and used correctly and responsibly, that information can be valuable in helping to connect products and services to people who I want them.
Ultimately, preserving privacy and performance will protect the future of advertising. Advertising agencies, marketers and digital specialists just need to prepare for it.
And at S3, we do just that. Take a look below at the three key recommendations we give our clients to respond to change and keep their campaigns sustainable.
Overcoming the Impact of Apple and Google Privacy Changes on PPC Campaigns
Your brand message needs to stay strong, so invest in building it through bold, multi-channel ad campaigns. It’s important to keep in mind that even if market users of your product or service don’t immediately receive an advertisement for it, they know who you are and will come to you. Additionally, throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, we have noticed that maintaining brand presence is vital for businesses. A good brand will ensure that brand sustainability is built into its marketing plan, no matter what happens in the future.
This is something S3 Managing Partner Becky recently wrote on LinkedIn, emphasizing the importance of building a good creative brand:
Keep your ad agency up to date on your internal results (such as sales or enquiries). Even if conversions are no longer tracked through PPC campaigns due to people opting in to tracking, they will still convert. Having a more complete picture of how our campaigns affect your business will allow us to understand what is working and help us plan changes to our campaigns to make them even better for you. If you expect to have more than eight conversions, let your agency know well in advance and we can plan and prioritize.
Joe McMullen is Head of Digital Operations at S3 Advertising.