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Facebook IOS 14 Update: How Will it Affect Your Ads?

Unless you have been hiding under a rock the past months, you have probably heard about the Facebook ios 14 update for Apple devices. This update is coming with big changes to tracking permissions that will be impacting how you can run your Facebook ads. 

Facebook claims no less than 40% of US digital advertising revenue. As such, it is likey a large part of your digital marketing strategy. When changes come, you need to know about them, and how to adapt so that they have a minimal impact on your bottom line. 

In this article, we will cover everything we know so far about how the Facebook ios 14 update will affect your advertising, what metrics will be kept, and how you will need to adapt accordingly.

Facebook IOS 14 Update: What We Know 

The main focus of the IOS 14 update is privacy. The way data can be collected and for what reasons is being drilled down. 

With the new update, we know that Facebook users will now be able to go to the app’s product page and discover what personal data is being collected and for what purpose. 

This update may seem harmless enough to advertisers (and a great relief to users), however, the additional feature that Facebook advertisers need to be more concerned with is permissions. 

With the IOS 14 update, advertisers will now be required to have permission from the user to track their data and have access to their devices advertising identifier. 

But what does this really mean for advertisers? Well, the way Apple has worked their update means that it’s not so simple for users to give their permission. You can’t simply bury permissions in your privacy policy anymore. 

For a long time data permission, especially those on Facebook have worked on an opt-out method. When you use the app your settings are automatically configured in a form that allows data collection. If you chose not to give permissions you have the ability to do this, but you have to actively change your settings. 

This method worked in favour of advertisers, as most users don’t bother to opt-out. However, the opt-in changes how users behave because it requires them to actively make the decision for their data to be collected. One study, conducted after the GDPR privacy laws were introduced in Europe, showed that 29% of users would opt-in to emails and other messages, compared with 51% who say they would not opt-out.

How Do Users Opt-In?

The big question you are probably wondering is with the Facebook IOS 14 update how do users opt-in for Facebook tracking? 

From now on, all apps on IOS, when opened, will appear with a prompt. The prompt will give the options for allowing tracking or disabling tracking. With so many privacy scandals revolving around personal data, and a mistrust that has built, we can expect to see large numbers of users who were previously opted-in for tracking to revoke those permissions.

The War For Your Data

Where did this sudden change come from? What has motivated Apple to change its privacy policy? Well, the change is not that sudden. If you have been paying attention to Apples policies and branding over the past few years, you will have noticed they have moved more towards presenting themselves as a privacy company.

It is a valid point, that many apps, such as Facebook collect large, and often unnecessary amounts of data on their users. However, Apple’s intentions behind their IOS 14 update, may not be so noble. 

Tech companies are at war for your data. Apple has a clear disadvantage in revenue from companies such as Facebook or Google as they are not monetizing their user data. Now they are fighting back by putting in restrictions that will make it more difficult for Facebook or Google to collect this data, and in turn, this could cost these companies billions of dollars in ad revenue.

Prohibited Data Collection

With the IOS14 update, Facebook will have some reporting limitations. Your once microscopically detailed view of every aspect of your audience may become a little more blurry.

Some of the biggest changes you will notice include:

Reporting data may be delayed for up to 3 days. 

28-day attribution is no longer supported in any form. 

7-day view-through attribution will be removed.

Advertisers will be able to create audiences based on geographic and demographic segments, however, they will no longer have access to reporting based on these segments.

Facebook Metrics That Will Still Be Available

Yes, you are going to lose some data and the microscopic view of everything related to your audience, but it’s not all doom and gloom. There is plenty of data you will still be able to view. 

Website Sessions

You will still be able to track website session data when users visit your site. All the data your site collects from things such as where users drop off on their buyer journey to what products are in their cart, you will still have access to.

Social Traffic

You will still be able to track traffic sources to your site. You will know how much traffic on your site came from Facebook.

Key Analytics

Many important metrics will still be available. Some of the most valuable analytics you will still be able to view include; CPM, CPC, CTR

The Importance of CRM Data in Your Digital Marketing Strategy

Updates such as the IOS 14, shine a clear light on the fact that advertisers are heavily reliant on third-party platforms. There are businesses out there, and yours may be one of them, who drive the majority of its sales through one medium, such as Facebook ads.

But what happens if one day Facebook shuts down? Your business may just disappear with it. Over the next few years, the importance of businesses having your own data, their own platforms, and multiple channels of marketing will only grow. 

If your business is doing any type of digital marketing, you should have a CRM system. Whenever a user makes a purchase, signs up for an email newsletter, downloads a lead magnet, their data should be stored in your CRM. 

From your CRM data, you can pull information that will show you the big-picture trends and review information you may be losing from Facebook. Keeping your own database of user information that your customers have consented to improves trust with consumers and can help you deliver improved marketing strategies without having to rely on third party analytics. You can track users through the stages of your sales funnel and sales on your e-commerce sites. Your CRM will, in future, be the place you go to to get the full story on your users data.

Preparing for the Facebook IOS14 Update

We aren’t going to sugar coat it. This update is not good news for advertisers. However, it is also not the end of the world. While you will likely see some difficulties in targeting, which in turn will make your ads less effective, there are some steps you can take to minimize the impact of the update.

•   Verify your domain: This is always a good idea to have and Facebook are suggesting that advertisers have domain verification in place. The process is simple and even if it only helps a little bit, worth doing.

•   Breakdown your reports: Start understanding how much of your traffic/purchase/leads come from IOS devices to have a better understanding of how much you may be impacted.

•   Focus on building your own database: Increase your efforts to collect user email addresses so you do not need to rely so heavily on Facebook for retargeting.

To Sum Up

The Facebook IOS 14 update is not the end of days for successful social media ads, but it will make audience targeting and tracking user data much more difficult. With the mistrust between consumers and big tech companies, along with numerous privacy scandals, restrictions on collecting data is something we should all have seen coming. As these restrictions become tighter and new laws are put in place over coming years, it is more important than ever for businesses to have their own database of customers that they use for ad targeting and retargeting. 

Need some help adjusting your Facebook Ad strategy in accordance with the new IOS update? Get in touch with us today and receive a free ads auditing!

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