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How To Navigate Facebook Ads Post IOS 14

Updated: May 4, 2022

IOS 14 brought on quite a few changes to digital marketing. To be more specific, Facebook marketing went through some changes in their privacy settings and changed the relationship that companies have with Facebook users.

The changes implemented with the new update restrict third-party companies from tracking data through Facebook users. When opening the app, Facebook will provide users with an opt-in prompt that allows them to choose if they want their data to be tracked by other companies, apps, and websites.

The Official Prompt Users Are Seeing Is As Follows:

Most users will see this and immediately choose “Ask App not to Track”, as it seems like a safer option, even if they will not receive advertisements and offers that could be beneficial to them.

This article will cover all the new policies that will affect Facebook ads and how to keep your company afloat despite the setbacks from these policies.

How App Advertising Has Changed

Back in 2018, Apple introduced an application programming interface called “SKAdNetwork”. SKAdNetwork is a concept that increases the privacy of users using certain mobile apps. In early last year, this concept was just that, a concept; now in 2021 this is a reality and has a bigger effect on digital marketing than any other application before.

This program is being used by Facebook for app advertising on all devices with IOS 14, which is over half a billion phones. Usage of this program restricts, aggregates, or delays all app event data.

Before, there was almost no limit on campaign management and ads per campaign. Now, however, this program sets a limit on event data. For example, when considering campaign management, data will be restricted and result in a maximum of 9 campaigns and five ad sets per campaign for each account using Facebook Ads.

The program also resulted in a lot of delays regarding incidents. Reporting of events will be delayed for 1-3 days after the installation of an app.

How Mobile Web Advertising Has Changed

The SKAdNetwork application affects ads in a severe way, but it is not the only application that will change how you approach your Facebook ads. With the update, Apple also implemented a Private Click Measurement (PCM) protocol for web attribution. This PCM contributes to restricting data that businesses and third parties can access. This means that instead of being able to access a user’s interests, for example, this program will restrict you from being able to see these things.

Let's Look At A Scenario:

An IOS 14 user is shown an ad on Instagram and is then taken to a website to complete their purchase. Before PCM, the advertiser could see all of this information and be able to analyze it and further use it to their advantage. Now, because of PCM, this event would be lost and an advertiser would not be able to properly attribute this.

This makes studying your analytics even more difficult. Without being able to see all the specific transaction statistics and events, seeing what ads create the most traffic and which ones don’t is more difficult as not everything is tracked.

Difficulty in tracking doesn’t stop there; Tracking users in different geographical areas will also be more of a challenge. If there are discrepancies with which website gets accessed and where the website is being accessed from, the purchase will not be properly tracked.

For example, if a user from South America sees your advertisement, clicks on it, and is then redirected to the South American version of the company rather than the North American company, this purchase will not be tracked. This is especially hard to work around if your products sell overseas just as well as nationally.

Let’s say you are running ads for a company based in Canada that also has outlets in Europe. If your Canadian-based ads reach users in Europe and they are then directed to the European outlet instead of the Canadian one, this won’t be tracked, even though it was your ad they clicked on, not the European one.

How To Prepare And Combat These Changes.

There are a few ways to directly prepare and combat these changes. Well, focus on steps you can take now so the changes don’t mess with your operations as well as steps you can take now since these changes have already been implemented.

Some steps you should have taken and can still take now would be to verify your domains and decide which 8 events for conversions to track.

Verifying your domains with Facebook means you’re officially set up on their platform. Some ways to verify your domains with Facebook would be to add a DNS TXT entry to your DNS record, which confirms that you are the owner of a specific domain. Verifying your domains ensures that only verified owners of such domains can edit the way content can appear. This essentially provides a way for you to claim ownership of your domain in Business Manager.

When reviewing these changes, you’ll have to choose 8 events for conversions to track.

Facebook will automatically pre-assign events that they believe will be the most beneficial to your business, but you can change this. You can submit specific changes for pixels, events, and priority on your domains once every 72 hours. Like domain verification, this change needs to be initiated by the pixel owner, not any partners.

After going through some of these initial changes, if you are still receiving little to no traffic or not being able to track anything related to customers, there are other methods you can implement. These methods include focusing on strategic alliances with innovative data products and finding alternatives to basic cookie tracking.

Combatting these changes means you should use products like ‘clean rooms’. These provide advertisers with privacy and safe access to data for events tied to previous customers and user IDs.

Finding alternatives to basic cookie tracking will assist your Facebook marketing tremendously. Since Facebook blocks a lot of even tracking, you will need to facilitate retargeting by using different methods of tracking. Using specific identifiers to target customers, such as their email address or phone number, will allow you to view the events easier.

To do this efficiently, encourage site logins with online identifications, such as an email address login. This will give you more of access to view what your customers are doing on your site and the transition from Facebook to your landing page.

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