Digital marketing

A look at iOS 15 and its impact on marketing strategies

A look at iOS 15 and its impact on marketing strategies


PHOTO: misu

Big tech companies like Apple and Google are notorious for making updates to their systems that leave marketers scrambling to adjust their advertising and marketing strategies. On June 7, Apple announced the latest update for iPhone, iOS 15. As usual, Apple made consumer-facing updates, promising new features that improve FaceTime, offering weather overhauls and UI updates that make it easier to manage notifications. .

However, the update also comes with a few changes that marketers should be aware of, especially when it comes to user privacy. We spoke to marketing experts to learn more about these latest updates and their impact on marketers.

Apple’s latest privacy updates

iOS15 provides enhanced privacy controls, including Mail Privacy Protection, a feature that prevents email senders from knowing whether or not an email has been opened. It also hides the recipient’s IP address so that their location remains unknown, essentially removing tracking pixels in emails and badly affecting open rates.

Erinne Mejia, Senior Director of Product Management in Atlanta, Georgia Acousticexplains that “when users download the update and choose to ‘Protect Mail Activity’, Apple automatically loads images and CSS, so it looks like the email has been opened.

Ultimately, this change means open rates are likely to be heavily inflated. “Any user who accepts email privacy protection will appear to open any third-party emails they receive,” adds Emad Hasan, founder and CEO of Santa Monica, Calif. Retina AI.

However, some other changes will impact how marketers can measure campaign effectiveness with restrictions imposed on access to IDs. “For example, Safari’s Smart Tracking Prevention will mask the user’s IP address, reducing the ability of advertising platforms to use only users’ fingerprints,” said San Mateo chief revenue officer Josh Wetzel. , in California. A signal.

Users will also be able to hide their email addresses using the Hide My Email feature. In this case, Apple users may generate random email addresses when signing up to an app or website. The information they choose to receive is sent to their personal account, but the website will not have access to their actual email address.

Related article: How Apple and Google’s tracking rules affect advertisers and marketers

The impact on marketers

Clearly, with inflated email rates, email marketing as we know it is likely to change significantly. Once considered a key metric to indicate the success of your email marketing campaign, open rates will effectively become irrelevant. Therefore, marketers will need to make some adjustments.

“In the short term, the privacy changes in iOS 15 will accelerate the move from display to lifecycle marketing. Marketers will become even more reliant on the first point of contact with a new customer,” Wetzel believes. This change is essentially just the start of an even greater focus on user privacy options for consumers. Wetzel explains that any channel that relies on third-party data to target and personalize emails will continue to degrade, making it harder to acquire new users.

In line with measuring the lifetime value of a customer, metrics such as click-through rates and conversions will become even more important as the reliability of open rates decreases. Seasoned email marketers were already using these metrics to determine the effectiveness of their campaigns, but now they will become increasingly targeted as the iOS15 rollout continues.

So how can marketers adapt?

Related article: Apple IDFA: Everything Marketers Need to Know

Focus on customer retention

As these privacy changes are just the beginning, marketers will need to find ways to adapt their strategies to deal with these upcoming changes. “To thrive in the future, marketers will need to make significant shifts to focus on retention. They will need to adapt to lifecycle efforts,” suggests Wetzel.

Businesses will need to deliver tremendous value to their audiences to get them to provide the private information and focus on retaining the customers they already have, rather than trying to round up new customers at every turn. Wetzel expects top brands to focus their efforts on increasing customer loyalty through add-ons and subscription models.

Leverage Zero Party Data

Essentially, marketers will have to work harder to get their users to opt in to receiving emails from them. “Marketers should refocus their strategies on contextual data and zero-party data to effectively target and engage consumers,” echoes Mejia.

Zero-party data refers to information that consumers want to give you and expect you to use, and represents a unique opportunity for greater personalization. Rather than just bombarding customers with information they don’t want, you can show customers that you’re on their side and respect the data they’ve given you. Some ways to collect this zero-party data include inviting them to participate in surveys and quizzes. For emails, marketers can provide a preference center where customers can choose precisely the types of emails they want to receive, whether promotional, informational, or simply related to their account. This can go a long way in earning your consumers’ trust and continuing to receive accurate data.