How IOS Impacted Facebook Advertising

Last year, the iOS 14.5 update had an impact on people’s Facebook advertising. The update limited third-party data and tracking as part of an effort to promote user privacy. It changed how third-party ads are delivered and the collection of users’ personal data. Consequently, CPMs have gone up, performance has changed, there have been new challenges for audience targeting and the acquisition of data has shifted.

Advertisers have had to rethink their strategies to comply with these new changes. Here’s how iOS has impacted Facebook advertising and what it means for you.
June 28, 2024
12 MIN

New challenges

Some common challenges have emerged in the wake of Apple’s iOS 14.5 update. Here are the most prominent ones:

  • Cost per reach (CPR): This has increased as more users have chosen to block marketing tactics.
  • Prolonged learning phase: It now takes a bit longer to reach an efficient spending mode, thanks to conversion events limited in reporting, tracking and opt-outs.
  • Retargeting: Audience sizing has declined as opt-ins have decreased.
  • ROAS Attribution: The identification of ROAS has been made more difficult by the changes to attribution and conversion reporting.

As a result of this, there has been a shift in focus towards being more adaptable. Businesses have taken up the following strategies to try and keep their social campaigns going:

  • Executing Market Lift Tests to understand what impact their Facebook advertising is having.
  • Evaluating attribution and trends across different channels to see if one is causing problems with another.
  • Testing third-party data to offset loss of signal in Facebook.
  • Establishing retargeting campaigns on Facebook, optimised towards Landing Page View (LPV).
  • Working with partners to connect with target audiences and developing bespoke first-party data assets.

Trends in audiences

One of the most significant changes we have seen since iOS 14.5 appeared is the ways advertisers reach their audiences. Retargeting has become something that has to be carefully considered. This is because although link click-through rates (LCTRs) have increased, there has been a drop in overall audience size when retargeting for those engaging with content.

Costs have risen as well. CRM and first-party data may well be a high-value audience, but access to this audience comes at a premium. Advertisers have looked to more value-based customers, seeking out lookalike audiences. This can expand reach, but it has also further increased the cost per reach.

Paradigm shift

With the popularity of Apple devices and the embracing of the new privacy features of iOS 14.5, it seems the trend is only going to continue. This is disappointing for advertisers, and it now makes first-party data a particularly valuable asset for brands.

Through first-party data, marketers can develop a stronger understanding of their audience’s preferences. This information informs personalisation choices and helps with things like relationship building and developing successful direct response ads.

It can be challenging to create your own first-party asset. This is particularly true for brands that don’t have direct relationships with their customers. One solution might be to partner with organisations that can carry out surveys for the cultivation of first-party, permission-based data. These can include attributes selected by the brands themselves, and they can be addressable throughout the major marketing channels.

Other tips to consider

  • Narrow the conversion window: By optimising your Facebook campaigns for a shorter conversion window, purchases made soon after clicking an ad will be attributed much quicker.
  • Focus on value: Facebook allows you to optimise for value rather than conversion. This will lead the algorithm to focus on finding people who are likely to spend more, helping to maximise the ROI for your campaigns.
  • Enhance the user experience: Customers like not having to follow too many steps to make a purchase, and you can make this happen with Facebook’s Checkout Experience.
  • Diversify: Try taking a cross-platform approach to broaden your audience reach.

The bottom line

Brands have been forced to change the way they advertise since the arrival of Apple’s iOS 14.5 update. Advertisers must be more strategic in the way they target customers, create leads and measure conversions. Things like testing and reporting have become even more important than they were before, and developing partnerships with the right agencies is a make-or-break step along the road.

Veritas Digital can help your business make the most of your Facebook advertising campaigns in the presence of iOS 14.5. Our team of expert digital marketers is on hand to offer guidance and take control of your advertising to ensure you get the best possible results every time.

Lachie Pior


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