If you read newspapers daily or keep tabs on online news, you must have come across news articles about the Facebook-Apple feud over privacy. Well, both the tech giants have their arguments. And some people find Facebook’s narrative logical, while others believe Apple’s stand is right. However, small business owners are worried about the future of advertising amid Facebook vs. Apple fight.
In today’s article, we will explore how advertising will change if it changes after implementing iOS 14’s AppTracking. But let’s explore some background first.
What is iOS 14’s AppTrackingTransparency?
Under the new AppTracking Transparency policy, App developers will have to ask users of iOS 14, iPad OS 14, and tvOS 14 for their permission to track them on apps and websites owned by other companies.
Before iOS 14’s AppTrackingTransparency, Facebook and all other App developers could track users’ activities on other websites and apps owned by other companies without asking permission from users.
Why Facebook Is Upset
Facebook has been criticizing Apple’s decision to prompt iOS users to disable apps from tracking their personal data. Even Facebook published full-page ads in The Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and The Washington Post, voicing against Apple’s privacy changes. Facebook termed Apple’s move against the spirit of small businesses.
Facebook sells ads on social media websites and apps. Ad sales are the primary source of income for Facebook. The social media giant offers businesses the capability to reach their exact audiences. Needless to says, Facebook ads are the most targeted form of advertising.
In the core of the effectiveness of Facebook ads lies users’ data tracking. Facebook and its applications track users’ behavior on other websites, enabling them to serve users with personalized ads.
With Apple’s recent move on data privacy, Facebook has to ask permission from users to track them on other websites and apps the company doesn’t own. Facebook is fearful that users will disable Facebook and its apps to track data from other apps and websites once users are shown a prompt. This will affect Facebook ad revenue.
Dan Levy, VP Ads and Business Products at Facebook said in his blog post,
Yes, there will be an impact to Facebook’s diversified ads business, but it will be much less than what will befall small businesses, and we’ve already been factoring this into our expectations for the business.
Apple’s Statement on Facebook’s Criticism
Apple iOS 14’s AppTrackingTransparency has been appreciated by privacy advocates.
Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook, said in his response that Facebook could track users as before, but it should ask users permission first. Here is the official statement from Apple’s CEO.
We believe users should have the choice over the data that is being collected about them and how it’s used. Facebook can continue to track users across apps and websites as before, App Tracking Transparency in iOS 14 will just require that they ask for your permission first. pic.twitter.com/UnnAONZ61I
— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) December 17, 2020
Future of Small Business Advertising
Facebook published two full-page newspaper ads, stating that Apple’s move is against millions of small businesses in the United States. Going by the Facebook campaign, it seems like a doomsday scenario for small businesses. But what is the reality?
No, it is not doomsday for small businesses. Privacy is a fundamental right of the people, and Apple made the right move.
With the latest privacy update in iOS14, Facebook will be able to track less on mobile devices. As a result, it will impact on conversion, tracking, optimization, and targeting of Facebook ads. Also, Facebook Audience Network will also get a hit. The quantum of impact cannot be calculated right now.
How can you prepare your small business for Facebook ads? Well, Facebook is taking steps to prepare its partners for iOS14. You can check the details here.
Alternatively, you should try to explore other options to promote your business. 62% of small business owners say Facebook ads miss their targets. So relying entirely on Facebook is not a smart decision.
As a small business owner, if you want to stay top of your marketing game, you should diversify your marketing plan.
Here are some economical yet effective small business marketing strategies you can explore.
- Email marketing
- Search engine optimization
- Community promotion
- Optimize Google My Business listing
- Grow organic social real
- In-event promotion