In June, Apple kicked a hornet’s nest when it announced that significant privacy changes would be coming with the release of the iOS 14 operating system. The privacy changes specifically dealt with the “identification for advertisers, or IDFA” code used by app developers to track user behaviors. Although still backburnered for the moment, the change is coming and will require a warning label to users prior to any collection of IDFA data on iOS 14, and will also require that users opt in to sharing IDFA.
IDFA has long been an essential targeting tool, and Facebook fundamentally relies on behavioral targeting for its advertising campaigns. An article from The Washington Post explains, “If Apple users opted out of IDFA tracking en masse, it would mean advertisers would be flying blind on iOS, where many of the most wealthy, and coveted, eyeballs in the United States spend a large amount of time.”
What Has Facebook Done In Response To IDFA Updates?
Facebook is rolling out a pop up to try to get ahead of the IDFA warning. The pop-up will appear before the IDFA warning, in an effort to convince users that opting in to IDFA offers a better “ads experience.”
Immediately after the Facebook pop-up appears, the IDFA warning label will follow. IDFA warnings include an area that advertisers can populate with customized and contextualized information, in an effort to sway users to opt in. The Facebook pop-ups were introduced in beta this week.
Why Is Facebook So Concerned About IDFA Updates?
Facebook asserts that the IDFA updates will impact businesses big and small. “Beyond hurting apps and websites, many in the small business community say this change will be devastating for them too, at a time when they face enormous challenges. Small businesses deserve to be heard. We're standing up to Apple for our small business customers and our communities,” read a full-page ad taken out by Facebook in December. Recently, Facebook warned investors about the impact of the impending change to IDFA. Snapchat had similar conversations with investors this week, as worries mount among tech platforms.
Should Advertisers Be Worried About Apple iOS 14 IDFA Updates Or The Facebook IDFA Pop Up?
No, at least not yet. There have been many privacy changes made through the years, and this is one more in the list. For now, everyone is encouraged to just sit back, wait and watch and not take proactive actions that could be detrimental to campaign performance.
Consumers have regularly shown the desire to opt in to sharing data when it benefits them, and customized ads are something consumers seem to appreciate. Facebook’s popup may be just enough for consumers to understand the value of the information they are providing. Or maybe not. Time will tell.
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