Digital Marketing Brief: Apple, Facebook, Cookies, and More
Catch up on what SEOs, SEMs, and Social gurus are chattering about, including: iOS 14 Privacy Updates, Facebook vs. Australia, the Death of the Cookie, and Clubhouse.
Why are Apple and Facebook Fighting? 🍎
Apple announced a slew of privacy-based iOS 14 updates that will have a major impact on conversion tracking on Facebook and other advertising channels.
- Preparing Our Partners for iOS 14 (Facebook for Business)
Facebook was quick to respond when these changes were announced in June 2020.
- Facebook Warns of Major Impacts to Audience Network Effectiveness Due to iOS 14 Update (Social Media Today)
Facebook said this would be due to Apple’s intended changes to their Identifier for Advertisers (IDFA) which allows app owners to track users’ in-app activity and which would now automatically ask iOS users if they wanted the apps to track their activity or not.
- Speaking Up for Small Businesses (Facebook for Business)
Facebook said—and continues to say—that they are standing up for Small Businesses, as the iOS 14 updates will make it more difficult to run effective ads online.
- What Apple’s big tech frenemies think of its iOS 14 privacy updates (Mashable)
As Mashable notes, it could be that Facebook is also concerned about Apple trying to claim the “privacy-oriented company” title for themselves.
- Apple wins first battle in French fight over iOS 14 privacy protections (Engadget)
Meanwhile, France’s competition watchdog has denied a request from lobbying groups for the online advertising sector to block Apple’s anti-tracking controls.
- Zuckerberg: Facebook may actually be in a ‘stronger position’ after Apple’s iOS 14 privacy changes (CNBC)
And now Mark Zuckerberg is saying “Facebook will be able to manage” through the iOS privacy changes as they may drive more businesses to sell directly on Facebook’s platforms.
It is very likely that all mobile operating systems (including Android) will offer users more privacy options in the future (See more on that from The Verge here). Preparing your digital conversion ecosystem for the change is a good thing to start considering so you can make sure your ads and digital efforts are not as heavily impacted by these changes.
The Internet Shifts to a “Cookie-less World” 🍪
Cookies have long been the way that marketers track the success of their efforts online, but they’ve also raised their fair share of critiques and privacy questions, which has led some (see Apple’s changes above) to introduce new steps to limit Cookies on their platforms. Google is also moving forward on their version of a “cookie-less future.”
- Google’s alternative to third-party cookies open for advertiser testing in Q2 2021 (Search Engine Land)
Even the King of the Cookie 👑🍪 (Google) is preparing for this shift, and they plan to open up their alternative to third-party cookies, which they are calling FLoC, for advertisers to test in Q2.
- The Death of the Third-Party Cookie: What Marketers Need to Know About Google’s Looming Privacy Pivots (HubSpot)
Third-party cookies are going fast with some platforms already phasing out their use, and Google pledging to do so on Chrome by 2022. Lucky for us, HubSpot has put together an excellent guide on this.
- Charting a course towards a more privacy-first web (Google Ads & Commerce Blog)
Google’s Director of Product Management for Ads Privacy and Trust further laid out Google’s vision of a cookie-free and “privacy-first” web.
- Google’s FLoC Is a Terrible Idea (Electronic Frontier Foundation)
But some, like the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) are weary that this will just give Google even more power and control over personal data and how it is leveraged for digital advertising.
Your marketing and ads teams should already be considering how a “cookie-less future” could impact reporting on your advertising’s efficacy. It is hard to say exactly what changes you should be making right now, but any way that you can move your marketing away from a reliance on third-party cookies is advised.
Why are Facebook and Australia Fighting? 🦘
(Basically, Mark Zuckerberg likes picking fights, but he is not alone on this one.)
In an effort to help their news publishers, the Australian government proposed a new legal code that would allow Australian news publishers to charge tech companies to use their content in search and news feeds.
- Facebook-Australia standoff may have turned a corner (Search Engine Land)
As you can see, Facebook was not happy about this change and decided to remove all news posts from their platform in Australia.
- Facebook Agrees to Restore Australian News Pages After Amendments to Government Code (Social Media Today)
And then Australia decided to update their rules, and Facebook agreed to restore Australian news posts while they negotiate a better agreement.
- Supporting Australian journalism: a constructive path forward (Google)
Google took a similar tact and has threatened to remove Google Search entirely as an option in Australia. They took the time to nicely outline how these changes would impact the way Google works, and proposed their own solution to help support journalists.
- Australia’s proposed media code could break the world wide web, says the man who invented it (The Guardian)
A number of other noted voices spoke up with concern over the precedent that Australia’s code would bring to the free and open internet. These voices included the man that invented the world wide web, Tim Berners-Lee.
Unless you are a news publisher in Australia, the immediate impact will likely be small. What this means for the open internet model that most companies are used to operating within, and how the advertising ecosystem may be affected is up for debate.
Why are all the kids talking about some Clubhouse? 🏠 🤔
The latest new-new in social media apps allows for audio chat rooms where people can congregate, chat or just listen in. It has also been invite-only, and the exclusive nature of the app has helped to spur its popularity.
- Facebook Is Said to Be Building a Product to Compete With Clubhouse (New York Times)
From The New York Times, we learned that Facebook is now reportedly working on a similar app.
- Twitter is now testing its Clubhouse-like voice chat rooms (The Verge)
As reported by The Verge and other news outlets, Twitter has launched a beta of their Spaces feature, which looks to be another competitor in the “audio-social-network” space.
- What is Clubhouse? [+Should Marketers Care?] (HubSpot)
And now everyone is wondering what goes on in the Clubhouse? Lucky for us, HubSpot has done a great job of rounding up everything you need to know about the app.
It is still difficult to get an invite to join Clubhouse, and it is still exclusive to iOS, but if you are one of the lucky chosen few, Clubhouse can be an excellent space to establish yourself as an expert in your field and build up brand recognition and trust for your business. However, Clubhouse has yet to add paid advertising or any monetized structures to their app. Because of their early success, it looks like they will be facing increased competition from some big players so it may be best to wait and see before jumping in.
Other News We Found Interesting:
- Making it easier to reach the right customers on Search (Google Ads Help)
- How machine learning powers Facebook’s News Feed ranking algorithm (Facebook Engineering)
- Microsoft Advertising now offers Filter Link Extensions (Search Engine Land)
- Pinterest Launches New ‘Dynamic Creative’ Automated Ad Targeting and Creation Process (Social Media Today)