How iOS 14 & 15 Will Bring the Second Golden Age of Marketing

by | Jul 6, 2021 | Digital Marketing, Digital News & Information, Marketing Strategy

Apple recently announced at their Worldwide Developers Conference that they will be introducing iOS 15 in Fall 2021. This new operating system contains many new privacy features that have small business owners and their marketing teams wondering about the fate of their advertising efforts.

Coming directly after the privacy and tracking controls of iOS14, this is another step towards Apple adding another layer of security to their devices, and in turn, adding another level of difficulty in marketing.

While these privacy changes may cause growing pains for some marketers, others will begin to reconnect to the value of creativity and welcome in a second “Golden Age of Marketing.”

Let us start with the obvious: what is iOS 15?

The new iOS 15 software is set to roll out this fall with several new features focused on privacy, data tracking, and user security.  Three features in particular are primed to dramatically change the way marketing agencies are able to track and target audience behaviors:

Mail Privacy Protection

Intelligent Tracking Prevention

App Privacy Report

Mail Privacy Protection

When using the Mail app, this new feature will prevent senders from being able to use invisible pixels to collect user information. In effect, this will hide open and click data from email marketing teams. The change also masks user IP addresses so their activity can’t be linked to other online interactions or be used to track their geographic location.

Intelligent Tracking Prevention

For many years, Safari users have been able to use Intelligent Tracking Prevention to protect against unwanted tracking. With the iOS 15 rollout, this feature will get even stronger by hiding the user’s IP address from trackers. That means advertisers won’t be able to use IP addresses as unique identifiers to connect activity across the web and build an audience profile based on this information.

App Privacy Report

Through this feature, users will be able to see how often each application uses their permission to access location, photos, camera, microphone, and contacts data during the past week. If users feel their permissions have been violated after reviewing this activity, they can make the necessary adjustments to their Settings in the app. This feature also allows users to see all the third-party domains with which their data are being shared when an app is in use.

Marketing in the Age of iOS 15

With all these privacy changes impacting how marketing teams are able to track user information and build effective audience profiles, many are worried that this may be the end of digital marketing as we know it. Digital marketing has long relied on advanced technology to take the guesswork out of reaching the right people in the right place at the right time. Now, advertisers will need to rethink their strategy in order to remain relevant in the changing marketing landscape.

Replacing Vanity Metrics

Marketing technologies have made our jobs too easy for too long. In fact, one could argue that these vast insights into audience behaviors and demographics have made marketing teams lazy.

Rather than relying on hard-core sales metrics to gauge advertising performance, we replaced these with vanity metrics such as likes, followers, impressions and clicks. While these metrics are crucial to helping guide a campaign, they are not detrimental to success.

The iOS 15 updates will force marketers to harken back to their roots, using more tangible data to drive advertising decision-making. This change in which metrics advertisers prioritize will ultimately result in better campaign performance and a stronger ROI for clients.

Revitalizing Marketing Creativity

Privacy changes are revitalizing marketing, not ruining it. These changes will force teams to rethink how they reach different audiences and get back to the marketing funnel.

Creativity will ultimately be a determining factor in how well ad placements perform: Rather than relying so heavily on technology to develop campaigns, teams will need to depend on their creativity and research to earn results for their clients.

This creative reawakening will bring marketing back to its roots, hopefully generating the second “Golden Age of Advertising” we saw between the 1960s and 1980s.

Rethinking Advertising as an Art

Inspiring marketing creativity will require teams to rethink their entire approach to advertising as a whole. Advertising great, William Bernbach, put it perfectly when he said:

There are a lot of great technicians in advertising. And, unfortunately, they talk the best game. They know all the rules. They can tell you that people in an ad will get you greater readership. They can tell you that a sentence should be this short or that long. They can tell you that body copy should be broken up for easier reading. They can give you fact after fact after fact. They are the scientists of advertising. But there’s one little rub: Advertising is fundamentally persuasion, and persuasion happens to be not a science, but an art.

While there are many scientific aspects to marketing — especially in the digital age — at the end of the day, advertising is an art. Teams that are able to master this art and marry persuasion with creativity effectively will be the ones who overcome the challenges that iOS 15 presents.

Bill Reinhart

Bill has been an active marketer for over 15 years with experience leading teams in web development, SEO, and lead generation. Bill founded Signature W Studio in 2018 in Charlotte, NC. Bill's goal with Signature W Studio is to create lasting partnerships with his clients.

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