Podcast #3

Are Your Facebook Ad Campaigns Ready for iOS14?

The battle that has been brewing between Apple and Facebook is coming to a head and marketers need to prepare their digital advertising campaigns. As Apple’s iOS operating system upgrades to version 14, it is introducing privacy policies that will affect how Facebook handles ads.

Episode Highlights:


Landon Daugherty: “What’s going to happen is that any of the iOS 14 update users that opt-out of tracking, which they say it’s probably going to be around 60%, we lose that tracking for those users…Facebook and Apple will not ask again to be able to track that data so that user is permanently gone from their system.”

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Announcer: Welcome to the Ignite Podcast, the only healthcare marketing podcast that digs into the digital strategies and tactics that help you accelerate growth. Each week, Cardinal’s experts explore innovative ways to build your digital presence and attract more patients. Buckle up for another episode of Ignite.

Alex MembrilloHey, everybody. Excited to have you guys on Ignite. We’ve got DJ the Landon Daugherty with us, our Director of Paid Social Advertising. He’ll tell you that story some other time, but I’m excited to have him on. This is a very timely discussion, Landon because we’re going to talk about all the iOS 14 update stuff and what all of our healthcare marketers out there need to know. Where did this start? Why did Tim Cook and Zuckerberg don’t like each other? Where did this come from?

Landon DaughertyI think it really comes from Apple just wanted to be at the forefront of privacy. I think it’s really their first stance that really trying to be the better person when it comes to advertising. One thing that’s really– I guess it’s a big point they’d come across is that the iOS 14 update will not apply to Apple products. Their app store and everything doesn’t have to go through the same privacy measures that they’re enforcing on other advertisers. If you look at the backstory behind it, it really just doesn’t make sense how Apple was able to get away with this level of privacy and concern that they’re really enforcing on the entire app store.

It’s going to be a huge impact to Facebook. Obviously, there’s ways to work around it, but at the end of the day, it’s going to be a lot of tracking. It’s going to be a lot of conversion data, and a lot of revenue on the Facebook side. There’s a lot of stuff that you can do to mitigate or really minimize the impact of the update, but it’s going to affect everybody.

Alex: You said lots of conversion data, et cetera. You’re talking about the impact. If I’m a healthcare marketer and I’m trying to get patients in the door, my conversion volume going to go down or just my ability to track it?

Landon: What’s happening is Apple is really going to– Whenever you open it, open the Facebook app, once the update is rolled out, you’ll have a prompt that shows up that allows you to opt-out of tracking. Really what it’s going to say is either allow the advertiser to track your data or opt-out. A lot of the messaging that Facebook has been trying to push back on is to allow people to opt-in because they really want the message to be more positive, and come across as like this, “We are personalizing ads for you, so this is why you need to have this tracking on the system.” But really what they’re doing is having an opt-out button to make it a negative connotation, and really, since Facebook has all the history of privacy concerns, there’s going to be a large amount of people that will opt-out of tracking.

What happens there is that basically whatever that user goes into the Facebook app, we have zero visibility on what they’re doing within the Facebook app and the conversions that happen offline. What’s going to happen is that any of the iOS 14 update users that opt-out of tracking which they say it’s probably going to be around 60%, we lose that tracking for those users, and there’s never going to be an Apple or Facebook has came out and said that they will not ask again to be able to track that data so that user is permanently gone from their system.

Really what Facebook’s trying to do is educate their users on why tracking is important, why the personalized ads are important to them because you’re still going to see the same amount of ads, they’re just not going to be personalized to the user, so really a negative effect on the user experience for a lot of the users on Facebook. Really, it’s going to come across as just a huge loss of tracking for conversions that happen offline to Facebook, so really it’s important to make sure that your lead gen strategies are up to part with what they’re trying to roll out, and really gain a lot of that tracking and a lot of those leads directly on Facebook versus outside on your website.

Alex: Don’t push of the landing pages as much try to keep them on Facebook so that you can get the conversion data. That will be the workaround, it sounds like going with the Facebook lead ads impartially.

Landon: Native lead ads are definitely going to become more effective. That’s something that Facebook’s trying to help roll out a little bit more. In the past, a lot of the connotation around lead ads is that the lead quality dropped off tremendously just due to the autofill feature and a lot of lead ads on Facebook, but really with high intent lead forms that you can customize the questions to really match the form that you would have on your website. You can have that same user experience, but natively on Facebook to where we’re able to attract that conversion data that we would be losing with the iOS 14 update.

Alex: It’s interesting for the user, like you’re not going to absolve yourself of getting ads, you’re just going to get really shitty ones now that ads [crosstalk].

Landon: Yes, exactly.

Alex: I think it’s super creepy on Facebook listens to what I’m saying, like I said, “Gina, my teeth are yellow.” Then the next day I’m getting whitening, and then I was like, “Actually, I do need all these.”

Landon: It definitely doesn’t help with Netflix documentaries, like The Social Dilemma coming out around the same time and really it’s going to push a lot of users to off data tracking which really just the misinformation around what that really means is going to be huge. That’s what Facebook is pushing hard right now and really just to educate users on why tracking is important and why that data is important to have targeted personalized ads that you would actually want to click on because if not you’re going to have stuff that really doesn’t pertain to you at all just pop up on your feed. It’s going to be a less fun user experience especially on Instagram where a lot of the ads are very targeted and especially in the ecom space now you’re going to see ads that really just don’t pertain to you at all. It’s going to clog up your feed and this is not going to be a great user experience.

Alex: It’s not the solution of getting us unhooked or unaddicted to device. It’s not the solution. It’s just making the user experience maybe you make it like a bad user experience people or user have and they won’t. That’s not a solution. There are other ways to achieve this which no one’s thinking about yet anywho. Back to the healthcare marketers, native lead ad is one of the ways. Anything else they need to know that’s going to be a workaround that they need to get in place right now? Anything else that you’re doing for our clients that they should know about?

Landon: Yes, absolutely. I think the other thing would be the conversion API. Right now, most advertisers are just using the Facebook page pixel. One thing that Facebook does offer is a conversion API and it makes a lot of sense if you’re collecting lead form data on your website to really move to conversion API. What the conversion API is it just tracks more user variables just due to UTM parameters. Right now, really the only thing that’s coming through the pixel is the source. Whenever you go to conversion API, you’re really targeting that exact user with their IP address, all kinds of different personal information that are tracked with the conversion API that you don’t get with the base pixel. There’s a lot of stories that needs research as to what the conversion API actually does for a client, but basically, it just tracks more user variables that you can then go back and target that won’t be affected absolutely with the iOS 14 update.

Alex: Long and short of it, conversion API that’s important rather than base pixel and natively forms two biggest things. Long and short of it, Landon, do you think healthcare marketers are going to be able to maintain performance levels after this update?

Landon: Yes, I think they definitely can and really the attention is going to be needed on the creative side of things a lot more than it used to be because really with less targeted ads, you’re going to have to have creative that speak to the user and really going to stop at them scrolling because even if it is an ad that doesn’t necessarily pertain to them, but they could be in the market for. You really want to stop at them scrolling, get their attention, get more information because especially in a funnel strategy, if you can stop the consumer with a brand awareness campaign with engaging creative, you can then retarget those users just based off the information that Facebook has natively without having to go to the pixel, without having to go offline and collecting the data that would be affected by the iOS 14 update. Really it’s about creating creative for the funnel stage of your consumers end and really having engaging creative that it really hasn’t been talked about as much in the past, but it’s going to be of vital importance going forward.

Alex: I like it, Landon. It really hasn’t been talked about as much. People come to us all the time and say, “I want to run Facebook ads.” I’m like, “Well, we’re also going to need grid. Do you have in-house grid? No? Can you just get some stock images or stock video? We could have three years ago sir that would have worked, but now, all your competitors are doing it and there’s way better than yours. You almost need a separate creative engagement now with ad agency or in-house or whatever to make it really pop to stop them scrolling.”

Landon: One other thing is just the way that Facebook really differentiates itself from Google is they’re going to add a component to creative on Facebook that tracks user value. What happens with user value is that Facebook looks at the ad quality, it looks at how the consumers have interacted with the ad before. If it’s something that is going to come across in an ad language on the particular user’s feed, they want to make sure that the advertisement blend into their organic feed as well as possible. It really plays a component on how much you’re able to reach your consumer because really Google takes into account your bid and then your competitors really what adds into Facebook is that user value component because they want to make sure that their users are enjoying their time on Facebook, and making sure you have quality creative plays a big impact into how much you’re able to reach and how much conversions you get from your campaign.

Alex: It’s almost like how Google evaluates to all-time bounce rates and stuff like that. They will find the workaround. There are several workarounds to this. Performance can stay high, pay attention to your creative, start getting reworked out to be better than your competition and life will go on just like every other algo update with Google or Facebook. Life goes on and they can’t beat the game. Advertising is so lucrative that these platforms figure a way through it every time. It’s like in Jurassic Park, life will find a way. Advertising will find a way.

Landon: Every time.

Alex: Landon, our Director of Paid Social Advertising here at Cardinal. Thanks for joining, bud.

Landon: Yes, absolutely.


Announcer: Thanks for listening to this episode of Ignite. Interested in keeping up with the latest trends in healthcare marketing, subscribe to our podcasts and leave a rating and review. For more healthcare marketing tips, visit our blog at cardinaldigitalmarketing.com.

[00:10:43] [END OF AUDIO]

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