IOS 14: The impacts on your ads and the solutions to keep your campaigns effective

IOS 14: What impacts on your ads and what solutions to keep your campaigns effective?

By now, you’ve probably heard about Apple’s new iOS 14 update, which has impacted how personalized ads are delivered on social networks and how users’ personal data is collected. This update requires iOS apps to proactively ask users for permission to track them on other apps and websites; whereas previously, users were tracked by default.   

In this article, our experts will explain what the iOS 14 update is all about and what you can do to minimize its impact on your ads. 

What you need to know about the iOS 14 update 

In addition to new features like the ability to unlock your iPhone with a mask, more inclusive emojis, and improvements to Siri, Apple has launched a new section of privacy information in the App Store called AppTrackingTransparency. 

In fact, IOS 14 has introduced an important evolution in privacy protection by requiring applications to ask the user’s permission before collecting their data and tracking their activities. Apple Store applications must have the user’s explicit consent and inform him or her about the nature and use of the data collected. Two scenarios are therefore possible:  

  • The user accepts (“Allow Tracking”): nothing changes, the user continues to see targeted ads when browsing the applications;  
  • The user refuses (“Ask App Not to Track”): in this case, the user preserves his data and privacy. 

Let’s look at Facebook, the social network featuring the most reach and advanced targeting options. If you create a retargeting campaign on Facebook for all customers who have viewed a specific product line on your iOS App, you can now only target customers who have selected “Allow Tracking” for your mobile app and the Facebook App.  

This change affects all platforms that collect data used to personalize advertising. 

The impact of this update on businesses  

Previously, brands relied on Facebook Identifier for Advertisers (IDFA) to track customer behavior through a unique identifier assigned to each iOS device. This tracking was essential to get a 360-degree view of customers moving from one channel to another. The removal of the IDFA following the IOS 14 update made it more difficult to personalize audiences. Additionally, the new update had a direct impact on companies’ prospecting and retargeting campaigns: 

  • Lead generation campaigns: since many people in your audience are now able to block tracking on mobile apps, you may have noticed that a significant part of your iOS audience refuses to be tracked. As a result, your targeted campaign will naturally allocate ad spend less effectively to customers most likely to buy.   
  • Retargeting campaigns: you no longer have the ability to retarget iOS 14 users based on their activity in your apps and your websites if they have not consented to personalized ads. This will inevitably reduce the total size of your retargeting audiences that rely on in-app tracking. 

Key steps to take to face iOS 14 changes 

To adapt to these changes, Facebook has announced a list of steps to take to cope with this update while keeping your ads on the Facebook and Instagram platforms effective.   

If you want to run ads optimized for conversion events on your company’s app, Facebook recommends installing the latest Facebook SDK update for iOS 14 to version 8.1. This is to improve the personalization of ads shown to Apple users and to continue to receive statistics related to conversion events occurring on apps.   

Facebook’s SDK for iOS 14 8.1 version, currently supports Apple’s SKAdNetwork API which prevents Apple’s tracking system from displaying the notification that asks the user to allow or not allow their tracking. This will help companies collect more data.   

When creating an ad for iOS 14 devices, the only purchase option is the auction. The reach and frequency buying type are no longer available.  

Once your campaign is published, there is no way to activate or discontinue the iOS 14 campaign. You must deactivate or delete your campaign. 

What is the Facebook Conversions API and how to use it

As for optimized ads for conversion events on your company’s website. You need to consider the following steps:   

  • From now on, you are limited to using eight conversion events per domain for optimization. The Facebook Event Aggregator limits the number of conversion events that can be used for campaign optimization to eight per domain. If you are using more than eight events today, you must prioritize the top eight in Facebook Business Manager.
  • Verify that domains with pixel events shared by multiple Facebook Business Managers accounts are appropriate. Domain verification determines which Business Manager account has the authority to set up and prioritize the eight conversion events available for a given domain. 
  • You can only associate your application with one ad account. However, you can use the same ad account to serve ads for multiple apps.
  • The 28-day click and view attribution windows are no longer available. The new default is a 7-day click and you can set your attribution window at the ad set level rather than the account level. 

To make sure you’re in line with Apple’s new policy, here are a few things to check to better manage your ad spend and optimize your digital marketing in general:    

  • Monitor the return on ad spend (ROAS) of your campaigns and optimize your budget accordingly.
  • If you have an iOS app that shares customer information with other parties for marketing or ad monetization purposes, enable the App Tracking Transparency pop-up for your users before passing their tracking data to other companies.
  • Try to invest more in an organic marketing channel such as SEO, which is not affected by this policy.
  • Use incentives and offers to convert visitors from paid channels to your email list. You can always email them back even if you can’t reach them through retargeting ads.
  • Consider using a last-click attribution model for customer acquisition and relying on UTM metrics that track the origin of your web traffic and conversions. This will make it easier to track campaign performance in reporting tools outside of your ad manager, such as Google Analytics. 


With this update, companies are forced to be creative and develop new ways to engage with their audiences and personalize their offers without collecting their data. So make sure you are fully up-to-date and ready for this. 

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