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How Will Apple’s New iOS 14.5 Privacy Measures Affect Your Hotel’s Digital Marketing?

  • May 17, 2021
    Digital Marketing

With over 1 billion active iPhones across the globe, Apple has the power to massively influence the way consumers use their mobile devices. With their recent iOS 14 updates they have done just that, giving users the explicit choice of whether or not they want to share their data with third parties like Facebook, Instagram and others. 


What Changed with the iOS 14.5 Update?

As of the iOS 14.5 update on April 26, Apple now requires every app to prompt the user with an option to either “opt in” or “opt out” of in-app data collection. This means that users will have an upfront choice for whether they want their browsing habits to be visible by third-party platforms.


Before the update, it’s estimated that around 70% of iPhone users were opted in to data collection (It was previously possible to opt-out manually, but had to be done through the settings menu.) Following the update, the opt-in rate is now estimated be as low as 5%.


What’s the Impact on Digital Marketing?

Digital marketing is a data-driven enterprise, especially digital advertising. Platforms like Facebook are great places to advertise, not only because they have a massive audience, but also because they have been able to collect a wealth of data about people’s interests, demographics and browsing behavior that advertisers can use to display their ads to certain categories of consumers.  


As this pool of user data is reduced, so is the efficiency with which the ad platform (e.g. Facebook) can deliver ads to the right people at the right time. It forces advertisers to cast a wider net, spending money to get their ad in front of people who, for all they know, may have no interest in their product.


Needless to say, Facebook is not pleased with the move, even going so far as to take out full-page newspaper ads in protest.  


What Does This All Mean for My Hotel?

This means that your hotel digital advertising strategy will need to adapt. But this shouldn’t feel like anything new: every good digital ad strategy should be agile and ready to pivot in responses to changes in the market and evolving tech. 


Depending on the structure of your ad campaigns, it may be necessary to reallocate ad spend budget across different channels and targeting strategies. Similarly, the ways in which your ad results are reported may need to evolve in order to bring in additional sources of data to fill in the gaps left by your iOS users. 


While the new push for privacy may involve some short-term headaches for advertisers, we suspect the long-term impact may not turn out to be as severe as some (i.e. Facebook) are making it out to seem. In fact, some are suggesting the changes could ultimately have a positive result for the digital advertising landscape as a whole.   


For help adapting your ad strategy or to chat more about how the new iOS update could impact your hotel business, please drop us a line here at Digital Hospitality. We’re always happy to chat. 


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