How should student marketers be altering their process based on the changes that Apple are making to the IDFA on iOS 14?

3 min read

A little known (outside adtech circles), but highly important, feature of Apple’s iOS platform is set to change when the next iteration of their operating system, iOS 14 is released.  

The IDFA (identifier for advertisers) is currently a vital component of an $80 billion industry that allows advertisers to display retargeted messages to users across the different apps available on iPhone and iPad.

But, in an ongoing effort to position themselves as champions of privacy and data security, Apple is changing the process to require users to actively opt-in, rather than everything happening in the background.

Initially, this was scheduled to happen at launch, but has now been pushed back to early 2021, in order ‘to give developers the time they need to make the necessary changes’.

However, that’s not a vast amount of time to implement changes in your advertising technology infrastructure if it is set-up in this way.

Importance of first-party data 

We believe that Apple is completely correct to introduce this opt-in. The more transparency that’s introduced into the advertising world, the better. And it will benefit talented marketers that already utilise data in smart and efficient ways.

The way to limit the impact of these changes is to prioritise the use of first-party lead data to drive prospects through the recruitment funnel.

As an education institution, one of your greatest strengths is the amount of freely-given data that your prospects and students have submitted. This could come from prospectus downloads, event registrations or even your current students and alumni. As long as you’ve captured it with unambiguous consent that it can be used for marketing purposes.

The next step is to use that data. For advertising, the best place to start is by using the Akero hashing tool to create anonymised lists that can be fed into marketing platforms like Google, Facebook or LinkedIn to create custom audiences for remarketing. These custom lists are the users of those platforms that look most like your audience - they share the same interests, demographics or education history as your most qualified leads.

While you’re doing that to reach new audiences, the next step is to ensure you’re engaging in the most effective ways with your existing prospects. The best starting point is to plug your CRM data into your marketing automation tools to deliver personalised, timely and relevant content to your users via email, SMS, live chat (to name a few). If you want more information on how to do this, then our whitepaper is a great place to start. 

The adtech landscape is constantly changing and evolving, so by taking back control of your data, you can limit the impact that unexpected changes will have and ensure that you can carry on with business as usual, no matter what the tech giants throw at you. If you need help with this, then get in touch.