Facebook Advertisers Battle Ad Results After Apple’s Privacy Changes
A reporting glitch in Facebook’s ad results on Apple iPhones has created trouble for brands. Apple’s new privacy rules are making it difficult for Facebook advertisers to even conduct basic analysis and send faulty data about the campaigns.
There is inaccuracy for a simple study like understanding whether the person who saw the ad and made the purchase is the same or different.
Facebook has been fixing its ad platform ever since Apple started cracking down on tracking on its iPhones. Last week, Apple reported a bug last week where some advertisers received incomplete information that affected in-app installs, also known as conversions. Apparently, Facebook underreported the downloads and how well the ads worked for the marketers that ran on certain iPhones.
Facebook Advertisers & Data Dilemma
As stated to Adage, Jeff Richards, a paid media consultant who manages digital advertising for multiple brands explains the challenge for brands with an example: A brand recorded 20 conversions on their website and they correlated to the Facebook ad campaign.
However, Facebook Ads Manager reported zero conversions. This means no return on its ad dollars which was opposite to the reality. It was clear that consumers were shopping. A complete mismatch of data!
Facebook had earlier informed the marketers that the flaws in data reporting are fixed and advertisers can see high conversion values. A note obtained by Adage said, “We will be expanding modeled reporting for Website Purchases Conversion Value.”
Website Purchases Conversion Value is a system used by Facebook to track the total value of sales on an advertiser’s website after people viewed or clicked on a Facebook ad. This is invaluable data that is being inaccurately reported due to Apple’s privacy changes.
The exact reason Facebook was not able to see all the conversions was because Apple made recent changes to its operating system and implemented new privacy changes which led to less information from devices for developers like Facebook. Facebook’s note further stated,
With this update, statistical modeling will be used to estimate associated values of additional modeled conversions where events cannot be observed directly (for example, where conversion data may be partial or missing due to data transmission limitations)
As a result, you may see an increase in reported conversion values and other associated metrics like [Return on Ad Spend.] This update should help our bidding system learn from more representative data, which should then lead to more efficient performance
What’s The Way Out For Facebook Advertisers?
In order to fix this, Facebook is constantly communicating with the advertisers and helping them navigate through the uncertainty, and working on new ad measurement programs using “privacy-enhancing technologies.” Facebook’s fix of using statistical modeling is a ray of hope for many brands to regain brand visibility.
The measurement data is important for brands as it will help them to decide which campaigns to invest in and which to pause.
This is a highly crucial situation for Facebook and needs to find new ways to measure ads on iPhones as every single conversion matters. At the same time, Apple and Facebook should resolve their business differences for the betterment of all the parties involved.