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Changes are Coming to iOS 14 and Facebook: Here’s What They Mean for Your Dealership

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Over the past decade, platforms like Facebook have become a crucial part of any business’s marketing mix, especially within the automotive industry. Apple’s iOS 14 platform has quickly become one of the leading mobile operating systems in the world and advertisers across the country optimize their digital strategy to target the platform. What many dealerships don’t know is that big changes are coming to both systems, affecting the way they can advertise and track customer actions.

Change to the iOS Privacy Agreement

Apple’s newest iOS 14 update is aimed at customer privacy, giving users the choice to opt-out of ad tracking. In simpler terms, users will now get to choose if they want to share their browsing habits and demographics with third-party advertising partners. This significantly affects advertiser’s abilities to personalize their marketing campaigns and see in-depth analytics. Furthermore, Apple’s update also directly impacts how Facebook processes and reports on data. It will be more difficult to track users’ actions and as more users implement this update and choose to opt-out of ad tracking, retargeting audiences will also shrink. 

As a result, Facebook has moved from a pixel-based tracking system to Aggregated Event Measurement as a way to measure web events from iOS 14 users. If your marketing team has opened Ads Manager as of April 2021, they have likely been blasted with notifications and warnings about this update.

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If your team has not already taken action, here are three steps to make the most out of these updates:

1. Verify Your Web Domain

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To verify your domain in Business Manager, go to “Business Settings” and scroll down to “Brand Safety. and click on “Domains.” 
From here, follow these instructions from Facebook to complete the domain verification process. 

2. Optimize Web Events 

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Once verified, you can configure up to eight web events as part of the Facebook Aggregated Events Measurement tool. Facebook will use these events to optimize the ad delivery process.

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For dealers, we recommend the “View Content” event remain a top priority. Most automotive Facebook calls to action aim to direct viewers to inventory on your site.

3. Strategically Expand Your Ad Targeting Audience

We know that custom audience size is going to decrease as a result of Apple’s update and while dealers may now have a smaller sample to pull from based on their web activity, consider focusing on Interest-based Facebook targeting options or a list of past purchasers or service contacts from your CRM.

The Future of Facebook for Auto Dealers

The exact impact Apple’s AppTracking Transparency will have on auto marketers remains unknown. While these updates may seem a bit overwhelming for your dealership, it’s important to keep in mind that the iOS 14 update does not limit web tracking capabilities for non-Apple users and those shopping on desktop. It seems that even with the new iOS update, Facebook will continue to be a marketing platform that’s worth the time and investment.

Thousands of dealerships nationwide trust our team of social media gurus to affordably expand the reach of their business and engage with new customers. To learn more about our social media management program, visit us online.

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