New privacy protocols grow 48%, are advertisers braced for the worst?

By Zion Rufus

The implication of privacy related updates occasioned by the dawn of increased privacy and data limitations has been globally agreed to be one of the worst nightmares marketers and advertisers will ever face.

As new privacy protocols nearly double in half a year, growing from 28% to 48%, a new MMA Global study has revealed that sadly, marketers have underestimated the degree to which consumer concerns about online privacy influence their online behavior; as a result consumers are less likely to allow tracking than marketers expect them to.

2021 saw an increasing number of data protection bills and laws passed across numerous international jurisdictions. International Cybersecurity and Data Privacy Outlook and Review for 2022 showed that China, the UAE, Brazil, Russia and Switzerland, among others, passed new laws, amendments, or implemented regulations which paved way for a new round of significant data privacy regimes.

“This new development is already affecting targeting,” stated Tobi Adekunle, Marketing Manager, Eskimi in an interview with MARKETING EDGE.

 “I must say, this will impact greatly on advertising. Sadly, advertisers and marketers are not preparing well enough, and that is because Google is yet to carry out the deprecation of third party cookies and moving to first party data which is dated to happen in 2023; so everyone is still hoping it will not happen. And in the euphoria of ‘it might happen, it might not happen’, advertisers and marketers are still largely relaxed,” he continued. 

According to the MMA study, following the release of Apple’s App Tracking Transparency (ATT) policy which requires developers to ask for permission when they collect certain information and prompts iOS users to opt in or out of data tracking across apps and websites, customers who no longer give consent to ad tracking have grown to 47%, from 29%. What’s more, marketers expect that making ads less repetitive and better content quality are key incentives for consumers to allow tracking; meanwhile, 45% of consumers have said that none of these factors would make them more likely to opt-in to tracking.​​​​​​

In 2021, Apple introduced a round of policy features and updates which further stiffened an already limited ad tracking and retargeting space and significantly disrupted a $105 billion U.S. mobile-ad industry. The policies also put more limitations around email marketing and in-app advertising. Google, on the other hand, doubled its privacy policy by halting the measurement of IDFA altogether.

“Apple’s ATT has limited reach and largely impacted targeting,” Adekunle said.

He explained: “For android, there’s still hope because across the world, people are largely on android, so to marketers, it still feels like ‘oh, we are not feeling the heat yet’. But I think by 2023 when Google implements it’s own proposed regulations, it will become more glaring to everybody that we need to move primarily to first party data and we need to reengineer our marketing and advertising processes because it’s going to affect everybody, especially for those who are not ready and those who are yet to put measures in place or leverage on tools and technologies that can help them to reach their target audience.”

Following the update, Google disclosed that Apple’s ATT changes will reduce visibility into key metrics that show how ads drive conversions (like app installs and sales) and will affect how advertisers value and bid on ad impressions. As such, app publishers may see a significant impact to their Google ad revenue on iOS after Apple’s ATT policies take effect.

So, where advertisers will no longer be able to deliver personalized ads or track the effectiveness of their ad campaigns without users’ consent, data gathering companies will also be faced with the issue of inaccuracies in data gathered.

“We are already facing that dilemma as it is already affecting the accuracy of targeting efforts by advertisers. Currently, we have situations where advertisers are trying to reach male audiences and what they end up seeing is a mixture of male and female, and this is happening because we no longer have access to some of the things we used to have access to in terms of accuracy, clarity, gender, platforms, apps they use and many more.”

In an earlier submission, ADMARP President and tech expert Oti Ukubeyinje advised that marketers need to become more intelligent and creative in how they go about collecting data in the most consented and compliant way from consumers. 

He said: “Today, a lot of businesses and marketers rely on third party data and cookies to make informed marketing and advertising decisions, they work with second party data companies and third party data companies to have access to data and make marketing decisions sometimes in  real time, sometimes over a period of time,” Oti said.


He advised: “The push for privacy does not necessarily mean that marketing has to stop or data driven marketing has to stop. It brings about the need for businesses to invest in their first party data strategy so that you would build your arsenal of consumer data that you have collected through a value exchange process thereby establishing a relationship that allows you to engage with customers better. This ushers us into an era where the value of the customer will automatically increase because of those who you have within your pocket.”




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