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What the Latest iPhone Update Means for Your Marketing Strategy

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Apple’s latest iPhone update will have an impact on marketing. Dan Maxwell, the CEO of SWETI Marketing, shares what you need to know.

By the time you read this, most iPhone users will have updated their phone operating system and in the process, only 4% are opting to share app tracking data. If you are not up to speed on this, here is a short recap: Apple decided to lock down app tracking and force iPhone users to “opt-in” for tracking when they update their phones. Almost none of them are, so apps like Facebook and Instagram can no longer build advertising profiles on those people when using those apps. This will significantly affect your advertising strategies on those platforms. 

This brings up a great advertising concept: targeting. In the old days — two months ago — you could load a list of your active members into Facebook’s Ad Manager and then create a look-alike audience of people who had similar interests, usage, activity and engagement on the app. It is arguable how effective this was, but that doesn’t matter now because it lost most of its power with this Apple update. 

So, how else can you target? I have good news — in a lot of ways:

  • Geographic
  • Creative
  • Search
  • Website

Geographic: Geo targeting will still be accessible for ads. Google has solid data that is used in search and display ads, and Facebook still knows some location information either by user profiles or Android/web browser users. In our unique health club world, proximity to your gym is the most determinant factor in a prospect being compatible with your club. 

Creative: Also known as the lost art of designing for specific audiences. When creating any digital display ads, consider putting up more than one creative strategy. Use imagery and copy that might appeal to specific psychographic groups — i.e. values, affinities and motivations. This will go a long way to getting activity on your brand’s offer by passively targeting the groups of people you believe to be the best fit. 

Search: Google Search Ads have great power. When someone searches for a fitness solution in your market, you have access and insight into their needs and location. Not only can your search ads be set up to engage this thinking, but you can also use Google Display and YouTube advertising to then target those people. 

What about your website? As you know, many people visit your club’s website and don’t take action right away. In most cases you can track what pages they visit, buttons they click and how long they look around. Now you can use re-target advertising on Google to deliver specific ads to them based on what they showed interest in. This is often underutilized or poorly executed in our industry which is a shame. There is a lot of value to be had in digging into this with a good strategy. 

The bottom line is this: much has and will change with digital advertising segmentation tools. The good news is the playing field is always level between you and your competition. The important news is to compete, you need to know all the options and have a team in place that can execute those plays.

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Dan Maxwell

Dan Maxwell is CEO of SWETI Marketing and a Certified Messenger Marketing Expert. For more information visit swetimarketing.com.

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