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iOS 14 — Brand & Agencies Update

Posted Jul 22, 2020

Mobile apps and games have seen a tremendous surge over the past few months, even more accelerated than the constant growth curve we’ve seen since starting life as mobile game developers ourselves in 2008, so it’s no surprise that brands and agencies have taken notice. It’s also no surprise we’ve received a lot of questions from our clients and partners about what Apple’s recent changes in iOS 14 mean for them. Fortunately, we have some answers. Read on for more information. 

Rumors of the total deprecation of the IDFA at the hands of Apple may have been exaggerated, but the changes Apple has announced to its identifier for advertisers will cause shifts in how they advertise in apps of all kinds.

What does AdColony think about Apple’s changes in iOS 14?
AdColony is committed to ensuring business continuity entirely within Apple’s guidelines for our publishers and advertisers when iOS 14 releases to the public this Fall, including all of our DSP and SSP partners. 

We’re in consistent communication with all of our partners to ensure no matter the nature of our partnership, business will continue uninterrupted when iOS 14 launches. 

What are the impacts of iOS 14?
By far the most significant impact of iOS 14’s changes for the mobile app and mobile advertising industries are the changes to privacy. The biggest user-facing change as part of Apple’s new approach to privacy is that users will be prompted with a simple prompt asking them to opt-in on an app-by-app basis. 

For more information on exactly how this change works, we suggest our full explanation elsewhere on our blog.

What about targeting? 
Like most in the industry, we expect the number of specifically addressable devices will decrease when iOS 14 launches. It is unknown what percentage of Apple users will choose to opt-in to sharing their data via this process, and estimates have ranged widely depending on who you ask. 

One of the primary alternatives to device-level targeting that has been discussed in the industry has been that of contextual targeting. As one of the first mobile ad networks for mobile apps, AdColony has almost a decade of experience using the power of contextual audiences for advertisers of all types, in both direct and programmatic supply. With our granular bidding, app metadata and contextual data partnerships, and proprietary bidding algorithms engineered to optimize against contextual signals, we are confident our experience in this area will give our advertisers an advantage as the industry makes the shift.

As part of our commitment to uninterrupted advertising success for our partners, AdColony will be launching brand new tools in the coming weeks to facilitate app-level contextual targeting and campaign optimization for advertisers. If you are an advertiser and would like to learn more and potentially join our closed beta, please email advertiserproducts@adcolony.com

Will users who don’t opt-in still be able to see AdColony ads?
Yes. Our SDK will still be able to serve ads to users regardless of their opt-in status. As detailed in the “What about targeting” question above, we’ll continue working on targeting and optimization strategies to ensure the right users see your ads, even if they choose to not opt-in to sharing their device ID. 

What is SKAdNetwork I keep hearing about?
SKAdNetwork is Apple’s replacement for the third-party measurement and attribution space for app install campaigns. SKAdNetwork is designed to allow ad networks (like AdColony) to directly attribute installs (and some other data) without using a third-party attribution vendor. 

If you’re running campaigns with us to install apps, whether those be restaurant apps, shopping apps, mobile games, or any other category chances are your colleagues who need to know about SKAdNetwork to report campaign efficacy are already on top of things. 

Does AdColony plan on supporting SKAdNetwork?
AdColony is one hundred percent committed to supporting SKAdNetwork and we’re already registered with Apple. 

Can you pass more contextual signals to us via the bid request?
We are happy to collaborate with our partners on adding additional data points to the bid request. Please contact us to discuss new contextual targeting options you might be interested in.

Do you support fingerprinting attribution?
AdColony is not a mobile measurement partner or attribution provider.

Can I use other data signals for targeting and attribution if a user does not opt-in?
AdColony is unable to provide recommendations around this. 

Will AdColony continue to support MMPs?
We intend to adopt a flexible approach based on data availability and the preferences of our partners and plan on continuing to work with our existing and any new mobile measurement platform (MMP) partners. The change to SKAdNetwork has significant impacts on the way MMPs tally and collate data, but we welcome any conversations on how we can move forward and continue working with some of our oldest and most valued partners. 

Will AdColony continue to work with DSPs?
Our supply will continue to be open for business from other vetted programmatic sources. AdColony has become known as the mobile monetization platform with the widest range of ads for developers, including industry-leading brand demand for in-app environments, and one of the most trusted and brand-safe sources of supply for our advertising partners. We intend on maintaining this for the foreseeable future. 

I am a DSP but I don’t have a direct relationship with publishers. Can AdColony help us get our ad network ID integrated into publishers’ info.plist?
From an attribution perspective we will support SKAdNetwork integrations with AdColony’s ad network ID or the DSPs ad network ID. That said, it is currently ultimately up to the publisher to determine whether or not they add the ad network ID to their info.plist.

Since we plan on full support for SKAdNetwork, we’re able to utilize either AdColony’s ad network ID or a DSP ad network ID and are happy to collaborate on integrating the best solution for your needs. If you are a DSP looking to partner or continue to work with AdColony, please reach out and contact us. 

What about Android devices?
Consumers with Android devices remain addressable directly via their AAID (Android Advertising Identifier) and make up a little less than half of the mobile phone market share in the United States, and almost 75% worldwide.

How will this impact our operations and what critical changes it involves and does AdColony have any specific thoughts regarding consent flow like GDPR, CCPA?
AdColony requires that clients and partners follow all applicable laws. It is the publisher’s responsibility to obtain and pass consent to AdColony. AdColony is unable to offer legal advice to our clients and partners and we encourage publishers to seek a professional legal opinion on GDPR, CCPA, etc. 

AdColony’s SDK contains a fully functional consent API with support for GDPR, CCPA, and other consent flags from developers who choose to take advantage of it. We also extend opt-out, do not track, do not process, and data requests from end-users regardless of where in the world they live via our privacy policy. More information on our consumer-friendly approach to privacy can be found on our Consumer Privacy page

Next Time…
Check back soon for additional FAQs on iOS 14.

Join the Conversation
Have more questions about iOS 14? Tweet us at @AdColony. For the latest AdColony mobile news and updates, follow @AdColony on Twitter, like us on Facebook, or connect on Linkedin.

Jonathan

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