Building a solid Email marketing plan allows you to engage and interact with your target audience in a personalized manner while also increasing revenue at a low cost. Email marketing tools, like other platforms and media, make it easier than ever for your firm to reach out to customers. But, as it turns out, things aren’t as simple as they appear.
Apple’s recent IOS 15 update included several privacy upgrades, including the banning of ad trackers and the masking of email activities. While Apple has long been a promoter of user data privacy, this latest upgrade is upsetting marketers and agencies who rely on first-party data insights to reach Apple customers.
Let’s dig in deep to know how the IOS 15 updates affect email marketing and how to optimize email marketing, how you should react and adapt to the IOS 15 update moving forward, and what the new IOS 15 version is all about.
What Is The New Apple IOS 15 Update?
Apple has been releasing regular system updates to improve user experience and innovate since its launch. The tech company began rolling out its latest version, iOS 15, in September 2021, with a focus on data privacy.
Users will notice several changes, including a redesigned user interface, memory and music integration, and 3D map views. However, the privacy improvements, particularly in the mail app, are most important to us as marketers since they aim to return power and control to the user.
As part of the new update, Apple mail users can now opt-out of having their data shared with marketers by selecting the option “guard mail activity” from marketers. All user mail activity will be loaded remotely if they select this option, protecting the recipient’s IP address. Furthermore, the new update will have an impact on the content that can be included in emails.
This update comes as no surprise, given many privacy updates in recent years and the general public being more tech-savvy than ever. Working from home has given many people a crash lesson in cyber security, transforming what was once a niche issue into something much more popular.
Even though this update would only affect Apple users, it is estimated that Apple mail and Apple users account for 30-50 percent of the average business’s email list, with 1 billion people using an iPhone worldwide.
There is an option to opt-out of this functionality, but if history is any indication, most users will choose to protect their data from businesses if given the choice. For example, with the iOS 14 upgrade, 96 percent of U.S. customers elected not to opt-in to app monitoring, demonstrating how important privacy is to consumers.
The Three Latest IOS 15 Updates
Mail Privacy Protection (Free):
This feature stops senders from collecting information about users via invisible pixels. Marketers have traditionally utilized these pixels to track things like, how much time they spend reading email, their IP address, etc.
This is how Apple describes the feature:
“When you receive an email in the Mail app, rather than downloading remote content when you open an email, Mail Privacy Protection downloads remote content in the background by default – regardless of how you do or don’t engage with the email. Apple does not learn any information about the content.”
Marketers were not able to see a customer’s Internet Protocol (IP) address when they opened an email. Instead, the consumer’s IP address is forwarded to many proxy servers, and the customer is given a new IP address.
The Mail Privacy Protection function successfully disables tracking pixels, protecting the privacy of consumers.
With this feature, Apple email customers can generate unique and random email addresses to use on apps, websites, social media, and other places.
When joining up for a newsletter, making an eCommerce purchase, emailing someone they don’t know, or for a variety of other reasons, a user can use this function to preserve their privacy.
These emails are forwarded to the user’s mailbox, and the user can modify the email address that gets forwarded messages at any time or turn off email forwarding altogether to stop receiving messages.
Hide My Email (within iCloud+):
An email address masking feature that allows users to give websites with false email addresses.
While promotional emails sent to the false address will still reach the intended recipient and should have no impact on key communications, companies will not be able to know the contact’s genuine address until the contact shares it.
How The New IOS 15 Updates Will Affect Email Marketing
With the Mail Protection Policy, you’ll need to make some modifications to your email marketing plan if you want it to keep doing well. To do so, you must first recognize that developments like this are inevitable and are always bound to happen.
Furthermore, failing to act accordingly would be the biggest blow to your business, since iOS holds 53.66 percent of the market share in the country like the United States, followed by Android with 46 percent.
Before we look at what steps you may take, let’s look at the most affected areas:
Open Rate and IP Data Collection
As expected, the new feature has an immediate impact on the open rate and IP data collection.
The open rate, which displays whether or not your subscribers are interested in your communications, is one of the most crucial email marketing indicators. In particular, analyzing this data might help you improve your subject lines and email copy.
Marketing automation was also affected by the recent changes. The reasons are simple. Specific flows based on subscriber involvement will not work because your automated workflows require data to function. Due to a lack of data, re-engagement workflows or the algorithms based on opens, for example, no longer work.
Because marketing automation is such a strong tool for streamlining your business activities, the iOS 15 update was one of the most main challenges that email marketers had to overcome.
Email Deliverability Optimization
A high-performing and successful email marketing strategy are created on the foundation of email deliverability. Deliverability tracking was also affected by the deletion of a large piece of open data.
This score is the most important indicator that your email delivery method needs to be changed.
Customer Behavior-Based Segmentation
To send quality and relevant content, segmenting your list is a good idea. Many of these parts that relied on open and IP data stopped working after the iOS update.
Due to data restrictions, a segment formed to target non-openers with customized content can no longer function.
Use Of Real-Time Data
Another aspect of the new version that has been impacted is the use of live data. When the feature was disabled, marketers who used countdown timers in their eCommerce email marketing campaigns ran into issues.
Cleaning Your Email List
Email list cleaning is a procedure that can help you optimize a variety of areas of your email strategy, including deliverability, sender credibility, and conversions.
However, to execute effective list cleansing, you must track subscriber activity and delete inactive people. This approach was made more challenging due to a lack of data.
Now that you have a better understanding of how iOS 15 affects you, let’s look at ways you can improve your email marketing strategy.
6 Best Ways To Optimize Email Marketing In 2022 After The New IOS 15 Updates
Rethink Your Metrics
The most significant change is that marketers will no longer be able to rely on open rates as a dependable metric. As a result, marketers will be unable to A/B test email subject lines or know who are their most active subscribers. Make new metrics, such as conversions or income earned per campaign, a priority.
Pay Attention to Other Email Marketing Metrics
As previously said, there are a variety of email metrics you can use to determine whether or not your audience is engaging with your email marketing campaigns.
Your click-through rate is another important metric that is unaffected by the changes. Tracking clicks will assist you in identifying subscribers who are actively engaging with your content. The data may then be easily compared to the number of emails sent to draw conclusions regarding user engagement.
In addition to your click-through rate, you can track the traffic generated by your iOS 15 users as well as your conversion rate. Lastly, you should pay special attention to bounce rates and unsubscribes.
These analytics will show you if your campaigns are engaging your audience enough and will assist you to improve your email list management. If these figures are low, you should concentrate on improving your content.
Use Past Customer Data
While we’re on the subject of data, another wonderful way to improve your approach is to use past customer insights. You may go back to previous reports and examine how your iOS users reacted to your campaigns by focusing on your past open rate statistics. You can get better results by creating reports on campaigns that had a lot of opens or clicks and using them as templates for your upcoming emails.
After you’ve gone through your historical data again, combine it with your bounce, unsubscribe, and click-through metrics to find engagement patterns. Remember that having a deeper understanding of your iOS users is the first step towards providing them with relevant content.
So, now that you’ve gathered all of the necessary data, what’s next?
Use Data to Focus on Personalized service
Use third-party enhancement to better understand your users, including demographics, lifestyle data, and behavioral insights, to customize your outreach even further.
Focus on First-Party Data Collection
In a privacy-conscious society, a consumer’s first-party data will become extremely important. In fact, for more targeted messaging, consumers are typically ready to give this information directly to brands. Offer temptations to provide this data, such as contests, coupons, discounts, or participation in a loyalty club, by being upfront about what you’re utilizing their data for.
Salesforce found that 57 percent of consumers are willing to disclose personal data in exchange for personalized offers or discounts in a poll of more than 7,000 people. Similarly, 52% of shoppers would disclose personal information in exchange for product recommendations, and 53% for personalized shopping experiences.
Email is one of the most cost-effective and dynamic methods of communicating with your users. Even though the email landscape is evolving and marketers must adapt, the effectiveness of this high-performing platform is not going away anytime soon.
Experiment with Other Channels
Email marketing is one of the most cost-effective digital marketing channels available, but it’s not the only one!
As the iOS 15 update will affect your engagement and client retention efforts, SMS marketing, and online push notifications will be useful to reach your audience with relevant messages.
Social media is also important since it is a tool you can use to significantly increase your nurturing efforts. You may interact with your followers and provide them with relevant material using Facebook’s Custom Audiences function, for example.
Whatever you select, make sure your iPhone users get the greatest possible experience. Remember, the goal of a strong email marketing plan is to establish value and trust, not to make as many sales as possible.
Change is an unavoidable fact of life; welcome it as soon as possible to find a solution that will reduce any negative consequences.
Apple’s announcement isn’t the first time the company has changed its mind about privacy, and it won’t be the last.
Even if the world is changing in ways that pose issues for digital and email marketers, it doesn’t mean you can’t keep innovating your strategy to meet prospects and audiences where they are.
Teamwork, as we like to say, makes the dream come true! So choose your tools properly if you want to achieve something in the long run!
Go have your say in the comment section and let us know how this piece of content has helped you in optimizing email marketing and helped you scale more post-IOS 15 update
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