Instead of falling into the patterns of other digital marketing agencies, Proshark is revolutionizing the way digital marketing is done. “We aren’t doing this because we want to,” says Joel Phillips, the company’s CEO and founder. “The digital marketing landscape is changing drastically. Those who aren’t able to keep up will be left in the cold. Our mission is to help companies prepare for these changes.”
Apple and Google are enacting privacy policies that transform digital marketing
E-commerce through mobile devices is skyrocketing. In fact, Retail Touchpoint predicted over 54% of internet sales would be transacted over mobile devices by the end of 2021. Just as over half the nation’s commerce moves toward mobile devices, however, both Apple and Google are enacting new privacy regulations that hamstring digital marketers.
Apple impacted 40% of the market when they changed tracking on IOS apps from “default” to “opt-in.” Tracking online behavior has been the cornerstone of advertising on platforms since the beginning of digital marketing. For example, Facebook tailors advertisements for users based on their internet activity. Now, however, consumers can choose whether they want third-party marketers to see their online actions or not.
According to CNBC, Google is enacting similar policies on Android mobile devices, which account for the remaining 60% of the market. If all goes as expected, Google will give the option for its users to close off third-party tracking by the end of 2022. At that point, Apple and Google will have almost completely closed tracking and targeting for third-party marketers.
How privacy policies will impact third-party marketers
“Everybody is applauding this push for privacy, but it is a bit premature to break out the champagne,” warns Phillips. “We should be asking ourselves why these policies are emerging now. The timing is more than a little suspect.”
What does this mean for third-party marketers and platforms who have built businesses relying on this data? It means that to access online users, they will be forced to go through Apple and Google directly.
“Big tech companies are not consumer heroes with a sudden desire to protect data,” says Phillips.” These privacy policies will render previous methods of digital marketing useless. We already see severely diminished marketing ROI. Only six to thirteen percent of Apple device users opted to allow third-party tracking, and marketers are scrambling. They are being sent back to the stone age from a consumer knowledge perspective.”
Who benefits from these new policies? Apple and Google now have exclusive rights to consumer data. The highest bidders will now be the ones with access to advertising platforms and data. Not surprisingly, the use of Apple’s advertising platform is skyrocketing because they still have access to their own consumer’s data.
How to prepare for the new digital marketing landscape
Unfortunately, few digital marketing agencies are taking these changes into consideration. “The majority of agencies are doing things the same old way, and their marketing return has fallen off a cliff,” comments Phillips. “Countering the move to protect privacy requires drastic changes in the way companies interact with consumers.”
As marketers adapt to the lack of data, they will have to learn who their clients really are and develop an intimate knowledge of their products. Data mining and inference will become second nature for the companies of the future. Developing outreach channels and loyal communities will become the requirements of successful marketing.
“These moves are just an indicator of what is coming,” Phillips predicts. “Apple and Google will continue to fence off data because it is the most valuable commodity they own. As we have said over the past year, start collecting data now before it is gone. As a company, your community is your strongest asset. Start building for that now, not tomorrow.”