How Apple’s data policies are making life difficult for TikTok

In a piece headlined “TikTok advertiser says Apple data rules make sales harder to track,” Ad Age’s Garett Sloane relates the experience of a marketing consultant, August Noble, who ran a July test on TikTok for a consumer health packaged goods client. 

“On TikTok, it was massive,” Noble said of the leap in revenue—but unfortunately he couldn’t draw a clear line between the TikTok activation and that sales increase.

As Sloane explains, “Apple’s anti-data policies made it so apps cannot track a consumer from an ad view to a sale. Once a consumer leaves an app like TikTok to make a purchase, the ‘conversion’ is undetectable, unless the consumer allowed the app to track them. That is part of Apple’s App Tracking Transparency rules, which took effect last year. The loss of ‘signal’ on Apple software—iOS—wreaked havoc on marketers’ measurement schemes.”

“Attribution isn’t perfect from any of these platforms, Noble told Sloane, “but the gap that we’re seeing with TikTok is bigger than any other.”

Essential context: “These kinks in the ad machinery are affecting TikTok, Meta and everyone else, according to ad tech specialists,” Sloane adds. “And all platforms are coming up with their own models to measure ads based on the limited data that Apple now shares through SKAdNetwork, which reports broad performance metrics from ad campaigns.”

Keep reading here.

See also: “How Meta is combatting Apple data limits with ad targeting automation and AI,” also from Ad Age’s Sloane.


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