How Publishers Can Make Their iOS Ad Inventory More Addressable

April 12, 2021
How Publishers Can Make Their iOS Ad Inventory More Addressable

For years now, user-level targeting has underpinned the programmatic in-app advertising landscape. The more an advertiser knew about your users, the more valuable your users would be to them – and the more money you could command from eCPMs.

This formula becomes less straightforward once iOS 14.5 is live. By requiring users to specifically opt-in to having data about them used for advertising purposes, Apple will make it harder for app publishers to have this valuable targeting information on their iOS app users. This can have a significant difference on your advertising bottom line, with eCPMs expected to drop by 35% on supply where Apple’s Identifier for Advertisers (IDFA) is not available.

But there are options available to help publishers make their ad inventory more available. Considering that ad impressions targeting users where the IDFA is available will like command premium prices once iOS 14.5 is live, publishers should think about making their inventory more addressable. Here are some tips to consider:

1. First-Party Data is Your Friend

With user data about to become a premium in the iOS ecosystem, any data that you can collect from your app users will be especially valuable. Options to collect this kind of data include user loyalty/rewards programs or user accounts/logins. Not only do these options enable you to better understand your users and their wants and needs, but they also are invaluable for providing a richer, more personalized app experience.

InMobi can help here through client-side audience segmentation. To learn more about how this can work, check out our guide on the topic, In-App Advertising In A Post-IDFA World.

2. Try Soft Prompts

It is important to note that Apple has provided very strict and specific guidance around how the IDFA opt-in prompt is displayed and what language is used for that pop-up. However, one option to consider is to display or provide language to users before that pop-up appears that explains why the opt-in language will be shown and why you collect user data. 

These so-called soft prompts can provide critical insights and context not available just from the default IDFA opt-in pop-up, which can help potentially convince some users to opt-in. According to a recent survey from Singular, over 49% of people polled said they would “will be more willing to allow tracking if apps can explain why they want users’ data.”

3. Integrate with Universal IDs

Users who do opt into IDFA collection are also opting into targeting and data sharing in a broader sense. This means that identifiers beyond IDFA can be leveraged for this cohort — namely, universal IDs (UIDs). With people consuming media across a wide variety of environments (websites, mobile apps, CTV apps, etc.), UIDs enable brands and agencies to better understand how their audience’s entire decision-making process.

It is important to note that no one UID has emerged as the gold standard, with many options out there in the marketplace. That means that savvy publishers will need to integrate with multiple UIDs, to ensure they can support whichever one a particular advertiser prefers. 

To help with this process, we are currently rolling out UnifID, a platform that will serve as a single point of integration with major UIDs for app publishers and developers. Think of it as a mediation solution for UIDs. To learn more about UnifID, check out this blog post.

Issues around privacy and user consent are nothing new. Between GDPR, CCPA, and now ATT, these concerns have been at the forefront for some time now. But through thoughtful action now, publishers can place themselves in the best position to both respect the rights of their users and make their ad inventory as valuable as possible.