Updated: Feb 23
Tim Cook, CEO of Apple and Mark Zuckerburg of Facebook are in a fight - and the loser may be your advertising.
Apple says they want to protect their customers privacy from Facebook. Facebook says Apple is too expensive to actually care about their customers and are hurting small business owners.
What does it all mean for your business?
For the record, many other tech writers have addressed this topic more extensively than we will take the time to do here. This feud goes back to 2014. See end of article for more reading options.
This article is a stripped down version, “What YOU, the business owner need to know” in order to make educated decisions about your marketing plans.
Here are the facts.
1. No giant tech company actually respects your privacy.
If you are concerned about your data being tracked, stolen, or given to the government, you must take steps like a clean ip address, a routed VPN, Duck Duck Go, incognito browsing, and basically don’t contact anyone or do anything on the internet.
2. Apple already gave back-door access into their OS (operating system) to the US Gov.
They have more recently been accused of price-gouging on their app store. Now Apple is trying to redeem itself by capitalizing on the mass public distrust of Facebook’s data leak in 2018 by making Facebook look like the bad guy.
3. Apple recently released an update that allows its users to opt-in, rather than being in by default, to Facebook data tracking.
Why is this a thing? Facebook normally tracks the data of its users across any device its app is connected to. So, if you have the Facebook app on your phone, Facebook can track what you search via Google on your phone, or what music you listen to on Spotify. Then use that data when companies on Facebook want to choose their target advertising audience.
4. Facebook says Apple's move is bad for small business.
Facebook says this move by Apple to default NOT let them track Apple user’s data will hurt small businesses by making it more difficult for them to use Facebook advertising effectively.
5. Facebook’s not wrong.
Facebook advertising has become a great low-cost option for small businesses and entrepreneurs to get the word out. Since the Covid crisis, more and more businesses can ONLY drive traffic through digital channels to their products and services.
Is Facebook the only place small businesses can advertise? No. But it really doesn’t have a close second, especially for low budget ads. It is still the most used of all social media platforms, and running ads there requires the least time and effort - therefore it is an excellent, low barrier-t0-entry solution for anyone just starting out, or hurting because of the pandemic.
Do people have the right to not have their data tracked? Absolutely! But here’s the issue in our humble opinion: Our data IS tracked, on EVERYTHING. There has been a kind of “gentleman’s agreement” in place that as long as these companies could use our data, these platforms would remain free, easy to use, and accessible to anyone. If some tech giants start not playing nicely with others...it can end up making things more costly for the end-user.
6. Apple may have the moral high-ground on this one.
Until that is….Facebook creates or buys a mobile phone company, and then deletes its app from the Apple store. Imagine that.
What if next year, Facebook wasn't accessible on Apple phones? It could happen. Until another social media platform gains the same traction and seamless UX as Facebook...my money is on people getting a new device before they give up posting dog pics to their friends and family.
Moral Of The Story:
Currently, no tech company is a constant when it comes to a strategy to market your business. Social media is changing daily, new platforms are emerging, and then shifting faster than ever before.
The best thing a business owner can do right now is build their customer list. While you have access to social media, use it to drive traffic to your website, build an email & phone list, focus on direct communication with your customers.
For more ideas to optimize digital tools and a strategy that works for your specific industry and product, please don't hesitate to reach out and set up an initial consult with us. We love to see business owners win.
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