Sextant marketing explains how new apple ios 14 privacy policy will affect higher education marketing

Apple's iOS 14 and the Impact on Digital Marketing for Higher Ed.

Sextant marketing explains how new apple ios 14 privacy policy will affect higher education marketing

If you’re in digital marketing and use Facebook to reach your customers, chances are you’ve heard about the current digital war going on between Facebook and Apple.

Apple’s policy changes for iOS 14 and Facebook’s support for small (and big) businesses are in the news, and we’re breaking it down for you!

Read on to find out exactly what Apple is changing, how Facebook responds to the policy changes, how your business, particularly higher-ed., might be impacted, and what steps digital marketers can take to prepare.

Apple Privacy Policy Issues - What is Changing

At its annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) last June, Apple announced a significant change in its AppTrackingTransparency framework for iOS 14 and iPadOS 14.

As of December 2020, Apple requires developers to get user opt-in permission for accessing the IDFA, or Identifier for Advertisers. If you’re not familiar, the IDFA is a device identifier assigned to a specific device. Marketers use the IDFA for targeting and tracking potential customers across apps.

Facebook Response to Apple’s Policy Changes

For its part, Facebook has sharply criticized Apple’s new policy, stating it adversely impacts small businesses that depend on personalized ads to reach their customers.

On a webpage launched voicing its opposition to the change, Facebook says that Apple’s new policy will “limit your ability to effectively reach, understand, and engage people on mobile devices and across the web.”

While Facebook disagrees with Apple’s “policy and approach,” it states that it has “no choice but to show Apple’s prompt. If we don’t, they will block Facebook from the App Store.”

iOS 14 Impact on Higher Education Marketing

Apple’s policy change will make it harder for colleges and universities to reach prospective students and parents, which could limit their enrollment growth.

Apple ios 14 privacy policyiOS14 users opting-out from third-party data tracking limits ad personalization and performance reporting for both app and web conversion events.

Facebook does not foresee that the iOS change will cause a complete loss of personalization but believes that the trend is in that direction.

Here’s what higher education marketers can anticipate as a result:

  • Changes in Facebook advertising tools, targeting, delivery, measurement, and reporting.
  • A decrease in Website Custom Audience sizes will negatively impact retargeting efforts.

Specifically, these changes will limit your ability to:

  • Effectively deliver ads to people based on their engagement with your business.
  • Measure and report on conversions from certain customers.
  • Ensure your ads are delivered to the most relevant audiences at the right. frequency.
  • Accurately attribute app installs to people using iOS 14 and later.
  • Predict and optimize cost per action over time and efficiently allocate budgets.

To help navigate these changes, Facebook will begin processing pixel conversion events from iOS devices using Aggregated Event Measurement. “This will support your efforts to preserve user privacy and help you run effective campaigns,” says Facebook.

How You Can Prepare for the Change

Facebook has published detailed information on steps digital marketers can take to adapt to Apple’s new policy.

Here’s a quick breakdown of the most important considerations.

For web advertisers:

  • Verify your domain in Facebook Business Manager. Doing so gives businesses the ability to configure conversion events for their domain. According to Facebook, “domain verification must be done for the effective top-level domain plus one (eTLD+1). This can help ensure that your domain verification will encompass all variations.”
  • Facebook will pause ad sets prioritizing more than 8 conversion events. Prepare to prioritize for a maximum number of 8 conversion events per domain.
  • Get ready for changes in attribution reporting inside Facebook Ads Manager.
  • Be on the lookout for campaign optimization strategies that may require testing and changes in bidding strategies.

For app advertisers:

App advertisers using the Facebook SDK should update to version 8.1 or above. Facebook also recommends other steps especially for app marketers that you can read about here. 

What's beyond (or before) third-party data?

Marketers today are heavily reliant on third-party data. According to a recent study conducted by Epsilon, 69 percent of the respondents believe that eliminating third-party cookies and IDFA will have a greater impact than CCPA and GDPR.

“2020 has been a year of seeing online identifiers fade away,” states the Epsilon report.  “In January, Google announced that it’s phasing out third-party cookies (3PCs) in Chrome. In June, Apple made a similar announcement about changes coming to IDFA.”

Businesses and advertisers now realize that it’s time to take control of their first-party data. It is a valuable, cost-effective, asset and comes with minimal privacy concerns.

Tech giants like Google and Apple will continue to tighten restriction on data that can be shared. Because of this, the priority for businesses of any size is collecting and strategizing around first-party data.

How Sextant Will Help You Navigate This Change

From helping build a robust first-party dataset to email nurturing and content marketing, Sextant Marketing has the expertise and deep integration that brings success to your enrollment campaigns. As your marketing partner, we’ll help you stay above the fray as Apple, Facebook, and others battle it out.

With targeted relationship marketing, we can help you take control of your first-party data and streamline your marketing efforts.

Email Nurturing - Building Relationships

Sextant is a SharpSpring silver partner. We can fully integrate and automate your inbound email campaigns, whatever CRM you use. Our future-focused, data-driven suite of tools helps nurture not only relationships, but also your valuable first-party data.

Relevant Content is King

Sextant helps you plan and execute effective content marketing. With relevant, engaging, SEO-optimized content, lead generation dovetails seamlessly with email and social media marketing.

Sextant understands the specific challenges faced by higher education. Apple’s new policy is one such challenge. But challenges bring opportunities. “The digital marketing landscape is constantly evolving and presenting new opportunities,” says Jessica Banich, Vice President of Marketing Services. “Everyone at Sextant works hard to identify and implement technology that will benefit our university partners.”

online higher education

What Does the Rush for Colleges to Go Remote Mean for Online Higher Education?

online learning for higher education

The tectonic shifts rolling through nearly every aspect of society in the spring and summer of 2020 have had a profound impact on the world of higher education. The sudden shuttering of on-campus classes and the rush to move to a remote setting put many colleges and universities on “wartime footing,” according to an article in the LA Times.

The displacement of expectations and circumstances presents a challenge for teachers and students unprepared for such a fundamental shift. For many, it feels like uncharted territory. The good news is that there is, indeed, a chart.

With the pangs of change brought on by the pandemic, the broader discussion of the efficacy of online higher education comes to the fore. What does the rush to get classes up and running remotely portend for the future of online learning?

With insight from some of our clients, we discuss what online learning means and how the rush to remote learning impacts the future of online higher education.

Remote vs. Online Learning

It is important to remember that remote learning is not the same as online learning.

“Well-planned online learning experiences are meaningfully different from courses offered online in response to a crisis or disaster,” says an Educause article entitled The Difference Between Emergency Remote Teaching and Online Learning. “Colleges and universities working to maintain instruction during the COVID-19 pandemic should understand those differences when evaluating this emergency remote teaching.”

The article goes on to warn that “the temptation to compare online learning to face-to-face instruction in these circumstances will be great”. Such a comparison is “highly problematic,” say the authors. A confusion in terms (emergency remote vs. online learning) leads to fundamental misconceptions about “online learning”.

“Established programs have experienced faculty trained to teach online, years of course development, content refinement, and measured student outcomes,” says Dean Gething, Vice President of Client Services at Sextant Marketing. 

Compounding the crisis-induced move of on-campus courses to remote learning is the reality of the pandemic in every other aspect of life. Comparing this to what Gething describes betrays the efficacy of well- planned, intentional, student-centered online learning.

Lessons Learned

Assuming the abrupt shift brought on from the health crisis equates to established online learning denies the value of one to inform the other. The lessons already learned. Once the initial task of providing access to course material is accomplished, attention must turn to a holistic focus on the student experience.

“Part of that discussion should include how students adapt,” says Mike Taberski, former Vice President of Student Affairs at New England College. “This goes beyond basic adaption to learning online and includes socio-economic factors, availability of computers, wifi at home, and the availability of designated space to work within the home free of disruptions.”

“Schools must discover what students need to effectively go online,” Taberski says. “How can the school help them with technology like laptops, and the availability of free or affordable wifi?”

“Tech is so advanced now that it is allowing us to be just as engaging in video (and) remotely as we can be in person,” says Lisa Csencsits, Associate Director of Leadership Development and Human Resource Development at Cornell University. “We have the ability to see each other, interact, and participate in group chats.” Students in major metropolitan centers will typically have access to broadband and fast wifi, easily able to take advantage of the advanced technology that Csencsits describes. An important lesson is remembering this is not always the case, especially in underserved areas.

“The needs assessment should change to accommodate how students will learn in a virtual setting,” says Wayne Lesperance, Vice President of Academic Affairs at New England College. “Some more rural communities did not have access to good wifi,” Lesperance says.

Whether technical, socio-economic, or course design the takeaway lesson is ‘how will this improve the student experience’?

In the Educause article Student-Centered Remote Teaching: Lessons Learned from Online Education, author Shannon Riggs says the “most significant” lesson learned from established online learning is how to create a “student-centered perspective” in this new learning environment.

Put simply, as Taberski says, “Keep students engaged and happy.”

Student-Centered Learning in a Community of Inquiry

One of the principal arguments from detractors of online higher learning is of the disconnect of human interaction when education is mediated between computer screens. Research counters such thinking, going all the way back to 2000 when online learning was in its infancy.

The paper Critical Inquiry in a Text-Based Environment: Computer Conferencing in Higher Education argues that “a worthwhile educational experience is embedded within a Community of Inquiry that is composed of teachers and students - the key participants in the educational process”.

The paper goes on to describe how three types of “presence” serve as a foundation for a Community of Inquiry:

  • Cognitive presence: This entails how well communication is understood and sparks a “sense of meaning” among members of a community.
  • Social presence: Social presence is broadly defined as allowing individuals to express their emotions and exert their personality into the community.
  • Teaching presence: This is about an intentional, well-planned, and implemented instructional design.

Both research and experience prove the “considerable potential” of online student-centered “communities of inquiry” in higher education. It is a potential already realized by top universities across the country.

Is the Future of Online Education a Hybrid Model?

To the letter, every one of the clients with whom we spoke talked of a “blended approach” as a future model for higher education.

“The theme is adaptability,” says NEC’s  Mike Taberski.

“The future may be a much more blended reality, and then the students will be in the position to choose what they want and maybe choose a little of each,” Taberski says.

“In theory,” write Vijay Govindarajan and Anup Srivastava in Harvard Business Review, “lectures that require little personalization or human interaction can be recorded as multimedia presentations, to be watched by students at their own pace and place.” Govindarajan and Srivastava describe a starting point for a hybrid model, but the ideas of a student-centered community must - and can - always prevail.

“Everything you build should have the potential to go online,” says Taberski. That includes student support and social interaction.

“There is more opportunity to interact with peers in a virtual space, says Cornell’s Lisa Csencsits. “through chats, email, and other connections even outside the sessions, and not just on breaks but chats within the class time. There is more personal interaction with the professors too for the same reasons."

Students enjoy interacting and sharing “a more diverse perspective” doing so with people “possibly all over the world”. It brings richer dialogue and perspectives,” Csencsits says.

Building on Campus Traditions for Online Higher Education

The current situation notwithstanding, online learning does not replace on-campus education. Nor is it a distant “second-best”. Online higher education broadens the scope and builds on the best traditions of on-campus learning. They are mutually inclusive.

What does the future of online education look like? We don’t have a crystal ball. What we do have are data and experience. We have an established model for online higher education. We know that the world will not be the same in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Research into college enrollment and related factors by Mckinsey indicates “steadiness” in the short term, but an “uncertain future” ahead. And why should higher education be any different than the rest of the economy?

Learn from the trial and error of the past few months, adopt the lessons already learned. Keep students at the center of everything you do. Learn from and incorporate campus traditions.

Whether in a lecture hall or online, the goal is the same (or should be) for all educators: guiding their students in the learning process.

What happened in the spring of 2020 when on-campus classes went remote under crisis circumstances is not online learning. It is important to remember that. Some detractors may seize this crisis as proof that online higher education isn’t effective. They’ve got it backward.

Even in a crisis, educators managed to get their classes accessible remotely and support their students and instructors.  It was a learning experience for everyone. For those more prepared, the transition came easier. For everyone, the future is clear. Education is moving online. “Just be prepared,” says Mike Taberski.