After Apple’s iOS 14.5 upgrade in mid-2021, businesses have been scrambling to find new ways to connect with their customers and build marketing campaigns around them.
Users are now able to refuse sharing their data websites and social media platforms collect and sell to businesses as they browse the internet. This change has summoned a new era called the “post-pixel world.”
Read on to discover new marketing strategies that you can use to get ahead of the competition and connect with your customers.
iOS 14.5 Changes
Previously, when a customer entered your website, a tracking pixel would pick up on information like their contact information and browsing history which would be later used for personalization and targeted ads.
Now, Apple’s release of iOS 14.5 (and later system updates) prompts users to accept or block tracking when they browse the internet. This new dynamic has drastically changed the relationship between brands and their (prospective) customers.
Apple defines tracking as “the act of linking user or device data collected from your app with user or device data collected from other companies’ apps, websites, or offline properties for targeted advertising or advertising measurement purposes.” This means, for example, that when a customer accepts the data-tracking prompt before entering a retail store’s app or website, they allow that app/website to record how they navigate the website and collect their contact information.
In turn, this information is shared to Facebook or Instagram so that when the customer eventually leaves the website, businesses can present them with retargeting ads of the exact items they browsed prior. To that end, businesses will need to include a prompt that aligns with the App Tracking Transparency framework before customers enter their websites.
Now, companies need to find new ways to stand out to their customers, fulfill their shoppers’ needs, and incentivize them to share their information.
Marketing Strategies to Succeed in a Post-Pixel World
The basis of customer engagement has always been, and still is, about building a long-term relationship through trust and understanding. This means prompting customers to share their contact informations and preferences to enable future interactions after they leave your site. These characteristics could include their concerns, interests, communication styles, etc.
Here are some creative ways to gain data without relying on third-party cookies:
Instead of relying on email for all of your communications, find a new way to re-engage customers. According to Omnisend’s e-commerce marketing statistics report, there was a 378% increase in SMS messaging between 2019 and 2020 with impressive ROI (return on investment). SMS can help develop a direct relationship with the customer rather than relying on third-party retargeting methods.
Focus on the Customer Experience
Apple’s iOS 14.5 policy has pushed businesses to find creative ways to engage their customers and build an experience that will leave a lasting impression on them. This can be how you communicate your level of inventory for popular items, or how you suggest new products based on the past interests of your customers.
A sophisticated customer database management system can optimize how you approach your customers’ data to help maximize your customer engagement and retention efforts.
If your business is eager to keep up with shoppers’ evolving expectations and omnichannel activities, a powerful customer database management system can help you keep track of changes and enable a seamless e-commerce experience for your shoppers throughout their buying journeys.
Develop Your Social Media Presence
Customers want to feel some level of connection before making a purchase from a company. Your social media pages can offer customers a chance to get to know what your business represents and even subscribe to your offering directly. An omnichannel sales strategy can help you connect your inventory and purchases across platforms for a seamless purchasing and shopping experience.
Each channel you engage your customers on should be customized to their preferences. Direct-to-customer interactions should include helpful links and offerings that will enhance your subscribers’ experiences throughout the buying process.
Perhaps you have a content page that can help customers choose their favorite color palette, or you offer several types of items to satisfy their subscription needs or desires. Whatever the strategy, once a customer is on your website, ensure the experience is as if they were shopping with a sales associate personally.
Supply Chain and Operations
The best way to reach new audiences and maintain low churn is to leverage an order management system, such as SFG’s FlexOMS™. Communicate exactly which items are available and which are not, no matter if a customer is shopping online or mobile, with a powerful customer database management system like FlexOMS™.