Apple’s upcoming Mail Privacy Protection feature may be a triumph for data privacy, but marketers may not be cheering for it. The update will hide data about email open rates across all iOS, Mac, and Apple Watch platforms, a sign of how seriously Apple treats data privacy. However, Apple’s email platforms account for 46% of all email opens, meaning this feature will have a big impact on marketing teams around the world.
Shifting Email Success Metrics
Several solutions exist today that can help marketing teams revise and measure their campaign success. For example, the Salesforce B2B marketing platform, Pardot, is also focused on privacy but includes features that allow marketers to measure customer interactions. Regardless of the platform, marketing teams need to shift their focus on success metrics and use this moment to gain deeper insights about their prospects. Consider these ideas:
1. Email open rates have always been an unreliable metric. For every HTML email, a text version is also sent, and this text-only email never records an email open action. Relying solely on email opens as an engagement metric thus fails to reflect the actions of people who prefer the text-only version.
2. If marketers want to continue measuring open rates, there is a way to obtain a more accurate metric. A feature of Salesforce, Datorama, goes deep into email engagement metrics to identify the percentage of users that use Apple mail. This makes it possible to isolate and measure non-Apple mail clients.
3. Marketers may want to shift to tracking and reporting all email clicks and not solely open rates. This can enable them to revisit and adjust any buyer journeys that were developed, looking for insights from those journeys with the highest email open rates. Pardot allows reporting and various actions on specific link clicks. This makes reporting more relevant and focused on the real intent of the email: getting people to a landing page.
4. Consider ditching the open email vanity metrics. If you are just measuring opens, you should reconsider the goal of an email campaign. The goal should be to get a user to interact with the brand. Use the 360 degree view on buyers to unify all of their interactions with data from web analytics and the sales database. This allows a detailed analysis to learn what is motivating engagement with your customers.
5. Finally, use Pardot's lightning mail builder and leverage the new, powerful, Einstein Artificial Intelligence feature called send time optimisation. Our experience with this feature has shown increased click through rates; when engagement increases, the chance of creating opportunities increases, which is the whole point of a campaign.
Initially, marketing teams may see the Apple privacy update as a setback in terms of collecting meaningful, actionable, engagement data. Instead, this should be seen as an opportunity to refocus on the data and insights that really move the revenue needle in a positive direction. The evolving landscape of privacy will not stop here. By embracing it, being transparent, and remembering who is ultimately trusting us with their data –customers – marketers can become better at their craft by deepening their insights and putting the customer first.