What Do Apple’s Privacy Changes Mean for Email Marketing?

  • Date Published
  • Categories Blog
  • Reading Time 3-Minute Read

There are a lot of thoughts around Apple’s latest changes: see our perspective on the shifting landscape of email marketing.

As you may have heard, the tech giant’s making alterations to their native email client, notedly to “prevent senders from knowing when [a person] opens an email, and masks their IP address so it can’t be linked to other online activity or used to determine their location.” We’re here to help you understand and navigate the changes to come in the marketing landscape.

Email Marketing and Open Rates: an Imperfect Relationship

The number of people opening an email seems like a surefire way to measure interest, and in many ways, it is an extremely helpful metric; it’s often used as an input for user engagement models and can be used as a suppression mechanism. But this thinking may not account for the entirety of user behavior. For example, a number of people open emails simply to mark them as “Read”, and these false positives, which may ultimately skew results, however, the exact impact of this is not known.

In addition, typical best email practices involve a high degree of A/B subject line testing, which requires having an open signal, so this will likely evolve into more focus around content and audience-based testing.

Moving Forward

At Ragnarok, we’ve taken a holistic approach to email performance results for years, examining metrics like purchases, site visits, and Click-Through Rates (CTR). We’re also leaders in cross-channel marketing and consistently utilize in-app, push, text, and SMS notifications to augment communication tools, which can serve as additional inputs of engagement beyond an email open. For marketers, this may mean reducing reliance on email by spreading communications across more channels, giving users more opportunities to engage and providing a more accurate signal of their intent to stay in touch.

If you’d like to learn more about these changes and how we operate, don’t hesitate to contact us to talk about creating a new, comprehensive marketing plan.

Mail Protection Privacy (MPP)

In essence, Apple’s new Mail Protection Privacy screens a user’s emails for tracking pixels on the Apple Mail app and then presents it to the user. More technically, the Apple Mail app downloads an email, caches the images and creates a copy within the Apple Privacy Cache. If the email is opened, the user is shown the copy, precluding marketers from gleaning results.