iOS17 is coming for the remains of attribution, TikTok's new AI scripting tool, and more.
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SIDE NOTE: It's been a relatively slow news week, with the exception of the big Apple announcement, which was a pretty big announcement worth covering on its own, so it's a short Round Up today. As always, if there's anything you want to see added to the Round Up please let me know by replying to this email.
SIDE NOTE v2: This meme hits home.
APPLE IS BACK WITH PRIVACY CHANGES
As part of Apple's recent conference, they announced iOS17, the latest update to Apple's operating system. With every update, Apple introduces a new change that affects the digital advertising world in some meaningful way, and this is no different. It's giving me iOS14+ flashbacks.
With iOS17, Apple has introduced automation that will remove all UTM parameters from links that open in private browsing experiences. Yes, they will be altering your links and removing all tracking parameters. This is crazy, but thankfully this is only for private browsing, which isn't largely adopted... for now. Considering that rolling this out across all links would hugely benefit Apple's advertising platform and ecosystem at large, it seems very likely that this eventually expands beyond only private browsing in the near future. If this happens, it spells a massive change for the advertising industry. Effectively, UTMs will be dead.
For a deep dive into all privacy-related changes, check out this article by Alex Bauer, who summarized everything you need to know. Otherwise, you can check out 9to5's full breakdown on the link tracking portion of the iOS17 update below:
ECOMM INDUSTRY REPORT FOR MAY 2023
As previously mentioned, Shoelace has started doing a monthly industry report for eCommerce brands. In this report, I cover how different industries performed for the month in regard to AOV, CPA, ROAS, and CTR.
In May, we saw a general uptick in average performance mostly across the boards. In harmony, as expected, CPA and ROAS climbed, while we saw no meaningful trend in AOV. We also included CTR data here for an additional layer of insights.
TIKTOK'S AI SCRIPT GENERATOR
TikTok has added a new AI-powered tool to help you create better TikToks with its new Script Generator. Found within its Creative Center, it is able to map out video concepts based on your prompts. With the information you provide, the system will then churn out a selection of sample video scripts, each including a hook, scene, and a call to action, with both audio and visual cues to include. TikTok does warn that any AI-generated content may not be accurate, which at this point should've largely assumed when working with AI anyways. You can test out the new script creator here.
AD PLATFORM PERFORMANCE
As part of a new weekly-recurring series, I will include ad platform conversion metrics generously provided by Northbeam*, a popular ad attribution platform. From now, in every edition of The Round Up, you'll get data on how conversion metrics on all major platforms changed each week.
To start, we have a sea of red. This is likely a hangover from the Memorial Day sale weekend that saw a significant increase in conversions for most brands who participated. With the sale weekend coming to an end, we see metrics dropping, though this is likely just 'resetting' back to normal, so not as dire as it may seem at a glance.
*Transparency: This is an affiliate link. That said, I will never endorse a platform that I do not believe provides meaningful value, whether it's an affiliate link, sponsor, etc. If you'd prefer, this is a non-affiliated link you can use instead.
KFC — CHICKEN FOR BREAKFAST
In a new ad campaign featuring Trevor Noah, KFC is asking the hard-hitting questions: What happened to chicken for breakfast? This ad does a great job of blending a natural-feeling celebrity feature, a unique concept, and humour without going too far. While I feel like the actual product, unfortunately, takes a back seat to the message, I love it regardless. If this was a campaign about a specific new menu item centered around breakfast foods, then I am unsure what it is after watching this, but I enjoyed the journey either way. Am I going to start eating chicken for breakfast after seeing this? Maybe.
VOLKSWAGEN — TOUAREG PARKING ASSIST
This new ad from Volkswagen, spotlighting the new Touareg's parking assist feature, is brimming with personality. While some commercials have a way of meandering too far from the subject (see above), this ad beautifully balances both content and substance. Do I feel bad for the dry cleaners? Yes. Why? I don't know. They were probably the ones parking those dirty cars there in the first place, right? So much depth in storytelling in only 70 seconds. This one is simple, but it's still a hit for me. Side note: that parking assist feature kind of scares me.
AI TEXT-TO-VIDEO BLUE JAYS COMMERCIAL?
Twitter user Josh Shiaman did precisely this. In an attempt to use text-to-video prompts to produce a commercial for Blue Jays, Josh may have created one of this generation's greatest horrors. While we aren't exactly where we need to be with AI video, I think it's so perfectly in tune with current events that it makes this ad special. I genuinely believe that due to so much talk about AI currently, Blue Jays could run this spot, and it would generate a lot of buzz — but despite initial expectations, I think it would be positively received. Check out his Twitter post with the full video here.
The reply from Toronto Blue Jays was great, too:
Have a great week,Cory