Apple Privacy Policy Affects Small Business'

Pumpkin Spice season approaches, and that means the next iOS is right around the corner. Just like the last couple updates, Apple has announced a repertoire of new privacy features for iOS 16 to help protect users’ privacy. Android 13 released just yesterday with some new privacy features as well but for now is still behind Apple. Data protection is important for users, but how does it affect the metrics you collect for effective of your marketing?

Data Collection and Privacy

The data you receive from consumers, users, and your audience is incredibly informative. Information like what products someone views or what pages someone visits, allows you to tailor your promotions or content to their interests. It lets you communicate effectively and efficiently. It shows you what marketing is working and what is not. All of that can help your company grow. That data and the metrics they create are incredibly important for your business, but for users, that data is also precious. It is something they trust you with, and they do not want that trust and their privacy breached. 

Data privacy has become an increasing concern on the internet. In a KPMG survey from last year, 86% of users were concerned about their data’s privacy. That worry is valid. The past month saw a dozen security violations with large corporations. A mother and daughter were recently shocked and angered when Facebook gave Nebraska police their private message logs. User information is not just a shopping cart or wishlist. It also includes more sensitive, personal information like messages, emails, addresses, and credit cards that users are regularly providing businesses. In turn, many nations and the European Union have passed legislation that restricts when, how, and what kind of data companies can collect. The FTC in the US announced just five days ago that it would be “cracking down on commercial surveillance and lax data security practices.” Software developers and device manufacturers like Apple have also been increasing the default privacy protections they provide. This is great for users’ security but affects the kind of information you can collect and how. 

Apple Privacy – Mail Privacy Protection

Last year, Apple released Mail Privacy Protection (MPP) as part of iOS 15. MPP hides users’ IP addresses so senders cannot see their location, related internet activity, or even whether they opened the email. That’s all potentially valuable information for a business or marketing team. Android lacks a similar feature, but in Canada, over 57% of people are using iPhones. In email tracking services, MPP can also falsely inflate your open rates. Any inbox with MPP active will be recognized in the tracker. However, MPP can open an email without the user ever actually opening and seeing the email for themselves. Unfortunately, a tracker cannot tell the difference whether this was an MPP “open” or your recipient’s. 

Those false positives lead to bloated open rates and a false, larger discrepancy in open-to-click rates. Most email services will allow you to ignore MPP opens, and it is best to do so. They are simply not a reliable or informative data set. Remember, MPP only affects open rates. Your click rates will still be accurate. Focusing on those clicks will allow you to keep track of your engaged audience and ensure your catering to their interests and preferences.

MPP will still deny other information that may valuable, such as location and other internet activity. The goal then, is conversion rates: getting recipients to visit your site, where they can provide you with more information. 

The End of Third-Party Data

The information users provide to your site when they access and use it is first-party data or cookies. This is any information you gather from your customers directly. For the past while, internet advertising has relied primarily on third-party cookies. Third-party data works through websites sharing information between one another. This is how Google Ads and Meta Business (Facebook and Instagram advertising) work. They use a user’s wider internet activity to target them with appropriate ads according to their browsing history. This is why if you put something in your cart on one site, you might suddenly start seeing ads for that very product elsewhere or even everywhere.

More recently, marketing has started moving away from third-party cookies. Some internet browsers have started blocking these trackers by default, like Mozilla Firefox and Safari (remember that 57% market share of Canadian phones?) Apple and Android have similarly been allowing users to block tracking in apps. Notably Google Chrome, which 65% of people worldwide use, still allows third-party trackers. Google has said they will also be blocking them for the past two years, but last month again delayed those plans to 2024. Third-party ads are still an important part of Google Ads, which makes up 80% of the company’s revenue. Similarly, Facebook advertising is a staggering 98% of Meta’s revenue. Those same ads have also been especially important for small businesses. The move away from third-party ad targeting is and will more severely affect smaller businesses that have relied on them to grow and reach potential customers and clients. They will need to invest into new marketing efforts.

Leaving Third-Party Data Behind

So, while third-party cookies will still work for targeting Chrome users, companies should also focus their marketing on first-party data. Your emails and websites can still gather valuable information about your audience and customers as the world moves away from third-party data. As a result, marketing should focus on converting customers. Creative marketing on social media is a productive method for attracting and expanding an audience and convincing potential customers to visit your website. Effective email automations will have customers regularly returning. Fun, survey quizzes with a bonus discount code are a great incentive for customers to provide you with more detailed information.

Rosewood Can Help 

Currently third-party tracking can still prove beneficial for small businesses, but they will see increasing decline in ROI in this sector as Apple and other companies increase dedication to privacy. Rosewood recommends every business start investing into first-party data collection with effective social media, tailored email automations, and creative content that drives conversion rates. 

Rosewood’s web design and marketing services will make sure you are collecting and effectively using that precious data from (potential) customers. We will soon be officially offering email marketing services as well. We are familiar with a suite of both third- and first-party tools and services so you can learn more about your customers and help your business grow in the face of increasing internet privacy. With an elegant website and effective marketing, users will want to trust you with their information.

New Privacy Policy Changes Information Gathered From Customers.
New Rosewood Logo

Rosewood is excited to announce that we have rebranded! 

We are calling this, Rosewood 2.0, as it not only includes our logo, but also our brand identity.

What started in 2015 as a solopreneur venture, offering VA (Virtual Admin) Services and WordPress Websites, quickly evolved into a full-service Digital Marketing Agency powered by an incredible team. This new logo represents a more sophisticated brand and upgraded offerings to allow us to serve a wider range of client shapes and sizes all over the world.

As part of this rebranding exercise we’ve taken the time to clarify our Core Values, Mission, and Vision as a company. 

Rosewood’s Core Values:

  • Honesty: The foundation of meaningful relationships between teams, clients, shareholders, etc.
  • Authenticity: Be true to your mission/vision. Amplify the benefits of your product/service truthfully and without gimmicks. 
  • Strategy: Build a clear strategy before you make a move.
  • Accessibility: Ensure equal access; not just concerning accessibility tools and application, but equal access to effective marketing strategies and solutions.
  • Opportunity Leveraging: Change the mindset from “problem-solving” to “opportunity-leveraging”.
  • Partnership & Collaboration: We work with you, becoming an extension of your team. We truly care about your business and mutual success! 

Mission:

To support geographically-bound service businesses and nonprofits by strategically aligning their marketing efforts with their goals.

Vision:

To amplify awareness and success of local businesses/organizations that contribute positively to their communities. 

Our Approach: Authentic Marketing

We believe that authenticity is key. If you have a valuable product/service that improves the overall quality of your community, we want to help you amplify your message and spread the word. 

We’ve Leveled Up All Our Services, Including:

  • Advanced WordPress Websites
  • Advanced Shopify Stores
  • AODA / WCAG Compliance (Website Accessibility)
  • Advanced PPC Ads: Google, Meta (Facebook/Instagram), LinkedIn, Reddit, etc.
  • Branding:
    • Renaming / Rebranding
    • Service Design
    • Brand Guidelines
  • Social Media Management & Content Creation
  • Photography & Videography
  • Content Writing

What’s New at Rosewood?

  • AGCO Licensed Supplier for Catch the Ace Raffles
  • COMING SOON: Customizable Fundraising Platform for Non-Profits

We are constantly evolving and expanding our services to match the needs of our clients. Rosewood has worked with over 250 businesses/organizations worldwide, and this is just the beginning! 

What do you think of our new logo? We’d love your feedback! 

A brick office.
Female Mentors at Rosewood

Female Mentorship in Marketing

In 2019 McKinsey found that for every 100 men promoted, only 72 women were. In 2021, that number has increased to 86. Women’s professional success increased for one main reason: female mentorship.

Mentors are important in any profession. They provide their mentees with valuable insight and advice from their experience and wisdom. That counsel helps young professionals avoid early pitfalls and make more effective career decisions. It also provides valuable access to professional connections and networking opportunities. Female mentorship is especially valuable. It provides women with professional guidance with feminine perspectives that a masculine mentor will lack. It’s also vital to closing the “broken rug” that keeps women out of manager level positions in most industries.

Rosewood’s own founder, Deanna Simone knows female mentoring has been and continues to be an important part of her career, “While I’ve never had an official mentor, I’ve attracted a circle of incredible women who wouldn’t hesitate to share their successes, failures, and experiences.”

Two women stand out in her mind, “I’ve been fortunate enough to have shadowed two, very important women in business, Hollie Hoadley of Creative Solutions and Nikki Pett of Sigma Promotions. Nikki was the first ‘bad-ass boss babe’ I ever knew, and I worked for her company from ages 14-17. I believe she was one of the sparks of my entrepreneurial journey. Hollie Hoadley is a current mentor. She’s 1-year ahead of me in business and is a constant form of support and inspiration, and has become a dear friend.”

The benefits of mentoring are clear for both mentees and mentors. Overall, 25% of a group who participated in a mentoring program received a salary increase in comparison to only 5% of those who did not. 87% of mentors and mentees feel empowered and confident in their careers, are respectively 6 and 5 times more likely to be promoted, and have significantly higher retention rates. This means mentoring is vital to ensuring women obtain director and managerial positions. Mentoring also improves workplace culture and increases professional diversity. A study at Cornell University found that mentoring programs also increased representation within a company by up to 28% and improved retention rates of people of colour and female employees by up to 38%.

Female mentorship is especially important for professional success in marketing because it is predominately a feminine industry. Women make up 60% of the marketing workforce in North America. That gender split has only recently started to reflect in higher level positions. Only 47% senior roles in 2019 were held by women. That grew in 2021, when 53% of director-level positions and 59% of manager-level positions were held by women. That is far better than the 37% average over all industries, where female mentoring is only more vital. Racial diversity, however, is still lagging in marketing. Only 13% of Chief Marketing Officers having racially diverse backgrounds. Mentoring is vital to continue improving both numbers, female mentoring especially. Overall, women in senior positions are far more likely than senior-level men to mentor women of colour.

After two years of the COVID pandemic, mentoring for women has only become more essential. Women disproportionately suffered the pandemic’s damages to the workplace. Their jobs were 1.8 times more vulnerable than men’s. Mounting pressures from the pandemic severely slowed and stalled women’s careers. Due to the increased time dedicated to childcare and household responsibilities, women were far more likely to downshift their careers or consider leaving their jobs entirely. In September of 2020, the number of women who left their jobs was four times greater than men

To improve and repair this damage, workplaces will need to be increasingly flexible, and employees must receive the necessary supports. Part of that support will be mentors that help their mentees manage their workloads, deal with burnout, and handle work-life balances. Only female mentors will understand how certain pressures affect other female professionals.

How to Find a Mentor

So female mentorship is important for professional success, but how do you find one? It’s best to get a mentor who has reached some of the career milestones you have set for yourself. You also don’t need to restrict yourself to one. Multiple perspectives can help you make more informed decisions. However, you’ll also need to find these mentors. There are a few places you can look for one. One option is mentoring programs. Some larger organizations provide mentoring programs, where you can receive mentorship and sponsoring support from a senior-level staff member within the company’s structure. You can also ask your manager or director for recommendations of suitable mentors they may know. 

Mentors also don’t need to be your seniors in the industry. Mentorship relationships can also be made among your colleagues who may have no or only a little more experience than you. These mentors lack the insight of one with more experience. However, they still act as a valuable sounding board for ideas or concerns. They are no less capable of providing professional guidance, perspective, and feedback. The greater equality in the relationship will also allow you to be a mentor them in return. Deanna cherishes her own cross-mentoring relationships, “The best feeling is when I can give-back and help her [Hollie] in-turn.”

If your workplace doesn’t offer mentoring programs or you can’t find a suitable mentor through your workplace, networking is a great option. Professional networking events can provide valuable opportunities to meet potential mentors in your industry. Digital networks can also help you find potential mentors such as alumni networks or LinkedIn connections. There are also networking services that provide mentoring opportunities for a fee. Monday Girl is a networking platform dedicated to connecting women with mentoring opportunities that suit their own professional goals. 

Becoming a Mentor

Mentoring also benefits mentors. So, how do you start? The same avenues we mentioned for finding a mentor also work for becoming one. You can offer yourself as a mentor in mentoring programs possibly offered by your company or to various networking services and platforms. You can also provide mentoring to those you oversee in your workplace. Your familiarity with their work gives you an advantage for how to best support their professional development. 

Mentoring relationships also don’t have to be rigid or official. Deanna’s own mentoring relationships have been what she calls “moment-mentors.” While not official mentors, they all provided her with the same professional insight and comradery as more formal mentorships.

Denna’s also been an eager “moment-mentor” herself, “I’ve been happy to share my well-rounded knowledge with female solopreneurs. Anything from proper start-up processes, do they need an HST number, what computer should they buy, what platforms should they market on, etc.” As a result, she’s also currently developing Rosewood Academy, an online course “with the specific goal of mentoring Female Solopreneurs.” Look for that in the future.

Final Comments

Mentorship is vital for supporting female professionals and ensuring women enjoy professional success, reaching and continuing to hold management- and executive-level positions. The recent pandemic has only placed additional pressures and barriers on female professionals. As a result, female mentors are crucial to building professional environments that welcome and encourage women to (again) pursue their careers. It isn’t the professional expertise that Deanna believes was most important in her mentoring, “The most valuable thing these “moment-mentors” have ever brought to my life was a feeling of belonging: knowing that, while my path is unique, it’s a collection of experiences that others have gone through before me.” 

Deanna reflects on mentorship