Guest Blog: UA Adaptation in the post-IDFA world (By Hagop Hagopian)

July 7, 2021

It’s been almost two months since Apple enforced the IDFA depreciation and the ATT framework through iOS 14.5. Advertisers are freaking out about the loss of attribution data for their paid media investments. Basically, all iOS numbers are looking bad and every paid acquisition channel is reporting less install and post install numbers. In some cases there are more than 50% loss in post install reports. The new reality with all of its attribution data loss does not look surprising to us. Moreover, we have already found a solution that we’re pleased to share with you.

How to deal with attribution data loss and measure success?  

What’s interesting about the data that we are seeing is that most of the numbers are being attributed to organic. By looking at Organics and Paid ratio pre and post iOS14.5, we can clearly see that the paid numbers are constantly declining and organic numbers are rising. So, if you are an app owner, you shouldn’t freak out about it as you are still hitting the numbers the same way you used to. However, your marketing team that manages paid channels might be concerned because of not knowing which channels or campaigns are driving the results. 

What can you do to measure your success?

There are a couple of ways marketers are considering to identify success:

  1. Rely on historical data. For example, you know that Facebook or certain geos were constantly hitting your numbers. Therefore, unless you’ve made major changes in your app that caused a complete change of economy, it is fair to make the assumption that they continue to do so.
  2. Use incrementality to measure your paid media success. We know that we haven’t completely lost the data from iOS14.5+ because there’s still a rise in organic numbers. It is important to analyze which part of the UA activity is causing the rise, and this is where incrementality comes into play. Through incrementality measurements you will be able to tell what percentage of the increase of your organic numbers are driven by specific UA campaigns that you’ve launched.


Measuring KPIs (Key Performance Indicators)

It’s appropriate to aggregate both app events and marketing data at channel and country level and then measure the KPIs that each channel is driving. This way you don’t have to rely on last touch attribution or IDFA to measure the KPIs. All you have to do is relate the paid activities to organic numbers. Once you have the KPIs you will be able to tell which campaign, channel or geo is working better.

How to start today?

It would require a heavy investment in the data science team to analyze these numbers at a very granular level.  Therefore, be ready to invest a lot of time and resources to get there. However, there are some companies who are already measuring incrementality for post-IDFA deprecation and are able to split results within 24 hours. One of those companies is MetricWorks. We at Appvertiser have collaborated with them to help measure the  iOS14.5 numbers for one of our clients. With help from MetricWorks, we have been able to identify the underperforming and overperforming campaigns without relying on SKAD reports. Moreover, the client was able to see the results in a short period of time. Through MetricWorks, our client was able to continue to drive their UA investments without facing any issues and measure the success of their campaigns through the incrementality approach embedded in Metric Works Polaris. It is clear to us that this new privacy wave is here to stay and we expect Google to follow a similar path with Android phones. We at Appvertiser do believe that this is the future when it comes to UA measurement. Last touch attribution will be forever gone. For any marketing team out there, we highly recommend that you invest in your data science team and give them the needed support whether it means building it in-house or contracting top product vendors such as MetricWorks.

Appvertiser is a growth marketing agency for app developers and ecommerce companies. We have over ten years of experience in growth marketing and user acquisition, specializing in paid channels management, setting marketing strategies, and taking a data-driven approach to drive and unlock growth.

You can reach us at We look forward to your questions.


Hagop Hagopian
CEO & Founder of Appvertiser


Got questions for MetricWorks? We have answers.

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