SKAdNetwork, Facebook, and Singular: How we’re supporting iOS attribution via Facebook

By Susan Kuo December 16, 2020

Today we’re announcing more details around how Singular will measure and attribute iOS 14 app installs via Facebook.

There has been a tremendous amount of change in iOS attribution and post-install engagement measurement for mobile app publishers and marketers. The good news is that deterministic attribution will still be possible. Mobile performance marketing and mobile user acquisition is not going anywhere. And we’re happy to see that Facebook is taking a leadership role in ensuring that mobile ad performance will be impacted as little as possible.

There’s a lot to share here, but in brief:

  • Facebook is working hard to support SKAdNetwork and iOS 14
  • Advertisers can use the Singular SDK to manage conversion goals and methodologies and maintain full compatibility with Facebook; they do not need to add the Facebook SDK
  • Facebook strongly recommends advertisers use an MMP for SKAdNetwork attribution management to ensure conversion methodology consistency across partners
  • Singular is working closely with Facebook to ensure complete integration and interoperability
  • Together, we’ve built a framework that will allow advertisers to measure app installs and post-install events uniformly across mobile platforms
  • Singular has tested our SKAdNetwork infrastructure with Facebook and will continue to work with Facebook toward full readiness

Where Facebook and Singular are now

Facebook and Singular have been working closely together to solve attribution and conversion management on iOS 14. Facebook released initial guidance on October 29, and Singular was the first mobile measurement partner to announce support for SKAdNetwork.

Facebook now supports Singular’s SKAdNetwork solution, allowing for advertisers to continue to use the Singular SDK to measure and optimize towards your Facebook campaigns with SKAdNetwork. One such piece to the integration allows Facebook to retrieve your configured Singular conversion model into your Facebook Ads account, highlighting the critical role MMPs play in SKAdNetwork.

There is more work to be done. As Facebook says, while much has been accomplished, this is still a work in progress. It will be completed very soon, and both Facebook and we anticipate being ready by the time that Apple fully implements iOS 14’s new attribution policies.

SKAdNetwork and MMPs

There’s been a lot of talk about the role of mobile measurement partners in an SKAdNetwork world.

We’ve been very clear that Singular’s iOS 14 attribution solution makes SKAdNetwork simple and scalable, providing superior analytics, centralized data, customized conversions, and full privacy compliance. Importantly, Singular will also protect advertisers against new sources of fraud that SKAdNetwork is particularly vulnerable to.

What we’re hearing from Facebook is that aligning iOS 14 measurement and analytics via an MMP is Facebook’s preferred model and the best option for advertisers. Platforms that implement SKAdNetwork but do not integrate with MMPs are putting advertisers at risk of incompatible data, disrupted cross-platform measurement, and conversion methodology collisions.

That’s critically important for Singular to solve for our customers.

Equally as important, we need to note that Singular isn’t just your best option for mobile attribution. Thanks to our long history in cost aggregation and unification of marketing analytics, we collect and combine both your campaign data and your attribution data, enabling much more accurate ROAS and cohort reporting and much richer, more granular, and reliable measurement. That holistic and integrated approach guarantees you get the smartest insights for growth and the most accurate data, and enables creative optimization and more despite iOS 14 and SKAdNetwork’s limitations.

Standardization across ad partners

It’s clear that Facebook considers SKAdNetwork incredibly important and something that the entire industry needs to adopt so that mobile app publishers can use common conversion models and methodologies across all of their ad partners. Uniformity of measurement methodology using SKAdNetwork conversion goals will enable publishers to use either Facebook’s SDK or Singular’s SDK for marketing optimization and measurement.

In addition, when you’re standardizing conversion models, it’s simpler to compare and contrast performance and goal achievement.

Singular reporting for Facebook SKAdNetwork attributions

While Facebook is a major platform for mobile user acquisition professionals, Facebook understands that advertisers with scale will be using multiple partners. As such, iOS 14 attributions credited to Facebook will be visible, just like today, in Singular’s dashboards and dataflows alongside all your other data.

Where we go from here

As I’ve already mentioned, there is still some work to be done. I think it’s safe to say we’re basically ready, and Facebook is very close, although more testing is ongoing. While Singular has announced many initial partners for our iOS 14 SKAdNetwork solution, Singular SKAN, and now we’re able to announce what we’ve been working on with Facebook, the full integration is not completely ready for prime time just yet.

There are incredible opportunities to innovate on this foundation, including some incredible new tools Singular is working on for predictive LTV.

Singular clients should talk to their customer success contacts about testing options and next steps.

If you’re not already a Singular client, get in touch with us now to get an SKAdNetwork walk through, demo, and access to testing code and our SDK.

Marketers and ad partners: what to expect in early 2021
We expect Apple to switch SKAdNetwork completely on fairly soon in the year. In fact, we wouldn’t be surprised if it happens in January. We’re working hard — and so is Facebook — to ensure that advertisers don’t see disruptions in the campaigns, and that their campaigns are as successful as possible.

There are now even more partners integrated with Singular’s SKAdNetwork solution, including:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Snap
  • TikTok
  • ironSource
  • Liftoff
  • Tapjoy
  • Vungle
  • And … many more

Look for additional information on this blog or from your customer success team over the next few months.

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