On June 7, 2021, Apple announced an update to the privacy features Apple users can enable within iOS 15 and Mac OS Monterey. Released on Monday, October 25, these operating systems include a new setting for Apple’s default Mail app within their operating systems: Mail Privacy Protection.
Mail Privacy Protection is a setting within Apple operating systems that will affect Apple’s default, and popular, Mail app. Via Mail Privacy Protection, Apple is providing their users with the ability to hide actions taken within their Mail app, as well as the geographical locations those actions have taken place within, from third parties such as Mad Mimi.
Per Apple’s release, “In the Mail app, Mail Privacy Protection stops senders from using invisible pixels to collect information about the user. The new feature helps users prevent senders from knowing when they open an email, and masks their IP address so it can’t be linked to other online activity or used to determine their location.”
This will directly affect your Mad Mimi mailings. Like most email service providers, Mad Mimi relies on an “invisible pixel” for tracking who opens your Mad Mimi promotions and when that occurs. For many years, email marketers (like you) have relied heavily upon View stats to determine how successful a mailing was; email service providers (like Mad Mimi) have relied upon View stats to determine sender, domain, and IP health.
In providing their users with more control over their privacy, Apple is effectively forcing a major alteration on how the email marketing industry has operated up until now.
HOW DOES THIS AFFECT MY MAD MIMI MAILINGS?
First, it’s important to note that your Mad Mimi emails will continue to be received by recipients who utilize Apple’s Mail Privacy Protection within their operating systems, and you will still be able to track engagement with Apple users (as well as all of your contacts) via their clicks within your emails.
However, now that Apple is offering the ability to block third parties from using invisible pixels to collect information on emails sent to Apple users, View stats within Mad Mimi may no longer be reliably accurate. In fact, you will likely see inflated View stats, as Apple Mail Privacy Protection will simply activate Mad Mimi tracking beacons whether or not the individual recipients are actually opening and viewing your emails.
HOW DOES THIS AFFECT MY MAD MIMI ACCOUNT FEATURES?
The Stats reporting feature will be the most obviously affected feature within Mad Mimi. Since View stats may no longer be reliably accurate, they can no longer be relied upon to indicate the success of a mailing, or your sender health.
Further, View/Non-view reports generated by our support team may no longer be accurate due to the inflated view rates.
Additionally, the Second Send feature relies on View stats in order to re-send a promotion to the contacts who did not view the initial send of a given promotion. Since View stats may no longer be reliably accurate, the list of non-views a Second Send is sent to may also no longer be reliably accurate.
Finally, our Drip Campaign add-on has in the past sent drips at the time you specify within the recipient’s time zone. However, we may not be able to track what timezone Apple users are opening their emails within any longer. Now Drip campaigns may simply send at the time you specify in your time zone.
WHAT DO YOU MEAN BY “APPLE USERS?” DO YOU MEAN PEOPLE WHO HAVE ICLOUD, MAC, OR ME.COM EMAIL ADDRESSES?
By “Apple user,” we are referring to anyone who opens their emails on an iPhone or an Apple computer, regardless of the domain the email is hosted by. This may include anyone with an Apple domain address, however, this can also include anyone using Gmail, Hotmail, AOL, Yahoo, Outlook, etc. domain addresses via Apple’s Mail app.
DOES THIS SETTING AFFECT APPLE USERS WHO ARE UTILIZING A DIFFERENT MAIL APP TO OPEN THEIR EMAILS ON THEIR APPLE PRODUCTS?
No. This setting will be specific to Apple’s Mail app. So if an Apple user is utilizing a different email app to open their emails on an Apple product, this setting will not affect them.
DO YOU HAVE A WAY TO IDENTIFY MY RECIPIENTS WHO ARE UTILIZING APPLE MAIL PRIVACY PROTECTION?
Unfortunately, we have no way to report that information to you. However, we do have some ideas about how to survey your current audience to find out who among them utilizes Apple’s Mail app in case you want to make decisions about how you’ll proceed with your mailing practices going forward.
- You can send an email to your audience asking them whether or not they utilize Apple’s Mail app, and utilize our Link to List add-on to create a list of people who utilize it.
- You can send an email to your audience asking them whether or not they utilize Apple’s Mail app, and utilize a Survey Monkey survey via our Survey Monkey add-on to determine who utilizes it.
- You can send an email to your audience asking them whether or not they utilize Apple’s Mail app, and utilize a Mad Mimi webform to determine who utilizes it.
HOW WILL I DETERMINE THE SUCCESS OF MY MAILINGS IF VIEW STATS MAY NO LONGER BE RELIABLY ACCURATE?
This change from Apple is bound to alter the way that email marketing operates. However, it’s still too early to say just how much things will change, or even provide a full list of expectations for how things will change.
In the immediate, however, we all need to step back from a reliance on View stats to determine success. Since View stats may no longer be accurate, a reliance on them may only provide you with inaccurate outcomes.
Instead, focus more so on…
- your “Engagement” stats.
- your “Click Performance” reports.
- your “Bounced” stats; maintaining rates no higher than ~5%.
- your “Unsubscribed” stats; maintaining rates no higher than 0.30%.
- your “Marked as Spam” stats; maintaining rates no higher than 0.10%.
I REGULARLY ASK YOUR SUPPORT TEAM TO CREATE VIEWS/NON-VIEWS LISTS FOR ME TO MAINTAIN MY AUDIENCE? WHAT DO I DO NOW?
Unfortunately, those view/non-view lists may no longer be accurate. Instead of focusing on your View stats, focus more so on your Engagement stats. We can also make up Engaged and/or Non-engaged lists for you, which will be based upon the number of contacts who have clicked a link within your emails.
If you’re concerned that you are regularly mailing a list and not seeing the results of it, ask our Support team about sending a reconfirmation email to your audience and we can help you with that.
IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE I NEED TO KNOW?
Possibly! At this point, it’s hard to say. The industry is still waiting to see how this all unfolds. Rest assured that our team will continue to investigate how these changes are affecting Mad Mimi users, and we will update this help document with more information as needed.
WHAT IF I HAVE MORE QUESTIONS RIGHT NOW?
Just email our amazing Support team at firstname.lastname@example.org!