Adjusting Your Marketing Strategy For iOS 15

Apple’s iOS 15 email privacy updates are revolutionizing how email marketers pull data. Data allows us to figure out what’s working and what’s not. With the new updates, email open rates will be impacted in a big way. We talked about what this iOS email privacy update is, but how can you adjust Your Email Marketing Strategy to fit this new change?


With the unreliability of open rates, it’s time to revaluate which email marketing metrics you focus on. Opens and clicks no longer hold the power they once did. Email clicks hold more weight than they used to. Consider focusing on the conversion rate, list growth rate, overall ROI, click rate, and the number of emails being forwarded and shared.

  1. Conversion rate: the number of conversions (a specific action such as sales) divided by the total number of visitors
  2. List growth rate: the rate at which you’re gaining new subscribers versus contacts unsubscribing
  3. Overall ROI: the amount of money earned for every dollar invested in email marketing
  4. Click rate: the percentage of recipients who click a link in your email
  5. Forwarding/sharing: how often recipients forward or share an email, expanding campaign reach

At the end of the day, the most integral part of strategy is relying on metrics that drive your central business goals. Alignment is key.


It’s time to revamp the triggers in your automated email series. Stray away from triggers related to open rates. Set triggers around whether someone clicks a certain link, time-focused triggers, date-focused triggers, and triggers driven by ecommerce, perhaps someone leaves a full cart at checkout.


With MPP, you don’t know how many people are opening your emails. But, it’s critical that your emails are opened! Now is as good a time as ever to re-focus on engaging email subscribers.

Email subject lines are the first thing a consumer reads when deciding to open an email or click delete. Put yourself in the shoes of your audience. If you were reading the email, what would make you click? 

Consider the contact sender’s name in the from section of your newsletters. This needs to be a name that consumers know and trust. Following subject lines, preheaders (words that show in an email preview) are an important email component. Preheaders are a great location for a call to action.


Since we’re shifting from email open rates to click rates for measuring engagement, it’s important to create content that makes consumers click. As a general rule of thumb, don’t include your most valuable content in an email. Leave readers with a curiosity gap to click through to your website.


To get the most out of your emails, add interactive elements to engage subscribers. Polls and surveys invite your consumer to contribute to the conversation.

In the ever-evolving digital landscape, know that there will be more changes to come. Being able to pivot and adapt your strategy over time is one the strongest tool in your email marketing toolkit.  


What the Apple iOS Email Privacy Update Means For Your Business

Apple’s iOS 15 email privacy updates are revolutionizing how email marketers pull data. Data allows us to figure out what’s working and what’s not. With the new updates, email open rates will be impacted in a big way.

There’s no need to panic, but it’s important to understand how the new update will influence your email marketing strategy. Apple’s privacy updates apply to their infamous Mail app and impact data regardless of your preferred email marketing platform. Open rates and location data are the main data sources affected.

Email Privacy Protection

As Apple cracks down on its Mail Privacy Protection (MPP) options, consumers have the choice of withholding whether they do or don’t open their emails (open rates). For email marketers, this means we have less data to analyze the habits of our audience.

Announced in June 2021, Apple upgraded their privacy settings with the release of iOS 15, making it easier for iPhone users to regulate the use of their personal data. MPP protects data from third parties and hides IP addresses, preventing the linkage of online activity to determine a user’s location. This feature is active on Apple’s Mail app for the iPhone, iPad, Apple watch, and Mac computers, after users have opted in.

Previously, data was sent over from an email immediately when opened by the recipient. The data detailed whether the email was opened, on what device, and often the recipient’s location. The key takeaway, email open rates are no longer a reliable email performance metric.

Why It’s Important

Apple Mail is the default mail application for all Apple devices and accounts for 52% of all email opens, according to Litmus. Apple rolled out MPP for all Apple Mail users on September 20, 2021. Nine times out of 10, consumers will opt to protect their privacy.

Email features you may have relied on previously could be impacted due to inaccurate email open data. One example entails auto-sending a follow-up email to a recipient who didn’t open your initial email.

If 52% of your email list uses Apple Mail, it’s projected that 96% of them will elect to employ the MPP feature. Thus, half of your current email subscribers will skew email open rate data, making this an utterly unreliable metric. You can expect to see your open rates increase.

How Your Email Marketing Strategy Is Affected

Regardless of your preferred email platform, MPP will impact the email marketing industry as a whole. You can expect your email open rates to increase as a result of Apple automatically marking emails as opened on behalf of their users. But, open rates are no longer dependable as a key performance metric.

A click-to-open rate (CTOR) contrasts the number of unique clicks to unique opens, indicating an email’s effectiveness and ability to get consumers to click. CTOR is a result of email opens, so MPP will cause your CTOR rates to drop drastically. But, MPP won’t impact total clicks.

Previously, audience engagement was determined by how often recipients opened your emails. But, you’re likely to see an abnormally large surge of audience members with high engagement.

Open rates play a part in the segmentation of an email list, ranking subscribers from maximum to least engagement, again based on how often subscribers open emails. Rather than basing email segmentation off how often contacts open your emails, base it off of how often subscribers click links within your emails.

Some email platforms, HubSpot included, can set up an automated email series, which will trigger depending on whether or not a user opened an earlier email. Since Apple Mail records an artificial open rate, you may consider using an email click as a trigger in an automated email series.

Traditionally, A/B subject line testing functions on open rates when two versions of the same email are deployed to a small section of your contact list, complete with two differing subject lines. The subject line with the higher open rate is regarded as more effective, but it’s now unreliable with Apple’s MPP update. Consider basing A/B testing around click rates.

As privacy regulations increase, marketers will have less access to consumers’ personal data and habits. With artificial open rates, we won’t know the time an email was opened, the device an email was opened on, and the geographical location in which the email was opened.

Despite Apple’s MPP update, email continues to have the highest ROI, generating $42 for every $1 spent, out of all marketing channels. At the end of the day, the overarching goal of email marketing is to drive sales and increase the bottom line while targeting new customers and sustaining engagement with your current email list.



Greenland Connection From The Post and Courier

(Charleston, S.C.) The Post and Courier has recently published a special report detailing how the melting ice in Greenland is effecting the South Carolina Lowcountry, from rising seas to heavier rains. Projects Reporter Tony Bartelme and Photojournalist Lauren Petracca traveled to Greenland to research and cover this story as a part of the newspapers deep dive into climate issues facing the state.

Bartelme and Petracca worked with Josh Willis, a climate scientist with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory and head of the Oceans Melting Greenland project. Willis has been researching the oceans effect on the ice in Greenland for the past six years, and through this research has discovered that glaciers are even more threatened than once previously thought. Approximately 280 Billion tons of the massive ice sheet in Greenland melts into the ocean every year and about 15% of Charleston’s rising sea level can be connected to this melting ice.

Bartelme, who also reported on The Post and Courier’s Rising Waters, an in-depth series on the increased flooding in the Charleston area said, “We explored one of the most important stories that hardly anyone is talking about – how melting ice in Greenland affects the gravitational pull on oceans. This has a direct effect on sea levels in South Carolina’s Lowcountry, where every inch of sea rise matters.”

Executive Editor of The Post and Courier, Autumn Phillips added, “The Greenland Connection is a huge, creative swing to show how something happening half a globe away is changing things for us. The storytelling by Bartelme and the visuals by Petracca will capture your imagination – transporting readers while also making them think.”

The Greenland Connection was made possible by generous support from the Pulitzer Center, the Fund for Investigative Journalism and The Post and Courier Public Service and Investigative Reporting Fund. The story was made available online to subscribers on Sept. 17, 2021, and will be available in print on Sept. 19, 2021. The story is available online here.

The Post and Courier is a privately held, family-owned media company headquartered in Charleston, S.C. In keeping with its proud history, The Post and Courier is dedicated to serving its customers, employees, and communities with unconditional integrity, and promises to deliver the highest standards of service and impactful, solutions-based journalism


Digital Readiness

Digital Readiness: What does it mean and why is it important?

Technology is constantly changing and advancing. How many times a year do you see a commercial for the next generation of the iPhone? As technolo­gy progresses, the adop­tion of new technologies is uneven. For example, in a world of iPhone and androids, the flip phone still exists. For an individual to adapt to new technology they must learn how to use it and trust it. This is an example of digital readiness. Are people pre­pared to adapt to changes in technology and how will that adaption happen?

In the media world, the segment we are fo­cused on for digital readiness is our print sub­scribers. Print subscribers are some of our most habitual readers. Imagine thousands of people across our commu­nity spending their mornings reading the paper front to back with a cup of coffee. The ques­tion is, how many of those readers follow our news throughout the day with our digi­tal platforms? Did you know that our print subscriptions include access to our web­site, E-Paper, and mobile app? Our goal is to bridge the gap of print only readers and digital readers by helping our print readers become “digital ready.”

The first thing to consider for print subscrib­er digital readiness is to make sure this group of people are comfortable with navigating the digital space. The recommended place to start is introducing the group to our E-Paper. The E-Paper is a digital replica of the printed product and an effective tool for digital read­iness. We offer classes and webinars to teach people how to log-in and activate their digital subscriptions to use the E-Paper. The second thing to consider is building trust with our print subscribers to engage with our digital. Print readers place emphasis on the feeling of com­pletion. When you read the paper front to back, you are up to speed on all you need to know in news for the day. To gain trust with our readers digitally, we can show how our digital products can give that feeling of completion, and addi­tionally keep them up to date through­out the day.

Digital readiness is important be­cause we can focus on helping our print readers maximize their subscriptions and access all the content available to them. We can also learn more about those readers based on their digital habits, and create a better experience for them as a whole.


****This article was written by Associate Director of Audience Growth, Claire Linney******

Claire Linney Named Associate Director of Audience Growth and Acquisition

As The Post and Courier grows digital subscribers, we continue to nurture our print roots. Leading the charge is former Emerging Media Manager Claire Linney, who has a new title: Associate Director of Audience Growth and Acquisition.

Claire Linney is no stranger to The Post and Courier, and she knows the audience well. Being with the company for eight years, in three different roles that share a common goal of how to grow and reach a broader audience, Claire holds the well-rounded experience to take on this next chapter.

Starting my career in the field is invaluable,” Claire explains.“Hearing direct feedback from clients and being accountable for their success helped me understand and trust our products through a unique lens. In this role, I will have the opportunity to see our newspaper from the viewpoint of our readers and potential readers. Although the needs analysis and campaigns will be different, I will still use many of the same skill sets I built as a sales rep and manager.”

From being a digital sales specialist to a sales representative to sales manager, Claire has attained key knowledge of the importance that each aspect plays in overall growth and how to utilize that knowledge to excel. She tells us that the thing she is most looking forward to in this new role is connecting her knowledge to new creative collaborations. 

I am excited to collaborate with different teams and experiment with ideas around subscription acquisition, retention, and digital readiness. Coming from an advertising background, I love tracking data and getting creative with promotions.” 

With her focus turning to grow home delivery across the tri-county area, her past hands-on experience and successful campaigns will only strengthen The Post and Courier’s overall goals. “With the right focus, our growing market presents a big opportunity for acquisition. Lots of new doorsteps for a daily paper!” Claire excitingly tells us. 

From there, the print expansion will bleed into digital readiness and the bright future for The Post and Courier. Claire has only been in the associate director role for a few weeks and already has goals in mind. When asked where she sees The Post and Courier in the next year, she tells us: “In the next year, I would love to see our promotions and acquisition experimenting lead to a healthy growth track for print subscriptions. For myself, knowing that our efforts are leading to a more knowledgeable and balanced community is rewarding.