Marketing & Advertising

Meta's Move to Consent-Based Ads in the EU Puts Trust in the Spotlight

Advertisers must adapt to a changing landscape and prioritize trust in the wake of Meta's shift to consent-based advertising in Europe.

SMEBROctober 24, 15:05
Meta's Move to Consent-Based Ads in the EU Puts Trust in the Spotlight

Meta, the parent company of Facebook and Instagram, has announced its intention to adopt a consent-based advertising model in Europe, marking a significant shift in the advertising industry. Previously, Meta relied on "legitimate interests" as the basis for targeted ads, but now it aims to seek explicit consent from EU users before displaying personalized ads.

This change comes in response to regulatory rulings that have questioned the legality of Meta's data processing practices. Regulatory bodies, including Ireland's Data Protection Commissioner, have challenged Meta's use of user data for ad targeting without obtaining explicit consent, resulting in substantial fines. To address these concerns, Meta has decided to adjust its approach and make user consent a requirement for processing certain data.

For advertisers, this shift highlights the need to move away from data-centric strategies and focus on building trust with consumers. With a reduced reliance on third-party targeting, advertisers must prioritize first-party data and authentic brand communication. This adjustment underscores the importance of traditional marketing disciplines such as segmentation, targeting, positioning, and aligning marketing efforts with evolving user privacy preferences.

Meta's move is just one aspect of a broader transformation in the digital advertising ecosystem. Apple's introduction of the App Tracking Transparency (ATT) feature, which allows users to opt in or out of app tracking, has already reshaped access to user data for advertisers. Meta's shift adds another layer of complexity to the evolving landscape.

As the industry rapidly changes, marketers must be adaptable and creative in their strategies while adhering to regulations. Privacy policies play a crucial role in giving users control over their online experience and personal data. With growing concerns about online privacy and security, many users are likely to opt out of targeted ads, reflecting their desire for more control over their online privacy.

In this evolving landscape, advertisers must prioritize building trust with consumers, respecting their privacy preferences, and finding innovative ways to engage with their target audience while maintaining compliance with regulations.