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The Apple SKAdNetwork is an attribution framework designed for mobile app install attribution on iOS 14. Apple itself controls the attribution post back in this framework and limits the data provided in the post back event. The most important aspect of this framework is that customers will not be able to tie the impression (auction ID) back to the original user who clicked on the ad and installed your app, which will limit an advertiser’s ability to optimize performance campaigns for iOS. Beeswax has adapted its reporting and attribution products to accommodate for these changes.

SKAdNetwork is only applicable if you are running mobile app install campaigns on iOS 14 and:

  • Is not applicable for iOS 13 or older
  • Is not applicable on Android
  • Is not applicable to re-engagement or retargeting campaigns on iOS 14.

In a traditional post back from a Mobile Measurement Provider (MMP), Beeswax receives the following information from the MMP:

  • Event ID (which is tied to an advertiser, campaign or line item within Buzz)
  • Auction ID of the impression/click that the conversion was attributed to
  • An arbitrary value for the conversion (e.g. product code, purchase value etc.)

This information allows Beeswax users to tie these conversions back to the attributed impression and therefore optimize toward conversions based on the fields of the attributed impression.

As part of the new SKAdNetwork measures from Apple, Beeswax receives less data on the attribution post back:

  1. SKAdNetwork Campaign ID: This is not the Buzz campaign ID but an ID between 1 and 100. It is up to Beeswax to generate these SKAdNetwork campaign IDs in a way that gives customers some usable information about the conversion. 
  2. Publisher App: The publisher’s app bundle that the ad was delivered to (e.g. NYTimes iOS App)
  3. 6 bit conversion value determined by the advertiser. The conversion value can be set upon the install and updated any number of times on a rolling 24 hour window. Each time the app updates the conversion value it further delays the postback to Beeswax. Beeswax will only receive the post back after the 24 hour timer has expired from the last conversion value update. 

* Beeswax will only receive conversion values if the number of conversions meets Apple's SKAdnetwork privacy thresholds. Apple has not released any details about what this threshold is, and many ad networks report that very few postbacks include them (Source: Branch).

SKAdNetwork Campaign IDs

What are they?

Apple limits Beeswax (and all advertising platforms) to 100 “SKAdNetwork Campaign IDs” per advertised app bundle. This 1-100 value is the most granular identifier available, and can be used to provide some means of tying a conversion back to a Beeswax line item or creative/line item combination.

How will they be implemented in Beeswax?

Customers will be able to decide on which level they would like to track SKAdNetwork conversions using the following options:

OptionSKAdNetwork Campaign ID GenerationDiscussion on Tradeoffs
Line ItemBeeswax generates an SKAdNetwork campaign ID just for the Line itemLess granular reporting, but will eat up SKAdNetwork Campaign IDs less aggressively. 
Line Item/Creative LevelBeeswax generates an SKAdNetwork for every Line Item/Creative comboUse to distinguish which creative receives attribution for the conversion. More granular reporting but will eat up SKAdNetwork Campaign IDs more aggressively. Customers with lots of creatives may want to consider fewer creatives or using the Line Item option. 

The above options will be set at the Line Item level, allowing you to set SKAdNetwork conversion tracking at the Line Item or Line Item/Creative combination for others. . These Line Items can reside under the same Campaign.

How to setup a SKAdNetwork Campaign in Beeswax

If you are intending to run and track mobile app install campaigns on iOS 14, follow the below steps to set up SKAdNetwork attribution in Beeswax.

Buzz Workflow

  1. Navigate to the Advertiser in question and set Enable SKAd Tracking field to YES on the Advertiser level:
    • Once set to YES, input the Advertiser App Bundle in the relevant field
      • NOTE: Once this has been set to YES, you will not be able to revert it back to NO - nor will you be able to change the Advertiser App Bundle on the Advertiser
    • Once set to YES, you will also not be able to set a different value for the Advertiser App Bundle for creatives beneath this Advertiser:
      • Once this field has been set, Beeswax will validate that all creatives under this Advertiser have the same Advertised App Bundle value set at Advertiser level. If any creatives do not match, you will not be able to toggle Enable SKAD Tracking to YES.

  2. Once Enabled at the Advertiser Level, all new Campaigns and Line Items created beneath this Advertiser will be enabled for SKAdNetwork Tracking. This can be disabled at either level before saving. Existing Campaigns or Line Items will not be changed in any way.
    • Once the field is set to YES and saved it cannot be changed. If originally set to NO, then the user can change it to YES later.
    • Customers can disable the flag at the Campaign Level before saving. Disabling it will turn off SKAdTracking for all Line Items beneath this campaign.
    • Customers can disable the flag at the Line Item level before saving, for example, if that Line is used for non-app environments.
      • Once the field is set to YES and saved, it cannot be changed. If originally set to NO, then the user can change it to YES later.

If Enable SKAd Tracking is set to YES on the line item, there will be an option to select a SKAd Assignment Level from the below two options:

  • Creative / Line Item Combination (Default) 
  • Line Item

The Target SKAd-Enabled Supply field is set to YES by default. This ensures that the line item will only buy inventory that is eligible for SKAdNetwork attribution by Beeswax.

SKAdNetwork Campaign ID Allocation

A single advertised App Bundle can have up to 20 SKAdNetwork IDs per advertised app per buzz key. However, if you are a direct advertiser and owner of the app in question, you may reserve additional SKAdNetwork IDs--please contact your Beeswax CSM to be enabled for more SKAdNetworkIDs should it be necessary. 

How SKAdNetwork Campaign IDs Get “Released”

With this limit of 20 SKAdNetwork Campaign IDs, Beeswax has a mechanism to “release” a SKAdNetwork Campaign ID to be reused later. An SKAdNetwork Campaign ID is just an ID used for attribution purposes, and once the attribution window is closed our system can release the SKAdNetwork Campaign ID to be used by another Line Item or Line Item/Creative. 

  • Beeswax will automatically “release” a SKAdNetwork Campaign ID to be re-used 35 days after the Line Item is set to INACTIVE
    • The Line Item must be set INACTIVE for the 35 day clock to start
  • Please contact Beeswax support if you unintentionally use an SKAdNetwork Campaign ID so that it can be manually “released.”

How can I report on SKAdNetwork attributed conversions?

You can report on SKAdNetwork conversions through the following feeds:

SKAdNetwork Conversions in Aggregated Reporting

Aggregated ReportDiscussionFields
Conversion ReportSKAdNetwork conversions will appear in the Conversion Report. They can be identified and filtered out by using either the existing “Attribution Method” or “Conversion Type” dimension which will now contain “SKADNETWORK” as a potential value.
  • Conversion Hour (Approximate)
  • Advertiser ID
  • Account ID
  • Line Item ID
  • Beeswax Campaign ID
  • Creative ID
  • App Bundle
  • Attribution Method
  • Conversion Type
  • Conversion Count
  • Conversion Value

NOTE: The SKAdNetwork Campaign ID will not be exposed in reporting
Performance ReportSKAdNetwork conversions will NOT appear in the Performance report since there is no impression to tie the conversion back toN/A

SKAdNetwork Conversions in Raw Logs

SKAdNetwork Conversions will only appear in Attributed Conversion Logs. They will not appear in standard Conversion Logs. This is because Beeswax needs to apply some manual attribution workflows in order to attribute the SKAdNetwork Campaign ID to the correct Buzz Key/Line Item/Creative ID combination.

Conversion Logs would typically include all Conversions, with Attributed Conversions only being a subset of this total number. Now, SKAdNetwork conversions are mutually exclusive from Conversion Logs (the Venn diagram below illustrates this). The red circle is Conversion Logs and the blue circle is Attributed Conversion logs:

Conversions outside of the SKAdNetwork methodology will be unaffected by these changes.

ID Present Reporting

To help in understanding the scale of the reduction of presence of IDFAs, we have added a new grouping dimension called “ID Present” which will be present on the following Report Types:

  • Performance
  • Domain
  • App
  • Inventory
  • Geo
  • Platform
  • Segment

This field has 3 possible values:

  • 1 = ID Present
  • 0 = No ID Present
  • -1 = Unknown (referring to records which were created prior to the implementation of this feature)

This new feature allows users to filter or pivot data in Report Builder using ‘ID Present’ as a dimension.

How to Setup MMP SKAD Forwarding

Setting up MMP Forwarding is done on the Advertiser level. There is currently no way to configure SKAD forwarding on a campaign or line item basis. When enabled, all the SKAD Conversions for the given Advertiser will be forwarded to the desired MMP. If you do not see this option available on the Advertiser, please reach out to your Customer Success Manager. 

If an Advertiser has "Enable SKAD Tracking" toggled on, you will be able to select an Eligible MMP for SKAD Forwarding from the dropdown:

Beeswax currently supports AppsFlyer and Singular as MMP partners. You can opt to forward to one of these MMPs or choose “None”. As more MMPs are added in the future, they will appear here. Note that only one MMP can be selected per Advertiser, but this field can be changed after it is initially set. This setting is also changeable via the API.


Q: I want to test SKAdNetwork now--do I need to change anything with my MMP set up including the click urls they define in Buzz?
A: No, you do not need to change anything with your MMP setup. Beeswax is working closely with MMPs to understand and potentially support their additional SKAdNetwork offerings.

Q: How do MMPs work in SKAdNetwork?
A: Each MMP has a slightly different proposal for how to work with SKAdTracking. Beeswax is working with all major MMPs to understand how things may change.

Q: Do SSPs need to support SKAdNetwork?
A: Yes, SSPs are required to support SKAdNetwork in order for installs to track properly in programmatic. We expect all mobile app exchanges to support it, including Google Ad Exchange.

Q: This 20 SkAdNetwork Campaign ID limit seems very limiting, is there any way around it?
A: Apple limits the number of SKAdNetwork Campaign IDs available per buying platform. If you are a direct advertiser and owner of the app in question, you may reserve additional SKAdNetwork IDs--please contact your Beeswax CSM to be enabled for more SKAdNetworkIDs should it be necessary.

Q: What will mobile app install advertisers be able to optimize towards on iOS 14 once Apple releases these changes?
A: This may vary greatly between advertisers, who will likely take different approaches. You may choose to revert back to optimizing towards clicks where you can still get the rich auction information to optimize towards. You may also choose to use the information you receive from Apple on iOS 14 to optimize:

  • The app publisher bundle ID
  • If you are using Line Item / Creative level, then in addition to the app publisher bundle ID, you will know what combination of targeting on the Line Item and which creative led to the conversion.

Q: Can SKAdNetwork Campaign IDs be reused?
A: Yes. The same SKAdNetwork Campaign ID for the same advertised app bundle can be reused in the future. Apple has a 30 day lookback window for all postback installs, so any SKAdNetwork Campaign ID used should not be re-used until at least 30 days has passed since it has served impressions. Otherwise there is risk for misattribution. Beeswax will automatically “expire” an SKAdNetwork Campaign ID in use 35 days after the line item is made inactive.

Q: Can we force an expiration of SKAdNetwork Campaign IDs?
A: Yes, if you make a mistake and want Beeswax to manually expire a SKAdNetwork Campaign ID, please reach out to Beeswax Support with the Beeswax Campaign ID and/or Line Item ID in question.

Q: What happens if we go over our SKAdNetwork Campaign ID limit?
A: Buzz enforces the limit and will prevent additional Lines or Creative-Line Associations from being made active.

Q: Can we manually set SKAdNetwork Campaign IDs to mean certain things?
A: No, Beeswax does not allow manually setting SKAdNetwork Campaign IDs.

Q: What can someone do with the conversion value field?
A: The value field is being used by many marketers to pass data about post-install activities such as purchases and upgrades. Beeswax is agnostic as to how this value is used, and merely passes it through to the customer in Attributed Conversion Logs. Beeswax will only receive conversion values if the number of conversions meets Apple's SKAdnetwork privacy thresholds. Apple has not released any details about what this threshold is, and many ad networks report that very few postbacks include them (Source: Branch).

Q: How do you decide whether an ID is ‘present’ when referring to the “ID Present” field in Reporting?
A: For the purposes of ‘ID Present’, an impression must have one of the following two IDs present on the bid request:

  1. A “user_id” -- a Bito, IDFA, MAID, etc.
  2. A customer’s own ID, set up through a partner sync

Q: Is the MMP integration going to be the same for other MMPs?
A: We expect most of the MMPs will be relatively similar. A few have minor differences, but we tentatively anticipate similar data flows and field mapping paradigms.

Q: Will it be possible to backfill historical SKAD conversions to an MMP after we turn on an integration or if we switch the integration to another MMP (in the future)?
A: No.

Q: Does an MMP SKAD Integration replace the existing MMP integration with Beeswax?
A: No, SKAD is complementary. For example, if the user is still opted into IDFA or is on an Android device, Beeswax will still receive postbacks from the MMP in the normal way.

Q: Do I need to Target SKAd-Enabled Supply in order to use SKAd Tracking?
A: Strictly speaking, no, but this is not a recommended practice. Without targeting SKAd-Enabled Supply, the line item will bid on requests that are ineligible for SKAdNetwork attribution, defeating the purpose of SKAd Tracking.

Q: What is the iOS 14.5 adoption rate?
A: According to programmatic community data, there’s roughly a 15% adoption rate as of June 2021. We expect this will continue to rise.

Q: What percent of in-app traffic is Beeswax eligible to sign for SKAdNetwork?
A: Currently about 60% of all traffic coming from our main in-app partners are SKAdNetwork enabled and have Beeswax as an eligible signer. We should expect this to increase as iOS 14.5 is further adopted.

Q: Can this feature be used via the API?
A: Yes. Documentation on applying SKAd Tracking and Targeting via Buzz API can be found here and here.

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