Recently Instagram added a new setting that allows users to choose whether they can be targeted with more personalized ads in the app via the usage of supplementary data sourced from third-party platforms and providers.

These new “Data From Partners” settings will enable users to opt-out of the use of partner-sourced data to target them with more personalized ads. Facebook also added a similar feature for all users recently with the broader launch of its ‘Off-Facebook Activity’ tools.

As explained in the description, Instagram, as with Facebook more broadly, uses data insights from other apps and websites in order to better personalize each users’ ad experience. Facebook then tracks these additional data points via the use of Facebook’s SDK and other tools, which then feed back information on users’ off-platform actions.

These insights are likely to become increasingly valuable in future. As Instagram shifts further into eCommerce, the capacity to use off-platform browsing and transaction data will become a key way to maximize retargeting, and generate more direct sales through the app.

You can imagine that this will also see a lot more businesses signing up for advanced customer tracking, which, in turn, will see more people raising questions about how they’re being targeting via their off-platform activity. Facebook is looking to get ahead of the curve, and is offering new ways for users to opt-out of such tracking and usage if they creeped out by in-app ad targeting.

In order to ensure all users are aware of the setting, Instagram sent out an in-app notification, calling on people to review their ad settings.​ If the user has connected their Facebook account, the new setting will also respect the choices noted via their Facebook Ad Preferences.

As noted, given the anticipated rise of eCommerce via Instagram, this makes a lot of sense, and by getting in now, Instagram may also reduce the amount of users who’ll actually switch this setting off, enabling them to provide enhanced ad retargeting options for more businesses.

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