Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The purpose of attribution modeling is to understand the entirety of the marketing-mix, across all channels, strategy and tactics; assigning a value that each has on consumer behavior. With defined touch points, marketers can analyze and optimize beyond last-click attribution, and know the ROI influence for each piece of the puzzle.

Standard site analytics only show behavior based on first or last touch (usually click) attribution. The most common channels for these touch points are Direct, SEO, SEM, Social Media, email, etc. These channels tend to overlap and influence each other leading to occasional confusion about which channel is truly responsible for any given conversion.

First and last touch attribution models place the channel delivering the visitor in its own silo, measured against its own performance over time, neglecting any interactions with the other marketing channels. This weakness of first and last touch attribution modeling is further exacerbated by the fact that standard conversion tracking systems can’t fully account for deleted cookies and multi-device users.

Beyond easily attributable digital marketing channels, advanced attribution modeling can place value on the impressions of Display, Video, Apps, etc., as the traditional digital marketing metrics like CPC, CTR, and CPA aren’t enough to measure these Top of the Funnel media buys. It is also capable of linking offline and online advertising together by placing value to TV, Radio, Outdoor, and Print buys. This type of evaluation is needed because it’s the only way to calculate how the many different digital and traditional channels have assisted in influencing users to convert.

Improving site analytics and adding more sources to the marketing mix is helping to generate more, and more accurate data. Better data offers marketers with additional opportunity to analyze and optimize their spends, improving campaign ROI.

However, overwhelming amounts of data require new strategies for strategic measurement, allowing for quicker and more accurate optimization decisions. As a result, brands, agencies, publishers, networks and DSPs should all be leveraging the value of new attribution modeling systems.