The Next Generation: Connecting Marketing Spend to Results
It takes more than a single ad impression or site visit for a customer to finally make a purchase. As a result, marketers must ensure that they touch consumers in a variety of channels to drive conversions. So, how does a marketer accurately decipher each campaign's impact or attribute revenue back to each consumer touch point?
Let's start with the concept of attribution. At a high level, marketing attribution is the idea that conversion credit can be given to one or more advertising campaigns involved in the consumer journey. Until recently, most marketers did not have a model to access this data, and instead relied on software that used the last click as a way of crediting one campaign with a sale.
Unfortunately, relying on this model doesn't give credit for additional ad impressions or clicks. Marketers are forced to make decisions based on aggregated last click analytics that can't be manipulated for in-depth analysis. Further, these software systems lack the flexibility to change, provide a "what-if analysis" or test basic allocation models.
Even with an attribution vendor on board, it can be very hard to understand the real contribution of a campaign. First-generation attribution technology vendors provide solutions that fail to meet the need of brands and agencies because they cannot be tweaked or rebuilt after they are deployed. These vendors crunch the data, but leave no room for a marketer's input, innate creativity and desire for customization. Some of these vendors can't weight the value of a contribution based on ad size or type—some don't even give consideration to impressions and only factor in clicks!
How Should it Change?
New world tracking and attribution modeling tools offer marketers both the accuracy and flexibility required to efficiently and effectively assign credit to the real winners that drive sales.