At Customer First Digital we continue to be surprised with the confusion and the lack of adoption of an alternative to a last click wins attribution model. Our latest article answers the key industry questions which continue to be asked.
Digital marketing attribution refers to the way that you choose to measure the effectiveness of your online marketing investment. The are many attribution models which could be used including:
There are other standard models and various custom models which could be applied too however we won't bore you with the list!
In the early days of digital last click wins was the only form of measurement used to understand the effectiveness of their digital marketing activity. As data capability grew, the path to purchase was more clearly understood, with the realisation that budget planning an optimisation was being biased by a last click view. No credit was being given to the marketing channels (digital or traditional), which helped to raise awareness and interest about the brand.
This in turn led to under investment in such channels and a focus on direct response sales driving channels which worked at a strong Return on Ad Spend (ROAS), Cost Per Acquisition (CPA) or Cost of Sale (COS). Taking such an approach is more likely to have a detrimental impact on a brands longer term growth.
Our experience has shown there are three reasons why brands struggle to adopt attribution:
We have found the main factor is suppliers in the market, who have a ripple effect on a brands knowledge and confidence to change. I will not mention any names, however our experience is that there are certain technology solutions in the market which have sold the dream, however, are not able to deliver. Setup and ongoing costs can be high and time to launch can be between 6 months to a year. Another common challenge is that the technology suppliers do not understand the brands business, including the product mix, what drives profitability, what success looks like and the ins and outs of their digital marketing activity.
Media providers also cause confusion when they recommend moving to an attribution model within channel. Not only does this miss the point of attribution, which should consider all digital marketing channels, the data reported in the platforms does not match your single source of truth online analytics platform e.g. Google Analytics, Adobe.
As a result, many brands have been scarred by this experience and are left stuck with their last click wins approach.
You do not have to invest in a 3rd party to understand whether attribution will benefit your business. As most brands use Google Analytics, there are certain data views in the Conversion > Multi-Channel Funnels section which will give you a good steer for established brands. These include:
Which attribution model is right for my business?
If the data tells you that your budget and optimisation decision making would change as a result of changing the way you measure success, the big question is what I should do next. Unfortunately, there is no one size fits all answer to this question. Each brand invests in digital marketing differently which will affect the choice.
The typical customer journey will also impact this and may result in a custom model being required.. For example, a brand selling home furniture will see more steps in the customer journey than a brand who sell fast fashion. The home furniture brand may also have a store, therefore a higher weighting to the activity which activated the customer would make more sense. There may also be two conversion types, with different values to the business, which would need to be considered.
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We understand the imporortance of having a sustainable approach to measuring the value of your online marketng. If you woukd like support with understanding how you can make the change, get in touch to understand how we can help you.
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