R.I.P Attribution

Outdated. Outwitted. Outplayed. Rest in peace, Old-school Advertising Attribution. Make way for Multi-Touch Influence – the future has arrived.  

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You might be wondering, what is the problem with old-school attribution?  

Let’s say you went out for drinks. You started with three pints. Then a glass of wine. Two glasses of whiskey and a few shots of tequila. The next day, you find yourself hungover and wondering which drink caused it… Spoiler alert: there’s no way of knowing.  

It’s the same thing in advertising. Marketers love to think consumers shop in a straight line. Jim is in the market. Jim sees an ad. Jim clicks on the ad. Jim is immediately converted into a lead. But it’s not that simple. 

So why has marketing been planned and measured this way for the last 50 years? 

Attribution allows crediting teams and incentivizing results. Compensation can be tied to measured accountability. Plus, financial reporting and incrementality make sense on paper. Essentially, it’s easier for corporate teams to measure the consumer journey in a straight line.  

However, this isn’t how people actually shop and are influenced to purchase! Enterprises are fixated on finding the magic wand that made the difference. When in reality, it takes five or six different influences to propel a decision. Traditional tools only measure immediate conversions.  

For example, if someone clicks on a retargeting ad, but doesn’t immediately convert, it will never attribute that consumer as a result. Loss of cookies in the AdTech space has perpetuated the problem. And at the end of the day, you’ve only measured the low hanging fruit – impulsive clickers.  

But the real opportunity and money are going to be made by the consumers who shop in a non-linear path with various touch points… the way most consumers shop 

Let’s see how our friend Jim really shops. Jim is near-market and sees national video ads. After seeing these ads, Jim’s buying propensity increases. Later, Jim sees a national display retargeting ad. Followed by a national product specific incentive ad. His interest to buy grows again. Now Jim sees a regional video ad, receives a local retailer direct mail piece, while seeing another national display retargeting ad. With each ad Jim sees, he is more likely to buy. Finally, Jim sees a local retailer retargeting ad and decides it’s time to buy. 

Now the question becomes – what’s the modern solution to measure the success of the advertisements?  

The answer… adopt a multi-touch influence philosophy!  

Instead of chasing the magic wand, look for the magic mix. At FullThrottle, we do this with frequency and reach across all tiers and channels. Align objectives and key results around cost efficient touch points and meaningful messaging.  

Embrace the fact that the journey from ad to sale is never a linear path. It often takes days, and in that time frame, competitors are trying to conquest the potential buyers as well.  

Like any strong team, national and local retailers must work together and play their part. National takes the lead in the first half of the journey and local retailers bring it home.  

It’s never a straight path. There are many different ads that all work toward the same goal – to make the sale. Let’s measure all of them.  

FullThrottle a offers multi-touch influence solution

With our patent pending, cookieless technology, our platform completes the online and offline footprint of your customers. Construct your customer intelligence, assess all influences in the customer journey, and gain the ability to measure your ROI. To see how it works, schedule a demo here.

by Amol Waishampayan, Chief Product Officer

Amol Waishampayan Thought Leader