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Digital marketing ROI - An introduction to attribution modelling

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To help you get started in the potentially daunting realm of attribution modelling, we’ve crafted this whitepaper to explore what it is and how you can implement it for your business. We go through some of the most common attribution models and help define which of these is likely to be the best starting point for you.

Publicada em: Dados e análise
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  • DOWNLOAD THIS BOOKS INTO AVAILABLE FORMAT (2019 Update) ......................................................................................................................... ......................................................................................................................... Download Full PDF EBOOK here { https://soo.gd/irt2 } ......................................................................................................................... Download Full EPUB Ebook here { https://soo.gd/irt2 } ......................................................................................................................... Download Full doc Ebook here { https://soo.gd/irt2 } ......................................................................................................................... Download PDF EBOOK here { https://soo.gd/irt2 } ......................................................................................................................... Download EPUB Ebook here { https://soo.gd/irt2 } ......................................................................................................................... Download doc Ebook here { https://soo.gd/irt2 } ......................................................................................................................... ......................................................................................................................... ................................................................................................................................... eBook is an electronic version of a traditional print book THIS can be read by using a personal computer or by using an eBook reader. (An eBook reader can be a software application for use on a computer such as Microsoft's free Reader application, or a book-sized computer THIS is used solely as a reading device such as Nuvomedia's Rocket eBook.) Users can purchase an eBook on diskette or CD, but the most popular method of getting an eBook is to purchase a downloadable file of the eBook (or other reading material) from a Web site (such as Barnes and Noble) to be read from the user's computer or reading device. Generally, an eBook can be downloaded in five minutes or less ......................................................................................................................... .............. Browse by Genre Available eBooks .............................................................................................................................. Art, Biography, Business, Chick Lit, Children's, Christian, Classics, Comics, Contemporary, Cookbooks, Manga, Memoir, Music, Mystery, Non Fiction, Paranormal, Philosophy, Poetry, Psychology, Religion, Romance, Science, Science Fiction, Self Help, Suspense, Spirituality, Sports, Thriller, Travel, Young Adult, Crime, Ebooks, Fantasy, Fiction, Graphic Novels, Historical Fiction, History, Horror, Humor And Comedy, ......................................................................................................................... ......................................................................................................................... .....BEST SELLER FOR EBOOK RECOMMEND............................................................. ......................................................................................................................... Blowout: Corrupted Democracy, Rogue State Russia, and the Richest, Most Destructive Industry on Earth,-- The Ride of a Lifetime: Lessons Learned from 15 Years as CEO of the Walt Disney Company,-- Call Sign Chaos: Learning to Lead,-- StrengthsFinder 2.0,-- Stillness Is the Key,-- She Said: Breaking the Sexual Harassment Story THIS Helped Ignite a Movement,-- Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones,-- Everything Is Figureoutable,-- What It Takes: Lessons in the Pursuit of Excellence,-- Rich Dad Poor Dad: What the Rich Teach Their Kids About Money THIS the Poor and Middle Class Do Not!,-- The Total Money Makeover: Classic Edition: A Proven Plan for Financial Fitness,-- Shut Up and Listen!: Hard Business Truths THIS Will Help You Succeed, ......................................................................................................................... .........................................................................................................................
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Digital marketing ROI - An introduction to attribution modelling

  1. 1. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 1 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Digital Marketing ROI: An introduction to attribution modelling @bloomworldwide www.bloomworldwide.com hello@bloomworldwide.com
  2. 2. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 2 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Introduction 5 Chapter 1: What is attribution modelling? 6 Why bother? 7 Return on investment – Not ROI 7 What is it? 7 The different models 8 Chapter 2: Before we begin 9 In a hurry? 10 Illustrating the different models 10 ‘Finding Your Attribution Solution’ – visual guide 11 What we will cover 12 What is a conversion? 12 Chapter 3: Last Click – everyone’s first model 13 What is it? 14 Pros 14 Cons 14 When to use it 15 Chapter 4: First Click – Last Click’s mirror image 16 What is it? 17 Pros 17 Cons 17 When to use it 18 Chapter 5: Last Non-Direct Click and similar models 19 Notes on this chapter 20 What is it? 20 Pros 21 Cons 21 When to use it 22 Chapter 6: Linear – equal credit to each touchpoint 23 What is it? 24 Pros 24 Cons 24 When to use it 25 Content
  3. 3. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 3 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Chapter 7: Positional – location, location, location 26 What is it? 27 Pros 27 Cons 27 When to use it 28 Chapter 8: Time Decay – not as ominous as it sounds 29 What is it? 30 Pros 30 Cons 30 When to use it 31 Chapter 9: Customisation – the better model 32 Time 33 Channel 33 Position 33 Weighting 33 Any combination of the above... and many more 34 Chapter 10: A very social media 35 Demonstrating the value of social media 36 Social media and attribution modelling 36 Conclusion 37 Pictures 37 Where next? 37 Get in touch 38
  4. 4. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 4 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide In the late 1800’s, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle penned the above line for the world’s pre-eminent detective. 125 years later the majority of people still don’t adhere to its message. It is a capital mistake to theorise before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts. Sherlock Holmes ‘A Scandal in Bohemia’
  5. 5. 5 Introduction Attribution modelling is the method used to measure the monetary impact a piece of communication has on real business goals, for example: sales, customer retention, revenue and profit. It is a ‘catch-all’ term for changes to reporting structure and communication that allow us to move away from the familiar reporting language of digital marketing (time on site, engagement rate, click through rate, etc.), and translate these metrics into the valuable language of business reporting (volume of sales, net profit, percentage of returning customers). And critically how to do this efficiently, accurately and exhaustively. This paper will explore what attribution modelling is, how to implement it, and review common attribution models, which will help define the best starting point for your business.
  6. 6. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 6 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Chapter 1: What is attribution modelling?
  7. 7. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 7 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Return on investment – Not ROI This is what attribution modelling does; it attributes a monetary value to every piece of communication, allowing you to accurately measure the value of your efforts in terms of return on investment, the amount of money you get versus the amount of money you spend. Too often, ROI is discussed in non-financial terms. People forget what ROI means – return-on-investment – and talk about, for example, the extra conversation you generated, or the improvement you delivered in your search page ranking. These could be seen as digital ROI, but they are not real, financial ROI. Only this measurement allows you to accurately make informed decisions on budget allocation and which marketing activities will deliver on business goals. This is the primary objective of attribution modelling; to provide holistic, accurate information about the financial return activities are delivering so you can refine them, adjust what you’re doing, and use the same budget to deliver more value to your business and your customers. Why bother? There is a good chance that you’re already doing some form of attribution modelling and, when you look at its meaning, you’ll see why. Attribution modelling means defining a system of analysis that can be used to measure marketing metrics against business results. This means reporting on the impact of communication activity using metrics like: • Turnover • Profit • Customer retention • Volume of sales Instead of metrics like> • Share of voice • Web visits • Click through rate (CTR) • Impressions There’s a big difference between these two lists. The second list contains important metrics, but businesses, in theory, could survive without ever increasing them. However, the business metrics in the first list are essential for all companies that want to survive and thrive. Without them a business won’t grow, and it won’t last. Understanding the impact on business metrics is – rightly – more important to senior executives. What is it? As mentioned, there is a good chance that you’re already undertaking some system of reporting on business metrics, and therefore are – at least in its purest form – already modelling attribution. However, the term ‘attribution modelling’ has come to mean the discipline of doing this in a scalable, representative and holistic way. If you work for a business that sells online you will have seen - and maybe produced - reports that showed X% of website sales were driven by PPC, and therefore PPC delivers £X thousand at a cost of £Y thousand.
  8. 8. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 8 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide The different models There are a number of technology vendors who can implement tracking, tags, tag containers and similar services that will accurately gather the data you need. However, this paper focuses on analysis, and what you can do with the information once you’ve got it. This is what changes dramatically from business to business. We will look at common attribution models (or sets of rules) and when they should and shouldn’t be used to attribute results to your marketing activity. To get the data, you need – Technology By implementing the right technology, you can start gathering the information about where your different digital touchpoints appear in the customer journeys. There are several ways to do this and the most common is to implement tracking tags across all online activity. Tags allow individual user journeys to be tracked and analysed to see exactly how users behave when they are exposed to different marketing activities. This can all be done anonymously so you’re never violating users’ privacy. It is worth emphasising that even without the right technology in place, there is a great deal that can be done with the data you already have. By digging into the data you already have, and looking at how it relates to business performance, you can make great progress towards developing an attribution model. However, you know from experience that this is not the full picture. It doesn’t take into account the awareness-generating PR you conducted, or the affinity you created through your social media activity, or any of the countless touch points a consumer had with your brand prior to the purchase decision. PPC absolutely had a role to play but it wasn’t responsible for 100% of that purchase, you just don’t have the data to prove it. The right attribution model will give you this information. There are 2 steps to putting an attribution model in place> To understand the data, you need – Analysis The attribution model itself is the set of rules that determine the value of an interaction or touchpoint in a number of different scenarios. By applying these rules to different activities, and comparing the value that each activity delivers against the amount it costs to deliver, you can identify the return on investment from each activity; This approach allows you to ‘deep dive’ into the data – for example, not only can you determine the value of a tweet in general but you can determine the exact worth you received from a specific tweet.
  9. 9. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 9 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Chapter 2: Before we begin
  10. 10. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 10 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide In this example, the customer first encountered the brand through organic search, then through social media, then through an email and so on. The eighth touchpoint with the brand – a direct visit to the website – was the last and the point at which the customer made a purchase. The y-axis details how much of the customer’s spend is attributed to each channel. Here an increasing percentage of spend is attributed to each channel as the customer moves closer to the point of purchase. This is an example of the ‘Time Decay’ model, which will be discussed later. In a hurry? As with everything, there’s always somewhere you can start. No matter what point you’re on in your attribution journey, there is a small step you can take to move forward. Bloom Worldwide has created a visual guide to “Finding Your Attribution Solution”, which provides an overview of the most popular models. This can be seen on the following page. For those in a hurry, or who want a reminder, it’s worth keeping this infographic to hand. Download from: http://www.bloomworldwide.com/focus-on/attribution-roi/ Time Decay % Revenue Credited 100% %0 25% 50% 75% 1st: Organic Search 2nd: Social Media 4th: Display 7th: PPC 5th: Organic Search 6th: Direct 8th: Direct 3rd: Email Touchpoint Illustrating the different models To illustrate the different attribution models we will look at a number of examples using graphs like the one below. Each will show a customer journey from the first touch point to a purchase, and include all the points where the customer encounters the brand.
  11. 11. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 11 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide First Click Positional Last Non-Direct Click Linear Time Decay Last Click These attribution model recommendations are not based on data and indicative only. Bloom would like to reiterate that there is no one size fits all attribution solution. Please get in touch to discuss your business needs further so we can discuss the best model solution for you. Custom models may be recommended. YES NO YES YES YES CONSIDERED IMPULSE START NO NO YES NO NO What is it? This model gives all the credit to the channel of the first touchpoint your consumer has with your brand. Why use it? If you’re only advertising in one channel, most of your business can probably be traced back to that channel. What is it? The position in which the channel appears in your customers’ user journey (first touchpoint, second, third etc.) determines how much revenue they are credited with. Why use it? Users need time to consider you over multiple interactions, but you can prioritise those that begin and end that process. What is it? The channel of the last touchpoint your consumer had with your brand that wasn’t a direct website visit gets all the credit. Why use it? An advertised cheap price or other catalyst could have driven the sale, or made the user decide to return later. What is it? Every touchpoint that your consumer has with your brand is considered equally, receiving equal “credit”. Why use it? A long, research-filled user journey with multiple touchpoints working together means each channel should be weighted equally. What is it? Channels are credited based on the time it takes for the consumer to be exposed to your brand again after the touchpoint. Why use it? For impulse purchases, less time for a user to find your brand again can demonstrate more impact. What is it? The channel that drove the user to the visit when they purchased gets all the credit. Why use it? Your price or offering is likely the revenue driver rather than the channel, so it’s all about how easy it is for a consumer to get to you. Are you an impulse buy or a considered purchase? Is your comms activity multi-channel? Find out more at www.bloomworldwide.com The insight driven digital agency specialising in search, social and content. Follow us on twitter @bloomworldwide Say hello to us hello@bloomworldwide.com ‘Finding Your Attribution Solution’ - visual guide
  12. 12. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 12 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide What is a conversion? Throughout this paper we refer to a conversion as a sale, however, we know that not every online customer journey ends in a sale. If you are a brand where the purchase happens either offline, or in a multi or omni-channel environment, there is still huge value in putting attribution modelling in place to measure your digital marketing efforts. The only difference is what you consider as a conversion. Think about your online customer journey and identify the points that demonstrably move the customer closer to purchase. For example, booking a test drive, downloading a coupon, requesting more information, asking to speak to a sales representative and so on. Understanding the impact of different touchpoints on these conversions provides valuable business information that will help improve your digital marketing. What we will cover While there are many different ‘off the shelf’ attribution models, this paper concentrates on six of the most common: • Last Click • First Click • Last Non-Direct Click • Linear • Positional • Time Decay We also look at how you can customise these models to create bespoke approaches for different brands. Finally, we’ll touch on what attribution means for social media, and provide some useful additional pointers.
  13. 13. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 13 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Chapter 3: Last Click – everyone’s first model
  14. 14. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 14 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide What is it? Last Click is both the most commonly used model and one of the most inaccurate. The Last Click model assigns 100% of revenue generated to the last customer touchpoint before a purchase, as in the example below. Last Click % Revenue Credited 1st: Organic Search 2nd: Social Media 7th: PPC 5th: Organic Search 6th: Direct 8th: Direct 3rd: Email 4th: Display Touchpoint Sound familiar? It probably is. This is the model that most people use as standard when they start reporting (often unintentionally), because it’s one where all the data is instantly available in the format needed. It is useful because it is simple to set up. For example, if you’re an eCommerce site using Google Analytics, all that’s required is to set up a purchase Event or Goal at the ‘Thank you for your purchase’ page, and then look at the channel acquisition of all the visitors who got through to those conversions. The number of users who came from those channels and went through to purchase is exactly the number of consumers that channel drove according to Last Click attribution. It’s easy to track offline sales too. If you’ve got any sort of dynamic voucher code generation or call tracking software, you can generate a code or phone number for consumers to get touch with you. However, the model is not without its considerable drawbacks. Let’s go back to the explanation of the Last Click model: 100% of revenue generated is attributed to the last customer touch point before a purchase. When you think about this, it is both counterintuitive and inaccurate. It doesn’t take into account the brand advertising you conducted to drive awareness, any of the social media activity you undertook to generate affinity, or any other activity prior to the point of sale. That is why the Last Click model often paints an inaccurate picture; there are a host of other factors that inform a purchase decision ignored in favour of simplicity. Simplicity, in this case, does not equate to accuracy. check Pros close Cons 100% %0 25% 50% 75%
  15. 15. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 15 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide When to use it Last Click is simple to execute but often does not provide an accurate picture... so when can it be used? One scenario could be if you’re conducting a flash sale on a relatively unheard-of product with a large media spend. In this case Last Click will probably give you some useful, immediately actionable insights. Or if every single piece of marketing you undertake is aimed directly at driving a sale, Last Click will again give quick and useful (if not wholly accurate) insights. However, for most attribution challenges Last Click is too ‘all or nothing’ to deliver valuable business information. In these situations you need to move on to a slightly more sophisticated model. By tracking which consumers use which numbers or codes through your CRM, you can get a quick idea of which channel drove each visit.
  16. 16. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 16 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Chapter 4: First Click – Last Click’s mirror image
  17. 17. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 17 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide What is it? In layman’s terms, First Click attribution is the polar opposite of Last Click, it attributes 100% of revenue to the first consumer touchpoint. For example, if a customer first comes across your brand by clicking on an organic search listing, and then later – from a different visit – spends £100 on your website, organic search is said to have driven £100 of revenue. As demonstrated in the graph below, this model disregards any other touchpoints the customer experiences in the run-up to purchase. Much like Last Click, First Click derives the majority of its strength from simplicity. It works on the basic premise that if a user has never heard of you, they can never buy from you. So however they first heard of you is the ultimate cause of their spend. The biggest con of First Click is similar to the biggest con of Last Click: it deems one interaction – this time at the beginning rather than the end – to be wholly responsible for the spend. We know that the customer journey is more complex than this, and users often interact with brands many times before purchasing. So in this respect, First Click’s picture is too inaccurate to be of business use. First Click % Revenue Credited 1st: Organic Search 2nd: Social Media 7th: PPC 5th: Organic Search 6th: Direct 8th: Direct 3rd: Email 4th: Display Touchpoint check Pros close Cons 100% %0 25% 50% 75%
  18. 18. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 18 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide When to use it First Click comes into play when you have a single channel strategy, i.e. you’re only using one marketing channel to promote your brand. In this instance, First Click would be a better place to start than Last Click; imagine launching a brand on Twitter, and a consumer visiting you directly from that network. A week later, they remember you and return directly to your website to buy a product. In this case, the First Click model will attribute the sale to Twitter – a fair assumption given that is where the consumer first came across you. Last Click would attribute this sale to a direct visit, which wouldn’t really be fair, as the direct visit didn’t really do anything to cause the sale; it was just the medium through which the sale was achieved. The First Click is therefore ‘a more worthy’ method to attribute the revenue.
  19. 19. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 19 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Chapter 5: Last Non-Direct Click and similar models
  20. 20. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 20 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Notes on this chapter This chapter focuses on the Last Non-Direct Click model – and at the same time we will allude to other models that are similar in principle but different in activation. What is it? You will recognise that this model is similar to Last Click, except for cases when the Last Click is a direct visit. In such cases, this model finds the latest click that isn’t a direct visit and attributes 100% of the revenue to that channel instead. For example: If the 7th touchpoint was also a direct visit, the model would look at the 6th, and then the 5th etc. until it ‘found’ a touchpoint that wasn’t a direct visit, which would then receive all the value. The rationale behind this model is the idea that once a visitor comes directly to your website they have already made the decision to buy from you, so the cause of that purchase is not the direct visit itself, but the one that pre-empted that direct visit. There are other, not dissimilar models that work in the same manner, i.e. they suggest that if a certain channel appears at a certain point in the customer journey, they are either entirely responsible for the conversion, or in no way responsible for the conversion. Google Analytics has a model called Last AdWords Click (for PPC), which takes whatever the most recent interaction a user had with AdWords as wholly responsible for the sale. It doesn’t matter if they’d interacted with AdWords prior to the most recent click, or if they interacted with some, dozens or hundreds of other channels after the most recent AdWords click – the most recent AdWords click always receives 100% of the credit. If we slightly adapt our customer journey example to demonstrate this, it would look like this: Last Non-Direct Click % Revenue Credited 1st: Organic Search 2nd: Social Media 7th: PPC 5th: Organic Search 6th: Direct 8th: Direct 3rd: Email 4th: Display Touchpoint 100% %0 25% 50% 75%
  21. 21. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 21 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Last AdWords Click % Revenue Credited 1st: Organic Search 2nd: Social Media 7th: PPC (Adwords) 6th: Direct 9th: Email 8th: Social Media 10th: Direct 5th: Organic Search 3rd: Email 4th: PCC (AdWords) Touchpoint Again, there are many models that can be set up in a similar way in order to give all (or no) credit to certain channels at certain points of the user journey. But they all stem from similar principles, accountability. By accountability, we mean the ability to judge each channel according to what it should be doing. If you know that PPC is the one channel you are using to drive sales then you can use Last AdWords Click to measure this. If you know that there is nothing on your website that is going to increase a user’s inclination to buy, then Last Non-Direct Click reflects this. If, for example, you implemented a social media campaign that encouraged users to buy within a specific date range, then you could set up a model that gave 100% credit of any sales in that date range to any social media touchpoints that occurred during the campaign. The ability to customise this model to exactly what activity and goals your business is conducting is its greatest strength... ...and its greatest weakness. With accountability comes inherent bias; if you only deem a channel responsible under certain criteria then you are neglecting the possibility of it impacting another stage of the customer journey, or any halo effect it may have. You are also discounting the impact of other touchpoints in the customer journey. In both examples above, and any other model of this form (all or nothing under certain criteria) there is an unavoidable bias. In Last Non-Direct Click there is a natural bias against direct visits, as they can never receive any credit for the sale, and the last non- direct touchpoint will always receive all the credit. Similarly in the Last AdWords Click model there is a bias towards AdWords. As soon as a user clicks on an AdWords listing, no other channel has a chance of receiving the credit. check Pros close Cons 100% %0 25% 50% 75%
  22. 22. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 22 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide When to use it To state the obvious, the best time to use the Last Non-Direct Click or similar models is simply when the pros outweigh the cons, and when other options aren’t suitable. The level of control you are permitted in setting up this type of model, to measure exactly what you want to measure, is of real benefit. The time to use this model is, therefore, when this benefit outweighs the inherent bias that comes with weighting everything on an all or nothing model.
  23. 23. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 23 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Chapter 6: Linear – equal credit to each touchpoint
  24. 24. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 24 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide What is it? The Linear model is based on a different principle to the First and Last variants. Where those models deem that one part of the customer journey is solely responsible for the sale, the Linear model states that every step of the customer journey is equally responsible. It is the democratic attribution model; every touchpoint gets credit for an equal portion of the revenue a customer spends. Therefore, in a customer journey where the consumer had five interactions with the brand, each interaction will be credited with 20% of the revenue from that customer. In a journey with eight interactions, as below, each will be credited with 12.5%. Linear % Revenue Credited 1st: Organic Search 2nd: Social Media 7th: PPC 5th: Organic Search 3rd: Email 4th: Display 6th: Direct 8th: Direct Touchpoint This highlights another important difference between Linear and First and Last Click models. The Linear model, because it attributes value to different stages of the customer journey, presents the possibility that one channel can be ‘attributed’ twice. If you look at the graph above, Organic Search receives 12.5% of the revenue when it appears in both the 1st and 5th touch point. Likewise, Direct receives credit at both the 6th and 8th position. Therefore, while each touchpoint receives the same amount of credit for the conversion, different channels can receive very different amounts of credit in total. In this case, Social Media, Email, Display and PPC each get 12.5% of the credit, while Organic Search and Direct each get 25%. Linear recognises that every step of the journey is important in a customer’s conversion. Linear attribution Linear attribution does not recognise what a channel, campaign or activity is trying to achieve. For example, check Pros close Cons 100% %0 25% 50% 75%
  25. 25. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 25 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide means that more than one channel can receive credit from every purchase and so gives a clearer picture as to which channels are working best and which are not working at all. Linear is also useful because it is a more sophisticated model but one that is still relatively simple to understand. if a campaign receives an extra push of budget, which could potentially diminish the overall ROI, this isn’t reflected in the model. Similarly, if a campaign is intended to drive sales (i.e. the impact should be felt at the end of the customer journey) but instead generates awareness (the impact appears at the beginning), Linear would not recognise this crucial difference and therefore not demonstrate that the campaign had not achieved its objective. When to use it Due to its drawbacks, Linear is perfect when no ‘hero’ or push campaigns in progress. When you are delivering a standard marketing plan so you can compare how each channel performs on an ‘equal’ playing field. It is a good model to use in many cases if you are looking to progress away from Last Click, but perhaps not yet ready for a custom model. Because of its simplicity and fairness, it’s great as a first venture into more sophisticated attribution modelling.
  26. 26. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 26 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Chapter 7: Positional – location, location, location
  27. 27. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 27 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide What is it? The Positional model recognises two important factors in a strategy that the other models we have looked at so far do not: 1. The shape of a customer journey 2. The different values of the stages within it As we know, every part of a customer’s journey to purchase is important. While the familiar path of Awareness Consideration Conversion has become more sophisticated in recent years, the fact that there is a journey, which starts with a potential customer finding out about a brand, is undeniable. The Positional model acknowledges and represents this by combining aspects of First Click, Last Click and Linear. Essentially it says that the first touchpoint and the last touchpoint are worth X% each, and all the other touchpoints in between have the remaining % divided up evenly among them. A common set-up of the Positional model is to have the first and the last touchpoint worth 40% each, and the remaining 20% divided equally amongst the touchpoints in between. For example: Positional % Revenue Credited 1st: Organic Search 2nd: Social Media 7th: PPC 5th: Organic Search 3rd: Email 4th: Display 6th: Direct 8th: Direct Touchpoint We have already touched on the benefits of the Positional model, which recognises that different stages in a journey should receive credit for different % of revenue generated. The model gives prominence to the first and the last stages, those when the customer is The first issue is the weighting of the percentages. 40% to the first and last stage of the journey may seem like a large portion, especially when you consider how little it leaves for the other stages (particularly when you look at journeys with many more touchpoints). However, this is check Pros close Cons 100% %0 25% 50% 75%
  28. 28. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 28 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide When to use it So when do you use this model? A good example is when conducting large scale, global brand campaigns and smaller, local-product focused campaigns. The intention of these working in tandem is often to generate brand awareness from the large-scale brand campaign, and product consideration and conversation from the local campaigns. In these situations, Positional attribution is a great way to measure whether what you think you’re achieving, or what you’re trying to achieve, is what you’re actually getting from your combined global and national efforts. This makes it clear that the Organic search touchpoint wasn’t as valuable as we thought. While this was indeed when the customer first encountered our brand, it was sometime before they came back to us again on social media, and then a long time before they decided to purchase. In this example it starts to look – at least initially – more like the real catalyst was PPC. first exposed to the brand and when they converted. It balances this by recognising that every step in the customer journey has a role to play, and therefore every touchpoint receives some credit for the conversion. So, for the balance of weighting the (potentially) more important first and last steps of the conversion path while acknowledging that every step has a part to play, the Positional model is worthy of consideration. Positional % Revenue Credited 1st: 2nd: 3rd: 4th: 5th: 6th: 7th: 8th: Touchpoint Organic Search Social Media Email Display Organic Search Direct PPC Direct a minor concern as the percentages can be customised, which we’ll look at in more depth later. A bigger concern when considering a Positional attribution model is that, while it takes the shape of the user journey into account, it does not consider timescale, at least not in its core design. If you restructure our example to take into account not just the different touchpoints on the x-axis, but also the time between them, then a truer picture would look something like this (see graph below): 100% %0 25% 50% 75%
  29. 29. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 29 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Chapter 8: Time Decay – not as ominous as it sounds
  30. 30. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 30 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide What is it? Let’s clarify one thing: Time Decay is not the best model. Whilst Time Decay is one of the more sophisticated, in both implementation and understanding, this alone does not make it the best or the one that everyone should use. In the Time Decay model the principle is that the closer a touchpoint is to the conversion, the more influence that touchpoint had on the customer decision. It is important to stress that ‘closeness’ is based on time, not position in the user journey. This is particularly important when looking at the example below because the shape of the graph could be very different depending on the time frame over which it occurs. To give context to the example, let us say that 24 hours passed between the first touchpoint and the second, 12 hours between the second and third, and 6 hours between the third and fourth. Then the time keeps halving until only 22 minutes and 30 seconds passes between the seventh and eighth touch point, which leads to the purchase. Time Decay % Revenue Credited 1st: Organic Search 2nd: Social Media 7th: PPC 8th: Direct 6th: Direct 5th: Organic Search 3rd: Email 4th: Display Touchpoint The Time Decay model attempts to represent the intent of any piece of comms activity to increase a customer’s willingness to buy and accelerate their decision to do so. It is a good way to understand which activities are causing the biggest step-change in your marketing activity; it gives credit to the touchpoints Because Time Decay focuses on the timeline, rather than the shape of a customer journey it can, if not planned correctly, over-favour the touchpoints most recent to the purchase. For example, research is an important stage in many customer journeys. This research could happen at one time, when the customer check Pros close Cons 100% %0 25% 50% 75%
  31. 31. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 31 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide When to use it When you have an holistic, multi-tiered and complimentary communications strategy with each aspect having an intended call to action that leads to the next step in the journey, Time Decay can give you an accurate picture of whether your strategy is delivering as intended. With the right set-up, it can also be a good model for those selling products or services that are long-term considerations as opposed to impulse buys. The model can show you which of the many different touchpoints are expediting the journey, which are causing a slow down, and which are causing users to drop off. Here Time Decay can provide a valuable picture of long-term purchase cycles. that generate the gradual increases in momentum that many purchase decisions go through over time and focuses on touchpoints that are drawing that decision to a conclusion and converting the sale. has multiple contacts with the brand. The outcome of the research could be a decision to purchase, but the purchase itself could happen several days later. The time frame between the purchase and the research is not relevant to the customer. It is an arbitrary period between deciding to buy and acting on that decision. Time Decay ‘penalises’ all the important touchpoints during the research phase simply because of that time period. In this instance though, the touchpoints most recent to the purchase are less important that those during the customer’s research. However, because of the way Time Decay weights channels, the picture it presents to senior stakeholders or those not familiar with the data could be innacurate.
  32. 32. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 32 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Chapter 9: Customisation – the better model
  33. 33. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 33 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide The right model for you The most important factor when looking at attribution modelling is recognising that off-the-shelf models are not the whole picture. They are a starting point on the path toward identifying the best attribution model for your brand or organisation. One of the steps on this path is understanding what can be customised, given the right technology and the right set-up. Below we provide an overview of the different elements within attribution modelling that can be customised and combined to create the right model for you. Time As touched on in Chapter 8: Time Decay, customising the way a model behaves depending on time can be very important. For example you could set a rule that, if a customer doesn’t interact with your brand for a week, then that journey is considered over. If the same customer returns, a new journey is started. Similarly if a customer is exposed to two complimentary touchpoints in a set space of time, you may want to up-weight the value of one or both because they are shown to be acting in tandem. Setting different rules based on different time periods is one way to customise an attribution model. Channel As described in Chapter 5: Last Non-Direct Click, different channels have different behaviours and different intentions. You may therefore want to weight them according to the amount of channel spend, the perceived value of the action it is intended to motivate, or the amount it appears in different customer journeys. For example, if you want to quickly look at ROI, and are spending a fraction of the amount on social media than you are on PPC, then you may chose to down-weight PPC interactions and up-weight the value of social media interactions. Position In Chapter 5: Last Non-Direct Click, we looked at the importance of different channels appearing in different positions on the customer journey. Does a direct visit to your website that appears in the first stages of the journey have the same value as a direct visit that occurs in the final stages? You can customise your model to take into account such questions. Similarly, in Chapter 7: Positional, we examined how important it is to know which positions are the most important to your customers’ journeys. It is essential to customise positions so they best represent what is right for your brand. Weighting We have looked at models that apply different weightings under different criteria: for example Positional depending on different positions, or Time Decay based on different timelines. It is possible to customise the different percentage weightings within these models. Should the first engagement be worth slightly
  34. 34. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 34 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Any combination of the above... and many more The end customer action, the campaign you are running, the time of year, which web pages are visited... all of these and more can be used to tailor an attribution model to your needs and ensure it is as useful as it can be for your business. All the models we have looked at (and more) are interrelated, and each has its nuances. It is important to have a team who understand your business, your data, your brand, your needs and your available technology in order to devise the best, pragmatic solution. The optimum solution is almost always a combination of everything we have covered. The best attribution projects will consider: 1. The right solution to strive for 2. The best way to get there to continually deliver more ROI on the project as a whole less in Positional? Should you adjust the credit Time Decay gives to each touchpoint as time from purchase increases? Customising the weighting you give to each touchpoint in each circumstance is a further opportunity to create an attribution model that makes sense for your brand.
  35. 35. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 35 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Chapter 10: A very social media
  36. 36. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 36 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Demonstrating the value of social media Before concluding, it is worth taking a look at social media, a prime candidate for a case study on the importance of attribution modelling. Many Social Media Managers struggle to demonstrate the business impact of their work. They know it’s there, indicated by improving engagement rates, increased audience sizes, advocacy and more. However, these are still merely indications of a deeper business success that hides beneath the surface and is difficult to prove. Social Media Managers know this and understand that social media is primarily an awareness, affinity and retention-increasing platform, not a channel that focuses on direct selling. But when budget decisions come to be made they find it difficult to justify why they should have budget because PPC Managers are reaping part of the reward from the awareness and affinity they generated, which undoubtedly increased that AdWords click through rate (CTR). Social media and attribution modelling Attribution modelling levels this playing field and proves the business impact that social media has on the bottom line. It allows Social Media Managers to take credit for the work they are doing by assigning a fiscal value to every action, campaign and network they manage, and therefore to demonstrate real ROI. It is tough to justify a campaign that will generate 100,000 Facebook fans if not a single fan from the first 10,000 clicks through to make a purchase. It is easier to do this when you can prove that each of those fans added £1 to the bottom line; it just appeared further up the conversion funnel than had previously been identified. All of a sudden that Facebook campaign seems to make a lot more business sense.
  37. 37. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 37 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Conclusion Pictures Reading, understanding and implementing the suggestions in this white paper is a first step. The most useful attribution models, those that hit the sweet spot of being the most accurate and well used, are bespoke implementations that reflect detailed knowledge of a brand and its communication strategy. We hope we have demonstrated the possibilities that implementing an attribution model offers, and why it’s important to ensure that the model presents an accurate picture of customer behaviour. The question always arises as to whether these pictures will be perfect, and the honest answer to this question is no. No picture of communication attribution is perfect, and anyone who claims otherwise is peddling snake oil. There is always the possibility that customers will swap devices, swap browsers, deny tracking cookies and so on. It is difficult to circumvent one, let alone all of these and as a result attribution will always present an imperfect picture. However, this picture is still a significantly more accurate and useful one than traditional reporting allows for. We have only scratched the surface, there are valuable methods that include offline communication and customer engagements in your attribution model to give an even fuller picture. This can include TV, print, DM, telesales and more. So the future is bright for those who invest in attribution modelling now, and use it to optimise their marketing spend in future. Where next? Some may focus on the bad news after reading through this paper, to recognise how far away we are from the perfect attribution model. This would be to deliver false worry, no optimum model is implemented overnight: it is a process of small steps towards a greater goal. With each step resulting in small learnings that can deliver big wins. There is always a first step you can take with the information you have available. Just having a data strategist look at the data your digital marketing activities generate, in light of the business return you have actually delivered, will reap wonders in terms of costs that can be saved, profits increased, and budgets efficiently allocated. It is possible to get to the truth about how your digital marketing activity is impacting your bottom line, and deliver valuable and appreciated reporting as a result. Don’t report your data to suit your strategy, design your strategy in response to data.
  38. 38. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 38 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide Get in touch To find out more about how Bloom can help define and implement the right attribution model for your business speak to: John Murphy Head of Multichannel + 44 (0) 1273 732 626 john@bloomworldwide.com @JohnMur3 About the author John is our Head of Planning here at Bloom. He lives and breathes digital – from social to search, PoS to Python and everything in between, John has worked with all types of digital communication and is always up to date with the latest industry changes. A numbers geek at heart, John also prides himself on making sure everything he and Bloom does is grounded in numbers and leads to numbers; ensuring work is based on provable insights to maximise success and leads to measurable results to demonstrate actual business impact. By combining digital knowledge with data-driven intelligence, John has lead and worked on projects that have won awards including DMAs, Marketing Week Engage Awards, BiMAs and more. John’s shamelessly paraphrased motto is ‘head in the clouds, feet on the ground’ – he believes that the best ideas are those which are over-ambitious but not unachievable, and that all work is only as good as the action or change it drives.
  39. 39. www.bloomworldwide.com | hello@bloomworldwide.com 39 You are not permitted to copy any element of this white paper without prior written agreement from Bloom Worldwide. Copyright 2014 ©, Bloom Worldwide @bloomworldwide www.bloomworldwide.com hello@bloomworldwide.com Thanks for reading

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