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Multi-Channel Attribution - Where do Leads Come From?
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Multi-Channel Attribution - Where do Leads Come From?


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Gary Angel, President of Semphonic presented a keynote discussion to the 2010 AIM Conference on the topic of attributing value to leads when the advertiser knows that multiple lead sources contribute …

Gary Angel, President of Semphonic presented a keynote discussion to the 2010 AIM Conference on the topic of attributing value to leads when the advertiser knows that multiple lead sources contribute to the buying decision.

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  • 1. AIM 2010
    Where to Leads Come From
    Multi-Channel Attribution
    Gary Angel
  • 2. What is Attribution
    Attribution is a process for assigning/crediting a lead or a conversion to a specific set of marketing activities and touchpoints.
  • 3. Easy or Hard?
    Sometimes it’s easy:
    Sometimes it’s not:
    We got 1,500 calls.
    Saw TV
    Visited Web
    Visited Web
  • 4. It’s Getting Harder
    The number and diversity of marketing channels is growing making attribution even harder.
  • 5. Why it Matters
    Fights over attribution are sometimes perceived as being largely political:
    My TV ads drove 5 million in business
    My PPC campaign drove 2.5 million in business
    How come we only had 6 million in sales?
    My Display Campaign drove 1 million in business
  • 6. Why it Matters
    But you can’t optimize your overall Media Mix or your individual channel strategy unless you understand how each marketing channel works and how the overall program works together.
  • 7. Why it Matters
    For Instance:
    If Natural Search attracts early-stage buyers, it may seem to perform worse than Paid Search even though it drives more new customers.
    If Paid Search is heavily dependent on branded traffic, it may only perform well in conjunction with Mass Media buys.
    If Display creates awareness but doesn’t drive direct traffic it may only work in conjunction with heavy search buys.
  • 8. Common Methods of Attribution
    Last (Most Recent): The last known campaign touchpoint gets the credit for a conversion.
    First (Original): The earliest known campaign touchpoint gets the credit.
    Equal: Credit is divided equally between all known touchpoints.
    All: Full credit is given to every touchpoint.
    Spoken: Credit is given to the touchpoint identified by the customer.
  • 9. Last (Most Recent)
    The more your lead/sales environment is multi-touch – the less well this method works.
    In this example, 35% of the visitors who clicked on a paid brand term had already clicked on another paid term in the SAME session!
  • 10. First (Original)
    Especially problematic with longer sales-cycles.
    For this logged-in site, 33% of the people who registered used a different cookie IN THE SAME MONTH. More than 50% used a different cookie within 3 months.
  • 11. Equal (Shares Credit)
    Doesn’t really help with Marketing Mix calculations.
  • 12. All (Every Touchpoint full Credit)
    Doesn’t really help with Marketing Mix calculations.
    • If you’ve siloed reporting, there’s a good chance this is your de facto strategy!
  • Spoken (Customer id’s Touchpoint)
    Customer testimony is heavily influenced by collection point and method and, even at best, can be quite unreliable.
    Only 64% of the most dissatisfied visitors in an online survey had actually used the tool they were rating.
  • 13. Proper Attribution
  • 14. Aggressive Collection
  • 15. Web Analytics Techniques
    • Universal Campaign Coding
    • 16. Code all URLs with Params
    • 17. Don’t neglect URL Shorteners
    • 18. Standardize campaign coding and enforce.
  • Web Analytics Techniques
    • Separation of types of campaigns:
    • 19. Internal
    • 20. External
    • 21. This method will allow separate attribution studies to be made of internal vs. external without one type screening off the others.
  • Web Analytics Techniques
    • Campaign-Stacking
    • 22. Use a cookie to store all campaign values recorded for a visitor
    • 23. Pass to a variable in your web analytics solution
    • 24. Omniture has a plug-in for this
  • Web Analytics Techniques
    • Use multiple variables to track different attribution periods at least until confident of your sales-cycle.
    • 25. We suggest the following attribution strategies:
    • 26. Campaign = 45 days
    • 27. Internal Campaign = visit
    • 28. Redundant Campaign 1= Visit
    • 29. Redundant Campaign 2= 7 Days
  • Web Analytics Techniques
    • Capture of Visit Number
    • 30. Use a cookie to track the visit number of each visitor to your web properties
    • 31. Record the Visit Number in a web analytics variable
    • 32. Omniture has a plug-in for this
  • Web Analytics Techniques
    • Key Event Time-stamping
    • 33. Time-stamp key events in custom variables
    • 34. The timestamp should include at least the full date (YYYYMMDD form)
    • 35. Key events to timestamp include external campaign arrival, lead and conversion
    • 36. Timestamps are used in segmentation to study attribution and before/after key event behavior.
  • Web Analytics Techniques
    • Transaction Ids
    • 37. Record the Lead Id in your web analytics solution
    • 38. Where possible (Omniture, Unica, Core), update this value with actual lead-status
    • 39. This allows you to track actual lead effectiveness by campaign / behavior
  • Careful Analysis
  • 40. Necessary Research
  • 41. Recommended Conceptual Model
  • 42. Recommended Attribution Model
  • 43. It’s not just campaigns
    • This analysis looked at attribution based on previous visits without campaign sourcing.
    For two campaigns to this site, almost 50% of their click-throughs had already used the site!
  • 44. Showing Multi-Attribution
    • This Report shows how often each campaign interacts with others and what the total conversion rate is.
  • Showing Multi-Attribution
    • Here’s the same report with the biggest incremental lifts highlighted.
  • Dark-Period Testing
    • Testing media mix by going dark and tracking to baseline is a consistently useful method.
    In this case, going dark showed that the client had to purchase 6 clicks from these terms to get a single incremental visit.
  • 45. Correlation Analysis
    • Using correlation models, you can match marketing efforts to outcomes (if you have enough clean data):
    For this home products company we correlated weekly TV, Radio and Print TRPs, Banner Impressions, Search plus econometric data on housing starts and prices by region with web site activity.
    Media effects only correlated with a 1-2 month lag – TV was by far the most impactful.
  • 46. Comprehensive Reporting
    • This client chose to compare campaigns by pipeline stage:
  • Comprehensive Reporting
    • Here’s an example using our 4 Stage terminology:
    Comparison by Type
    Best Companion
    Best Overall & Trend
  • 47. Key Take-Aways
    Aggressively Code Sourcing
    Multiple #800s and Campaign-Specific #800s
    Multiple Asks
    Reward Asks
    Code Campaigns Everywhere
  • 48. Key Take-Aways
    Over-Time Tracking
    Campaign Stacking
    Universal Sourcing
    Time Encoding
    Global Rollups
    Shared Cookies
  • 49. Key Take-Aways
    Analyze Carefully
    Segment by Attribution and Life-stage type
    Look at attribution beyond just marketing campaigns (existing customers/visitors)
    Use Dark-Periods to Baseline and Tune Media Mix
    Use Correlation Models to track marketing impacts vs. econometric variables
  • 50. I’m Out!
    Gary Angel
    President, Semphonic
    415 884-2511
    @garyangel on Twitter