3 ways to achieve growth through attribution

Published on 27th Jun 2017 in Digital Marketing

Accurate multichannel attribution is critical to business growth. Why? Because this is how you gain the unique insight into the customer journey you need to help you attract more customers and retain those you already converted.

The number of companies using multichannel attribution is growing rapidly. In fact, between 2016 and 2017, the number of US companies using multichannel attribution grew from 39.8% to 50.6%1. This illustrates the way in which marketers have grown to depend on it as an indicator of customer behaviour.

How can attribution help your business grow?

The insights provided by attribution tracking can help marketers optimise their output. Here are three key ways in which accurate attribution can help you achieve business growth:

1. Customer journey mapping

Understanding your customer's journey is vital for creating effective, engaging and relevant content that appeals to your audience. The most reliable way to do this is by creating a 'customer journey map' that identifies and weights each touchpoint from initial awareness through to eventual purchase, or as far along the conversion path as they got.

There is no longer any such thing as a linear journey. Customers do not follow a set route to your offer anymore, and they will typically use multiple devices, channels and touchpoints. By accurately mapping each of these permutations and putting a robust attribution system in place, you can begin to identify patterns. For example, you may find that your Twitter followers download the highest number of white papers: information you can use to refine your marketing strategy.

You will be able to identify which touchpoints encourage customers to progress, drop off or even make return visits. This will help you understand the direction of the sales funnel and the average sales cycle length, and therefore inform your marketing strategies and help you improve the customer experience.

2. Targeted marketing

Through the data you will generate by accurately attributing each touchpoint, you can identify key audience groups and their typical journey (if indeed such a thing exists).

There are lots of data subsets you can use to identify patterns and better target your marketing activity, such as:

  • Previous purchases
  • Keyword searches
  • Order of interactions
  • Drop-off points

This information can cause a shift in your marketing focus. By concentrating on the most popular and valuable attribution points (and which paths customers took to get there), you can generate more similar leads.

3. Justify spending

62% of marketers who use attribution say that justifying their spend is a high priority for doing so, according to Econsultancy.

Through proper attribution, you can prove that the campaigns/channels you are using are worth investing in as it reveals each one's true contribution to your bottom line. This helps you eliminate any 'dead wood', and ensures you are only paying for campaigns and channels that deliver proven results. For example, you can determine which PPC keywords lead to conversions, and dismiss any which do not.

three ways to achieve growth fig 1.png

(Graph courtesy of Econsultancy)

By finding these efficiencies within your budget, you will optimise your overall spend and boost profitability, as well as sales.

Barriers to attribution

Accurate multichannel attribution is a relatively new development in marketing, and there are still many barriers to overcome. Though useful, it is not yet considered a priority within marketing, and a lack of understanding of the concept translates to distrust and lack of use.

three ways to achieve growth fig 2.png

(Graph courtesy of Econsultancy)

It is important that both managers and staff understand the importance of attribution, and how to comprehend the data provided. As attribution models begin being implemented into departments worldwide, marketing methods will change. Budgets will become more flexible, certain technologies will be put in place to ensure accurate data is collected and the overall success rate of campaigns will increase dramatically.

Why call tracking is necessary for accurate attribution

It's easy to forget that digital marketing often leads to offline action: for example, someone Googles your services and then makes a phone call to enquire. You need to track all your incoming phone calls to get your attribution right – otherwise, there's a missing piece in the puzzle.

Visitor level call tracking provides unrivalled insight into the customer journey. From the customer's first interaction to purchase and beyond, you can determine each touchpoint used.

Call tracking is much more effective than last-click attribution, as it monitors the entire customer journey, not just where the visitor ended up. The precise nature of call tracking can provide extensive data on each and every interaction, including:

  • Date
  • Time
  • Length of time spent
  • Channel
  • Mobile or desktop
  • Whether they converted or dropped off

This level of data also makes it much easier to create a customer journey map that is entirely accurate and provides actionable data.

Infinity's call tracking platform bridges the gap between online and offline channels, so it considerably lessens the risk of inaccurate attribution due to channel/device hopping.

Attribution is rapidly becoming more popular, and it's no surprise that 90% of marketing organisations2 who've used it say they are seeing significant benefits. The insightful and actionable data provided by call tracking software only improves and supports this technique, so should be a key part of any attribution strategy.

To find out how Infinity can help improve attribution, get in touch today.

References:
1. "US Companies Using Multichannel Attribution Models", Emarketer, (August 2016)
2. "8 Trends Driving Marketing Attribution Now", Forbes, (July 2013)

Senior Digital Marketing Manager

Alex Worth
Senior Digital Marketing Manager

Digital marketing enthusiast at Infinity and when not at work is kept on her toes by two cheeky little boys.

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