Marketers in today's online-obsessed world are constantly inundated with data and for good reason: Data is crucial for measuring success, learning from failures and proving marketing ROI. But how do you know what data to measure and at what point to measure in the customer journey?
There are a number of models marketers are likely familiar with for presenting their data, including marketing mix models, marketing optimization models, touch point allocation models and attribution models. Here, we discuss the step-by-step method for creating a successful attribution model.
The first step in an attribution model is to map content across the customer buying process. This includes things like customer case studies, mobile campaigns, newsletters, blogs and even online chats. The customer journey follows some form of this general pattern:
What you want to understand is how your content flows through this journey. For example, during the initial contact stage, did that person find you through a Twitter campaign or LinkedIn? After you've made the connection, did they visit your blog, start a conversation in a call and ultimately consider and buy your product after a webinar?
Answering the previously mentioned questions will dictate where and how you weight each content in the next step of the attribution model building process. Because success at the beginning of the journey will be based on whether that contact moved to the next stage, not whether they moved immediately to conversion.
This is called taking a “fractional” approach to attribution modeling. Some people assume only the very first touch matters – what got that person to initially raise their hand and make contact with your product or service. Others believe only the very last touch (or what ultimately led them to buy from you) is important. The truth is measuring success at the first or last touch in the journey only opens your process up to waste. You end up investing time and money in content and channels that stop or slow the lead from moving through the sales funnel.
You will want to weight each piece of content differently based on their statistical value in propelling that contact forward. You can choose something as simple as “low,” “medium” and “high” or go a little more advanced with a scale of one to 10. Again, this should be based on how successful the content or channel was in moving that lead to the next ideal step in the process.
A blog hit, for example, might have a value of six during the conversation stage because it moves the lead to a webinar fastest. This is scored higher in this hypothetical because the webinar moves them to an online demo, which has the highest success rate in moving the buyer to a deal. This might be compared to a contact from a Twitter campaign that's weighted less because it takes that person longer on average to move to a webinar. Or maybe these contacts don't ever move to a webinar and instead sign up for your newsletter, which has a far lower success rate for becoming a deal.
Once you have each piece of content weighted at the appropriate place in the customer journey, you will know which moves your ideal customer to consumption the fastest and at what stage. Ultimately, this will help you make the most of your marketing budget by removing time and money spent on content outside of your attribution model.
Watch VisionEdge Marketing President Laura Patterson's tips for creating a successful attribution model below!
What do you think about content scoring? Let us know in the comments below.
Ashley Verrill is a market analyst who writes for Software Advice. She has spent the last six years reporting and writing business news and strategy features. Her work has appeared in a myriad of publications including Inc., Upstart Business Journal, the Austin Business Journal and the North Bay Business Journal. Before joining Software Advice in 2012, she worked in sales management and advertising. She is a University of Texas graduate with a bachelor's degree in journalism.