Marketing Attribution 101

Marketing Attribution Road Map

In a complicated sales process, it is common for marketing to touch a prospect multiple times. How do you measure how much impact every marketing touch had? The answer to this question is “marketing attribution.” Attribution is the process of assigning credit to the different marketing touches that occur over the course of a prospect or buyer’s journey with your company.

Attribution can be important for several reasons:

  1. Marketers need to know which touches are working the best so they can do more of them while de-prioritizing other touches that are less effective.
  2. Marketing always has a budget. Sometimes attribution information can be helpful to determine what that budget should be.
  3. In some companies, marketing wants to claim more credit for the impact they have, and they may feel that assigning dollar amounts to their work can raise their credibility.

At FunnelWise, we were not the first to talk about attribution, but we understand how attribution is an important part of understanding your overall revenue funnel performance. For this reason, we are excited to announce new attribution functionality in the FunnelWise application.

How to Approach Attribution

As you think about the journey a prospect goes on as they consider becoming a paying customer for your company, there are likely several marketing touches along the way. Which of those touches had the most impact? That’s what attribution attempts to answer.

Example buyer’s journey with marketing touches

Most approaches to attribution categorize the marketing interactions based on “first touch.” “last touch” and “multi-touch.”

  • First touch – this is the first marketing touch.
  • Last touch – this is the last marketing interaction before a key milestone, such as the last touch before a sales opportunity is created or the last touch before the opportunity is closed won.
  • Multi-touch – this is dividing credit amongst all of the touches along the way.

The typical approach to attribution looks at first touch, last touch and multi-touch based on the entire journey from initial contact through closed or the marketing-owned portion of the journey from initial contact through when a sales opportunity is created.

How FunnelWise Attribution Works

FunnelWise takes attribution a step further by overlaying your marketing touches with all of the stages in your funnel.

This means that instead of only looking at how marketing programs influenced one or two milestones, we instead show you the marketing touches that interacted between every step of the journey.

FunnelWise Attribution

FunnelWise’s approach to marketing attribution

The benefit of this approach is that it allows you to more clearly identify which marketing touches are helping leads or opportunities move forward successfully through every stage of your funnel. For example, you can answer questions like:

  •      Which campaigns are converting the most leads to MQL?
  •      Which campaigns are the best at helping MQLs become opportunities?
  •      Which campaigns produce the most disqualified or recycled leads?
  •      Which campaigns help our sales staff the most during the opportunity stages of our funnel?

By overlaying attribution information with your other funnel data, you can get a much deeper stage-by-stage understanding of how your marketing activities are performing. You can now answer the first question from the beginning of this article: Which touches are working the best so we can do more of them?

Weighted Models and Other Advanced Features

Some tools try to take attribution a step further by applying weighted models to multi-touch attribution. You may have heard of terms like U-shaped models, W-shaped, Z-shaped or time decay. These are just different approaches to writing a formula that figures out how to divide the dollar amount of a closed won opportunity amongst different touches.

For example, if you have a $100,000 opportunity, should the webinar that one of the contacts associated with that opportunity attended count for $5,000 or $2,500?

Weighted models try to answer this, but ultimately, they are still a best guess. They are interesting to experiment with but do not always lead to firm conclusions.

If you’d like to go beyond the stage-by-stage attribution reporting in FunnelWise and delve more into weighted models, we’d love to recommend you to our friends at LeanData. LeanData has a terrific advanced attribution tool that partners well with FunnelWise. They also have other significant benefits including a sophisticated lead routing solution. Feel free to reach out to them directly or let us know if you would like an introduction.

Ready to Learn More About FunnelWise Attribution?

Contact us now to sign up for a demo or to speak with one of our revenue funnel experts.

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