Word of the week: Attribution

By Word of the Week on January 9th, 2015

Attribution is the assigning of credit to marketing channels for a sale, signup or other type of conversion. Attribution models help organizations determine the value of their marketing efforts. Prospects often visit an organization’s website from several different channels including website referrals, direct visits, emails, organic search, paid search ads, display ads and social media. Attribution models decide which channels get credit for a conversion and how much.

Some common models used are first interaction, last interaction, linear and position-based. First interaction gives 100 percent of the credit to the first touchpoint a prospect had before converting, recognizing the effort that attracted the prospect in the first place. Last interaction gives entire credit to the last touchpoint a prospect interacted with before converting, which shows the impact of that touchpoint in the final conversion. The linear attribution model gives even recognition to all channels the prospect touched, while the position based model gives higher acknowledgement to the first and last channels with the rest receiving less credit. Both linear and position based recognize that a prospect may interact with several different channels before converting, each of them working toward that conversion.

Overall, knowing the different attribution models and their pros and cons will help marketers decide which channels bring the most value to their organizations.

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