In a mobile-first age, it’s crucial for marketers to know which apps and messaging styles will enable their ads to achieve the highest conversion rate possible. Mobile marketing attribution helps marketers to understand the customer journey by delivering insights on how a consumer interacts with a mobile ad. Once marketers have sufficient attribution data, they can optimise an app’s user funnel much more effectively.
A mobile attribution report provides information on where a user was acquired. The type of messaging that appeals to a particular audience, and which channels are performing or underperforming.
In this article, we’ll explore why mobile marketing attribution is important for marketing teams to get right, and how to find the best attribution model for your needs.
What is marketing attribution?
Marketing attribution is the process of identifying which of your marketing tactics led to particular desired outcomes. During attribution, most companies will assign a particular value to each relevant marketing touchpoint, so they can be compared. For example, using your available data, you might discover that your influencer marketing campaign led to the highest increase in your sales, while your paid social media ads were less effective.
The desired outcomes being measured can vary between businesses — they might be sales, app downloads, or customer data submissions — but are most often referred to as conversions. Conversion is usually one of the final steps in the marketing funnel, as it’s when the consumer completes the action you’ve been driving them toward with your marketing strategy.
However, marketing attribution is not straightforward, and you may have a difficult time defining the customer journey. It may be that a combination of marketing tactics led to a particular conversion, or you don’t have enough data on the identity of a customer to work out why they completed a conversion. In these instances, conversion modelling can fill in the gaps.
Why Marketers need to get mobile marketing attribution right?
Mobile attribution is key to helping marketers understand their user’s journey, from when they first click an ad, to when they install your app, to the actions they take afterwards.
For example, an attribution report can determine whether the user arrived in your app from a video ad on a streaming platform, or via a display ad on a website. This data can help marketers to pinpoint the most effective ads and platforms for their intended audience and understand how they could improve ad spends.
Through mobile attribution, marketers can also improve ROI by using the data collected for retargeting efforts. With over 5 million apps now available across iOS and Android, it’s vital to be able to keep up with the competition. By tracking user journeys, marketers can distinguish which users have shown interest or intent to purchase, and use remarketing techniques to bring those consumers back to their app.
How to find the best attribution model for your needs?
There are several types of attribution models which each have their own pros and cons. Let’s examine a few of them:
First Touch Attribution
The first touch model (or first click) attributes the success of a conversion on the first marketing channel used by the user. Like last touch, this is great at identifying which ads are most visible and can be implemented quickly by businesses. However, as with last touch, it doesn’t put value on the role of other touchpoints used throughout the customer’s decision making process.
Last Touch Attribution
The last touch model, (or last click), credits conversion to the last touchpoint that users interacted with. It’s easy to implement and provides a clear understanding of which channels are most effective. However, it misses the worth of each touchpoint in the journey and can lead to marketers making uninformed decisions by focusing on the last click conversion only.
Multi-touch attribution (MTA)
Multi-touch attribution allows marketers to attribute values to all contact points in the user journey. This provides a complete picture on how a consumer interacts with a brand. MTA has several different versions:
- Linear MTA – gives equal credit to each touchpoint
- Time-decay MTA – provides more value to recent touches and less to earlier ones
- U-shaped MTA – puts more emphasis on first and last touches, and less on the middle
- W-shaped MTA gives equal weight to first, middle and last touchpoints
According to a survey, 75% of companies are using a multi-touch attribution model to measure marketing performance. Leveraging different marketing channels is a key part of expanding your brand audience and increasing sales. However, you’ll not know which channels are having a significant impact without an examination of the available marketing analytics. So, make sure you examine the model and see if any results challenge your assumptions about your business.
Mobile Attribution in the Privacy Era
As awareness around data privacy grows, more online publishers such as Apple and Google are moving towards privacy-oriented policies. This has the potential of bringing several challenges for marketers.
For instance, since Apple started asking users to manually allow for tracking, many users have chosen to opt out. Attribution is much harder without data as there’s no way to identify users or distinguish which click resulted in conversion. Instead, attribution as per the revised policy drafted by Apple, can only be based on campaign ID.
With many more privacy rules to come, it’s important to work with a third party. M&C Saatchi Performance can provide expertise and help you navigate these changes.
Working with M&C Saatchi Performance
M&C Saatchi Performance has been the go-to mobile marketing agency since 2006. We can leverage our expertise and work with you to develop a tailor-made mobile marketing strategy for your business. We have thorough knowledge of mobile attribution strategies and can help you implement these effectively. Being your mobile marketing agency, we will be more than happy to guide you through the changing privacy landscape.
Reach out to us if you’re interested in speaking to one of our experts about our services.