What You Gain With AttributionA lot of marketers have been burned by (and lost faith in) attribution. But some people have successfully implemented attribution and the benefits that come with it: “I have seen companies implement attribution successfully. They have organized processes, and they have defined data structures. They’ve already thought through and implemented a defined UTM structure, a CRM campaign structure, and have the required metadata fields that have to be populated on every campaign to build out reports.” Marketers spend an average of one week per month dealing with spreadsheets. They’re cleaning up data, sourcing contacts, trying to deduplicate records, and then tie the systems together for reporting. With an automated reporting system and data hygiene tool in place, all of the time is freed up to make existing campaigns better and plan future campaigns. Key benefits include:
- Duplicates are eliminated
- No more data split between leads and contacts
- Metadata collection is automated or simplified
- Systems are integrated – which means full visibility
- Creating segmented lists is simplified
The First Key to Success: Proper Staffing“When it comes to implementing an attribution tool, the most significant point of failure is a lack of resourcing. “I’ve seen a lot of companies get really excited about the prospect of what attribution is and what it can do for them. They move forward with purchasing a tool that costs them a lot of money, but then it sits there, and the project gets delayed. They put it on the highest shelf in the room, and it just collects dust. They don’t have the resources on their team to support the tool. I think that has led to attribution having a negative connotation—they didn’t plan for the proper resources to implement and manage their systems.” Before anyone purchases an attribution tool, they should plan on devoting a team member to analytics and data management. There isn’t a replacement for a solid analyst who can sell the rest of the business on attribution and articulate marketing’s contribution to the business. “Attribution is something that can consistently be optimized. If you don’t have a resource diving into the tool every week, you’re losing out on crucial data. That loss accumulates over time. After a year goes by, you’ll be asked to prove that the project achieved something. People lose out on the tremendous time savings attribution offers because of a lack of resources.”
The Second Key to Success: PreparationAnna would like people to know that they can see positive results immediately from a data cleanup project. “Putting a better data structure in place doesn’t have to be a long, drawn-out process.” Easier items to put in place include (for details on each of these items and how they make up your campaign structure, click here):
- Identify and define your basic programs
- Standardize and define your channels
- Use and standardize UTM parameters – start with channels if this seems like a big job
- Standardize campaign names
- Templatize marketing automation workflows for campaigns
- Standardize state, country, and title fields
What to Look For in a Marketing Attribution ToolAnna recommends that before you start meeting with vendors, take the time to define your MarTech stack. She recommends you determine:
- Where is the data flowing?
- What isn’t integrated?
- What kind of metrics are you being asked for by leadership?
- What’s the main problem you want to solve?
For more on how to get help with attribution and why marketers should use more than one attribution model, listen to the full Revenue Marketing Report episode at the top of the article or anywhere you podcast.