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The State of Marketing Attribution

18. 12. 2018

More and more advertisers recognize the potential and necessity of marketing attribution. But despite the fact that marketers give high priority to attribution, there are still many gaps and challenges. This is due to the complexity of cross-device campaigns, the quality of existing data or the use of outdated attribution models. This prevents marketers from identifying key elements of their marketing campaigns and from understanding which marketing measures are actually effective.

In the report The State of Marketing Attribution, eMarketer examines the current state of attribution within companies and explains the trends and challenges that advertisers face in this context. We have summarized the most important insights in our blog post.



In April 2018, Tune and Acceleration Partners surveyed 2,274 advertisers from Great Britain and the USA in order to find out which marketing models are already in use within advertising companies. The results show that 45.3 percent of respondents already use a multi-touch attribution model to evaluate and optimize their marketing campaigns.


Source: Tune and Acceleration Partners, “Performance Evolution: Putting the Brand Budget to Work“, August 2018

However, the survey also shows that position-based models or traditional models such as First Click and Last Click are still widespread.

The requirements for marketing are constantly growing and the possibilities to reach a customers are diverse. So why are marketers still trying to tie conversions to a single touchpoint? One reason could be the simplicity of this methodology, because attributing a conversion to the last click is uncomplicated and easy to understand. Accordingly, this approach is still well-known, although important customer journey factors remain unconsidered.

Effective marketing therefore requires a holistic approach in which each touch point along the customer journey is assigned the right share.

All you need to know about Marketing Attribution

More and more marketing specialists realise this requirement. According to a survey conducted by Adweek Branded and Dun & Bradstreet in September 2018, two fifths of B2B marketers surveyed have already started using multi-channel attribution. Another 44 percent said they plan to implement multi-channel attribution within the next two years.



Although many advertisers today are aware of the advantages of multi-touch attribution, this field is still considered untapped. This is also shown by a study by Kantar in August 2018, in which 468 senior marketing managers worldwide were interviewed. 54 percent of respondents said that multi-touch attribution was one of the biggest gaps in their marketing.

Choosing the right attribution provider and model is critical to closing these gaps. The MarTech partner should provide the right level of support to the advertiser so that employees are qualified to use the technology. The introduction of multi-touch attribution is a complex project that can only work if advertisers receive sufficient support on vendor side right from the start.

Read more: 8 Best Practice Tips for the successful implementation of dynamic Marketing Attribution



For some marketing channels it is easier to introduce an attribution model than for others. Especially with non-addressable channels such as content marketing, TV or print, where marketing messages are communicated to consumers who cannot be identified at user level, the challenge is to include them in the evaluation of the marketing measures.

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